Welcome to my blog detailing my groundhopping exploits. My aim is to visit all football grounds in England (Premier league to the 8th tier) Scotland (SPL to 3rd Division) and the Welsh premier league I may also add grounds from other sports or countries. I hope you enjoy reading.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Doncaster Rovers - Keepmoat Stadium

Match - Doncaster Rovers 1-3 Birmingham City 30/03/12
Competition - NPower Championship
Admission - £27 (East Stand)
Scarf - £8
Attendance - 8,656
Food - Chicken Balti Pie & Pint £5 - 7/10
Ground No - 107
Ground Rating - 7/10

My apologies for this entry taking such a time to get posted I am moving house and have been without Internet and therefore not able to update.

This was the first game that I was watching this weekend where I also attended my first two games north of the border. It was also my first ever groundhopping weekend. I had been planning this trip for some time and was due to be going with my Dad and Will. Unfortunately my dad had come down with a nasty virus a couple of weeks prior and was still suffering and unable to attend. So at around 4pm me and Will set off for Doncaster, we had managed to invite another friend of ours for the weekend but he could not make the game on Friday due to work but said he would get the train and meet us in Doncaster after the game.

On arriving in Doncaster around 2 1/2 hours later after a very easy drive up the A1 we checked in to our Premier Inn to find that the ground was no more than 200m from the hotel below is the view from Wills room.

After settling in the rooms we decided to go to the pub next door to the hotel for a quick pint. The place was rammed full of Birmingham fans and were a good 3-4 deep at the bar so decided to leave it and went straight to the ground.

After a quick stroll round the ground and a visit to the club shop to buy the mandatory scarf. Will can honestly say he has one from every football ground he has ever visited (this is only his 3rd), we made our way to the correct turnstile and entered and headed straight for the food counter. We both had a pie and a pint for £5.

After eating and drinking we made our way to our seats. The ground is very similar to a lot of modern "bowl type" stadiums and is all seated with all corners filled in looks very smart but quite boring.

The ground is single tiered all the way round with the majority of seats painted red with Doncaster written in white at each end. There are also a number of boxes behind the seats on both the East and West stands which are situated on either touchline, with the West stand having the team dugouts in front of the seats which I would expect would impede some fans views.There are also two small scoreboards in the North East and South West corners at the back of the stands. Away fans are situated in the North Stand and Birmingham City fans brought along a good number of fans for this game.

The match was between two teams who were needing points for very different reasons Doncaster were sitting bottom of the championship and Birmingham were fighting to make sure they get a Play-off place come the end of the season. 

The game itself started very brightly and Donny had managed to quieten the very impressive Birmingham support down when Piquionne, On loan from West Ham nodded in a right sided cross in the first 5 minutes. Doncaster's captain the well known El Hadji Diouf, who was being booed every time he touched the ball, something I'm sure he gets at every ground that he visits, then entered into some friendly banter with the away support. Doncaster won a corner which Diouf went to take right in front of the visiting support. There were Boos from the away section and massive cheers from the home support, Diouf then hid from Birmingham's fans behind the assistant and then the corner flag and finally greeted with huge laughs and cheers from the home support bent down with his rear facing the away end.

Mr Diouf (Centre)
Although Doncaster did play some nice football at times those times were very far a few between and Birmingham started to take control of the game equalising with a scrappy goal from a corner after 15 minutes and the game remained level up until half time.

The second half was all Birmingham though and they made a number of chances before they finally scored the goal they deserved. It was a very good one too, Chris Burke was allowed to run by the Doncaster defenders and cut in from the right and curled the ball in the bottom left hand corner from around 20 yards. the away side then made it 3 with 10 minutes to go when Marlon King, who had been excellent all evening, evaded the offside trap to drill the ball home under the Doncaster keeper.

Birmingham very much deserved there win and I can see why Doncaster are likely to be relegated come the end of the season after watching the second half performance.

After the match we made our way to the Beefeater pub next to the hotel and were joined not long later by Phil, and saw the night out with a few drinks before heading back to the hotel and ready for our early morning start to go to the second game of the weekend in Glasgow 4.5 hours drive from Doncaster.

No comments:

Post a Comment