My First Trip to Craven Cottage

Discussion in 'Fulham FC News and Notes' started by MisterF, Nov 6, 2011.

  1. MisterF

    MisterF New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2011
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
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    Hello Fulham USA faithful, I have returned in once piece from my recent trip to England! I can definitely say that if I wasn't a lifelong fan before I went on this trip then I certainly am now!

    We arrived on the morning of Friday, Oct 21st which was a lot later than expected due to a plane cancellation so we had to scramble to our tour on about 1 hour of sleep in the past two days. Luckily we made it and had perfect weather for the tour.

    We entered through the ridiculously narrow doorways near the Hammersmith End and proceeded up some stairs to check out the balcony where the TV hosts and crew broadcast from. Definitely a great view.

    We then went around to the back of the stadium along to river where I got my first glimpse of the Michael Jackson statue. It's just as ridiculous in person but I can assure you that it's very tucked away and not quite as obvious as I had originally pictured.

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    We checked out the hospitality suites along the river and then proceeded down to the field where we got to sit along the team benches.
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    After that, we got to go inside the Cottage and out of the balcony where all the VIPs and families sit for matches. Underneath the Cottage, we went in a checked out the dressing rooms which were actually pretty small and saw the medical facilities as well.

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    Our tour ended underneath the Johnny Haynes stand and fed us into the team shop of course! I'm still not sold on the jerseys so I bought a sweatshirt and scarf instead.

    After some sight seeing in London, the Everton match finally came on Sunday. It was amazing to be able to walk with the other hordes of fans through Bishops Park to get to the stadium. It was definitely a unique experience compared to other sporting events I've been to.

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    The weather couldn't have been more perfect which I was very pleased about since I had chosen seats that were exposed to the elements. We were 5 rows up off the field in section VL of the Riverside stand. We were actually right next to the Everton bench and even had their reserves sitting in front of us!

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    I still am having trouble actually believing where I was sitting and what I was watching in front of me. After years of watching on TV and imagining what it would be like, it was a weird feeling to actually physically be sitting there with so many familiar sights yet a place you know you've never been.

    Anyway, as I'm sure you watched, the match could have started a lot better. Unfortunately, Everton's quick first goal really quieted the crowd but I was still crossing my fingers that I would get to see a goal. Luckily, Ruiz came through in the second half and the crowd erupted. There was definitely a chill that went through my spine. I can only imagine what the place was like for the Juventus match a couple years ago. It's an addicting feeling.

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    We looked so much better in the second half that it's a shame that it ended the way it did. I still cant believe Bobby missed that open net! Despite the heartbreaking loss, it was still an experience of a lifetime. It's one of the few times that I didnt even care to see a win or loss. I just wanted to be there and experience the sights and sounds that I had been dreaming of for years. I definitely cant wait to go back some day!

    Here's a link to the entire set of Fulham pictures
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/kidacbj/se ... 915349089/

    The rest of our trip was great as well. We saw tons of sights in London and then traveled all across the country. We spent a day in Windsor, Oxford, Bath, Derby, York and even took a trip to Stonehenge.
     
    #1
  2. dcheather

    dcheather Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    Wow, great report MisterF! Love the photos. Sorry you didn't see a Fulham victory though. :cry:
     
    #2
  3. SoCalJoe

    SoCalJoe Well-Known Member

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    Sep 5, 2006
    Location:
    Walnut, CA
    Great pics and report :!: :!: Thanks for sharing Mister F and welcome back.
     
    #3
  4. jumpkutz

    jumpkutz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2011
    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    Wow, wow, wow. Great pics and report. And great weather to boot. You guys hit the mother lode (except for, of course, a victory, but, hey, that would have been too perfect). Definitely a new addition to my bucket list.
     
    #4
  5. RDG

    RDG Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    That was really nice.

    That was what being a Fulham fan is all about. We have been blessed to have been 10 years in the top flight and here's to many more!

    No matter what, we've always got one of the best venues in THE WORLD for a sporting event and we are all part of the FFC community.

    (Oh, does it dawn on anyone that I am trying to be optimistic after today's match?? I am very depressed.)
     
    #5
  6. dcheather

    dcheather Administrator

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    Jul 29, 2005
    I think we all are...what a punch to the gut that match was. :(
     
    #6
  7. jimsig

    jimsig Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2008
    Location:
    Boston
    Just what I needed after 2 losses yesterday, Fulham of course and the NE Patriots which I was at. Next time I get to the Cottage I am definatly going to take a tour and of course catch another match. WIth any luck I'll be able to see Dempsey score the winning goal again.

    The photos look great!
     
    #7
  8. Clevelandmo

    Clevelandmo Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2007
    Thanks for the report and pictures, really great.

    I'm sorry the game result was not spectacular. The same thing happened to me. Glad to hear you saw parts of the country other than London. As much as I like London, I like being out in the country even more.
     
    #8
  9. sullytex

    sullytex Member

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2008
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Helluva 1st trip to the Cottage. Can't believe I never took the tour in the 2years I was there. I too had to witness a loss on my first trip to CC as well against New Castle. Great pics, awesome trip.

    Need to get a few lager louts to take that statue and fire it into the Thames. Used to love to come down from hsmith stands to enjoy a pie and a pint by the Thames at half but now it's a bit tainted.
     
    #9
  10. jumpkutz

    jumpkutz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2011
    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    I just saw the rest of the pics on flickr yesterday, and I nearly spooged. (Can you say that on the internet, spooge)? They were all great. Now I want to go REALLY BADLY! Thus, I broached the subject of our 30 year wedding anniversary in 2014 with the missus this week. The politicking and schmoozing has officially begun! Seriously, great report and pics (again), you guys.
     
    #10
  11. nevzter

    nevzter Well-Known Member

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    Mar 5, 2007
    Location:
    A City by a Bay
    Thanks for sharing your experience and the photos.
     
    #11
  12. MisterF

    MisterF New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2011
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    lol nothing wrong with that! Hopefully you can make it happen soon. I had to do some convincing myself but the wife was a good sport. Unfortunately, the away match against Wigan was out of the question after a tour AND a home match. I tried though :mrgreen:


    The trip was worth every penny. I think everything finally sunk in watching the Tottenham match back here in the States this weekend. After being there only a few days before, watching on TV felt completely different. Remembering the people, the sights & the sounds of a matchday just makes you feel that much closer to everything.
     
    #12
  13. jumpkutz

    jumpkutz Well-Known Member

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    #13
  14. jumpkutz

    jumpkutz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Louisville, KY
  15. MisterF

    MisterF New Member

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    #15
  16. SCFulhamFan

    SCFulhamFan Active Member

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    How much you suppose a camera like that sets one back?!
     
    #16
  17. MisterF

    MisterF New Member

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    #17
  18. SteveFakeBlood

    SteveFakeBlood Member

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    Feb 8, 2010
    Location:
    Broward County , FL (from DuPage County, IL)
    I know I'm late to the party, but just saw this post and wanted to compliment you on the pics, they're great. Poor result, but the tour looked great and the weather was nice. It's been 7 years since my first and only trip to the Cottage and like everyone else who read this, it definitely has me jonesing to go back. I think it'll be a few more years before time and money permit, however...

    ~ Steve
     
    #18
  19. MisterF

    MisterF New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2011
    Location:
    Columbus, OH

    Thanks Steve! It's only been a month but I'm already dying to go back so I know what you mean! Watching tonight's match gave me chills and the best part is that I can now actually imagine what it would have been like to be there. I will definitely be back someday!
     
    #19
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