So How Come We Support Man Utd Football Club
When people ask which football team we support, and the answer is Man United we always get the same question. “Why do you support Man Utd? You live in Oxfordshire!”
It’s funny as Mr J, me and G all support Man U, but for different reasons. Mr J supports them because it’s the first proper football game he can remember watching, it was Man Utd v Benfica in the 1968 European Cup; he was 7 years old. Me because it was the first proper game I went to when my sister was at Uni in Manchester and we went to a Man U v Norwich game. And, G because when she was at school her best friend L was a big Man U fan whose Nan lived in Manchester. L’s Dad took them to a Wimbledon v Man Utd game and G was well and truly hit by the football bug, over 27 year ago!
G is probably by far the biggest football fan in our family and has always loved going along to games. We were seasons ticket holders at Old Trafford for quite a few years and would regularly make the 350 mile round trip to games as a family. G was still coming along to the games when she was over 8 months pregnant with Grandson No 1 (F).
When the Grandsons came along we gave up our season tickets as we just didn’t have the time to go along to as many games, especially as the boys weekends are now taken up playing football for their local youth team, Didcot Town FC.
We have remained members and still get to go to 3 or 4 games a year with G and the two older Grandsons. Grandson No 3 will be coming along next season now that he’s old enough to sit still for 90 minutes.
Obviously, the boys are also huge Man Utd fans, G has passed on her love of the game to them all, and even though they never saw the Class of 92 play they’ve huge fans and have watched the film and documentaries many times.
We haven’t managed to convert Mr G to becoming a Man Utd fan as he’s a lifelong Barnsley supporter; this means the boys second team is Barnsley. That’s o.k. just as long as Barnsley never make it back into the Premier League 🙂
Old Trafford 3rd February 2018
The most recent game we went to was against Huddersfield on the 3rd February 2018. It was the closest game to the 60th anniversary of the Munich disaster and there was a remembrance service for the 23 people, including 8 players, who were killed when a plane carrying the United team crashed during take-off from Munich-Riem airport on 6 February 1958.
The players nicknamed the “Busby Babes” after the team’s manager, Matt Busby, had been returning from a European Cup match in Yugoslavia. After stopping to refuel, the plane skidded in slush on the runway during take-off, crashed through a fence and hit a cottage.
During the remembrance service the song “The Flowers of Manchester” was sung, a song written in tribute to those who died in the crash, containing the lines:
“Oh, England’s finest football team its record truly great, its proud successes mocked by a cruel turn of fate. Eight men will never play again, who met destruction there, the flowers of English football, the flowers of Manchester.”
There was also a minute’s silence held before the game kicked off and each supporter was given a commemorative book “The Flowers of Manchester”.
It was an uneventful first half with Huddersfield proving hard to break down. The second half proved more productive for United with Lukaku scoring on 55 minutes with a close-range volley. The boys were very excited to see Alexis Sanchez on his home debut especially as he scored his first goal for United although it took a follow up on the rebound from his penalty for him to hit the back of the net.
The boys were pleased with the 2-0 win, it always makes for a much happier journey home when United win.
Dinner At Cafe Football
When there are over 70,000 people all leaving the Stadium at the same time you can imagine what the roads are like getting away from Old Trafford. That’s why we always go and have dinner at Cafe Football which is located in Hotel Football just across the road.
Hotel Football is owned by former players Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt, Phil Neville, and Gary Neville. There’s a five-a-side AstroTurf pitch on the roof which on match days turns into a bar and barbecue area and dedicated Supporters floor where the £1 entrance fee goes to local causes.
The restaurant has a slightly retro diner feel and the football theme is well done with small details such as the Panini Wallpaper, which G loves. It has a good buzzy atmosphere and is perfect for a quick dinner and spotting the occasional ex football player before making the 170 mile trip back home with slightly clearer roads.
There’s always an activity sheet for the kids and they love colouring in the “design your own football boot” and completing the word search that keeps them occupied before the food arrives.
The food at cafe Football is great for the kids, there’s always something they want on the menu, and we’ve always enjoyed our meals there. There’s a varied menu with traditional meals put together with a twist.
It was all inspired by good, honest food which brings people together, whether in the stands or at home. We took this idea of wholesome food and turned it into something a bit special. Cafe Football is a unique restaurant that feeds a love of food and football.
We started by sharing a big plate of nachos with chilli beef, chorizo, jalapeño, roquitos, guacamole and jalapeño cheese. The boys like the nachos and cheese so usually pick their out from the bottom leaving us with the all the jalapeños.
Mr J had “THE BEAST” for his main course, two dry aged beef patties, mac and cheese patty, pulled pork, cheddar, jalapeños, olives and aioli. It certainly is a Beast and proved too much for Mr J although it was very tasty and well cooked, of course I had to try a little bit. I had the “THE SPECIAL ONE” with chargrilled chicken piri piri, red onion, Memphis crème, baby gem and goat’s cheese. It was delicious, and I loved the combination of chicken and goats cheese which was unusual. G had the Piri Piri Chicken Kebab and the boys had sausage and mash and a CF kids’ burger.
The kids’ menu is great value as you get a main course, drink and then the boys favourite a trip to the CF sweet shop for an ice cream or bag of sweets.
After an enjoyable dinner it was time to head home. The boys were in charge of the music being played in the car, so we listened to a lot of Oasis, Kasabian and general indie bands.
I’d love to hear who you support and why.