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Swansea

Ground: Liberty Stadium

Visits: 1

Date: 1st January 2013

Match: Swansea - Aston Villa  2-2  (Premier League)

Attendance: 20 406

 

Before this trip I had visited 19 of the current Premiership grounds. Missing only Liberty Stadium my main target was of course a visit to Swansea. Last year, Swansea´s first ever season in the Premiership, I twice failed in getting a ticket but this time around I was more successful. As soon as tickets went on sale for the New Year´s Day fixture between Swansea and Aston Villa I was online purchasing a ticket. Having been based in London for three days I made the 3 h 20 min train journey on the last day of 2012. I arrived in Swansea by 3pm and staying at the Grand Hotel I only had a 50 m walk to my accommodation for the night. Being New Year´s Eve there was plenty of people staying in the hotel and the hotel´s bar and restaurant seemed to have a very good day. Swansea is of course situated in Wales and after a (very) late breakfast on New Year`s Day I did a sightseeing tour of the city centre. All signs are in both English and Welsh and Welsh do seem to be a very strange language. After "weeks of non-stop rain" (quote form the hotel receptionist) 2013 started with sunshine and very nice weather. The streets of Swansea were very calm and quiet and down by the waterfront you could really enjoy the nice weather without bumping into people all the time.

 

Liberty Stadium was opened in 2005 and has an all-seated capacity of 20 600. For most matches the ground is sold-out and since leaving their old ground, Vetch Field, Swansea have been a club on the up. After quite a long walk I was eventually outside the ground by 1 pm, two hours before kick-off. As I was queuing to pick up my ticket I was twice offered a ticket for Everton away, Swansea fans unable to go I guess. My seat for Swansea vs Aston Villa was in the northeast corner of the ground but being in row W I had a very good view of the action. For this match Aston Villa only took half the away allocation, otherwise I would have been really close to the away supporters. It turned out I was with the most vocal home supporters and I was actually standing through-out the match. The match itself started with a bang. Swansea were 1-0 up straight away and then hit the inside of the post twice. "We should be 4-0 up by now" my seat neighbour said after 15 minutes. I agreed and couldn´t believe how poor Villa was defending. In the 44th minute Aston Villa had a shot on goal and it went in! 1-1 at half-time, not at all reflecting the match so far. The second half was much more even and Villa looked much better (compared to the first half). With five minutes to go Villa was awarded a penalty. 2-1 to Aston Villa and the home supporters couldn´t believe what was about to happen. "Losing to Villa when we have been having so many chances? Unfair". In the 93rd minute Swansea finally scored their second goal and Liberty Stadium exploded in wild celebrations. The match ended 2-2 and this was a very good and entertaining match to finish off the Premiership with. With the atmosphere inside Liberty Stadium being quite good as well I can warmly recommend a visit. After the match it was back to the train station for a 4-hour train journey to Manchester. Tomorrow I the leave for Glasgow, my final destination on this tour.

 

borgsruin

Old castle

 

fisherman

Fisherman

 

waterfront

Waterfront

 

liberty stadium

Liberty Stadium

 

liberty stadium2

Rear of the West Stand

 

liberty stadium1

Stadiwm Liberty

 

liberty stadium3

Rear of the East Stand

 

match

Football for me!

 

east stand

East Stand

 

south stand

South Stand

 

west stand

West Stand

 

north stand

North Stand

 

swansea flags

Flags

 

east stand2

East Stand

 

avspark

Kick-off

 

south stand2

South Stand

 

1-0

1-0

 

liberty stadium, vy2

View of Liberty Stadium

 

west stand3

West Stand

 

spelbild

View of play

 

north stand4

North Stand

 

pano, liberty stadium1

Pano

 

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Pano