Sunday, 9 November 2008

That's about 28p a goal!

We did a few spontaneous things before we left the UK. When you realise you might not be able to do something again for a while it tends to make you a bit more decisive and proactive. One thing I did was take a trip to White Hart Lane for a UEFA Cup tie between Tottenham Hotspur and PSV Eindhoven. It was a week or so after Juande’s finest hour (or two) and the night they presented the Carling Cup to the fans. The team then conspired to lose a disappointing tie, and dropped out of the competition after the away leg. Probably the first nail in coffin for Ramos. Anyway, the point of the story is not the result but the price. I paid about £50 for the ticket, and after adding train travel, match programme, scarf and food probably didn’t get much change out of a hundred pounds.

Today we attended a seven-goal thriller in Mostar. Local side HŠK Zrinjski are top of the Premier Liga BiH. Finish first and they could be playing Champions League football next season. Getting tickets was as easy as walking up to a hole in the wall and handing over 5KM. That’s two quid, or less than half the price of a McDonald’s meal in the UK. For that you get to pick your seat – we were four rows back, on the half-way line – or you can take the 2KM option and stand on the opposite side to the grandstand. Zrinjski were 2-0 up after twenty minutes and looked much the better side. Yet somehow they went in at half-time with the scores level. After the break Zvijezda were undoubtedly hungrier and by the hour mark were leading. Then things heated up. By the last ten minutes the ref was reaching for his pocket so regularly it was hardly worth putting his cards away. Then in the 89th minute Zrinjski struck; the stadium erupted. And as if to prove the old adage about lightening wrong, a second header two minutes later sealed a dramatic comeback in injury time. Top-notch entertainment – and well worth the money!

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