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Walsall

Ground: Bescot Stadium (Banks´s Stadium)

Visits: 1

Date: 1st April 2013

Match: Walsall  - Coventry  4-0  (League 1)

Attendance: 7 504

 

In December 2009 I was at the Bescot Stadium (Banks's Stadium) for Walsall vs Norwich. An hour before kick-off that match was called off because of a frozen pitch. On Easter Monday 2013 I finally got my chance to (re)visit Bescot Stadium. Walsall vs Coventry City is a West Midlands derby and I knew there would be a bigger than usual crowd. I bought my ticket in advance and since there are plenty of pillars obstructing the view I carefully choose my seat. In the end I had one of the best seats in the ground, next to the Press Box. My journey to Walsall started at 10.27 on Monday morning as I for the second day in a row boarded a Birmingham bound train at Manchester Piccadilly. After changing to a local train at New Street station I was outside the Bescot Stadium shortly before 1 pm. Bescot Stadium has its own train station making this a very easy ground to visit by train. For 104 years Walsall played at Fellows Park but in 1990 the club moved to the Bescot Stadium. The ground is all-seated with an overall capacity of 11 300. The home end (North Stand) is two-tiered at really dwarfs the other stands. Unfortunately the three smaller stands are full of supporting pillars obstructing the view.


Since the weather in Walsall the first day of April reminded me more about Sweden than England (cold!) I decided to pay the £2 entrance fee in order to gain access to the Saddlers club. This quite big pub/restaurant is situated next to the ground and was packed with fans. I watched Chelsea knock Manchester U out of the FA Cup before entering the ground. It was only 3-4 degrees but I had plenty of warm clothes in my rucksack and I wasn't freezing too much. Coventry brought 3 000 (?) fans to the match and they were given two stands. Moving out (and the back in) of the Ricoh Arena, entering administration and being docked 10 points it is testing times at the moment for Sky Blues fans. The fans at the Bescot Stadium did their best to support their team this afternoon though. Walsall played some great football and scored the first goal after some nice moves and passes. The second half had barely started when Walsall were given a penalty, 2-0. Coventry then had a player sent off before Walsall scored two more goals. The match finished 4-0 to Walsall and the home players were given a standing ovation as they left the pitch.


I was of course disappointed back in 2009 when I missed out on a big match. With an attendance of 7 500, by far the biggest crowd of the season at Bescot Stadium, for today's match I was more pleased this time around as I walked back to the local train station. I had to queue for 10-15 minutes before reaching the platform but wasn't too bothered. This was after all the day I finally revisited the Bescot Stadium. Tomorrow I leave Manchester for Middlesbrough. Middlesbrough vs Peterborough might not be the most exciting of matches but I will yet again meet up with my German friend Andreas. This time I will (hopefully) be in a better condition than last time he saw me. That food poisoning in Genoa if you remember. 

 

bescot stadium, outside

Bescot Stadium, Rear of the main stand

 

biljettkö

Queuing for tickets

 

saddlers club

Inside the Saddlers Club

 

north stand

North Stand

 

east stand

East Stand

 

south stand

South Stand

 

west stand

West (Main) Stand

 

press box

Press box

 

mascot

Mascot

 

teams entering the pitch

Teams entering the pitch

 

north stand2

North Stand

 

bescot stadium, vy

View of Bescot Stadium

 

avspark

Kick-off

 

east stand1

East Stand

 

coventryfans2

Coventry fans

 

spelbild

View of play

 

south stand1

South Stand

 

coventryfans

Coventry fans

 

pano, bescot stadium3

Pano

 

pano, bescot stadium5

Pano