Groundhopweekend October 2004
On a Friday afternoon my brother picked me up in
After a significant detour and search expedition we finally made it at 20.25 to the remarkable Stade de la Licorne. This remarkable stadium has been the home of the local
We bought a ticket for the stand behind the goal for 7 euro, and found out at arrival that the home team were already 1-0 up. Having seen that all was well, I headed downstairs and rushed on the Merguez sausages, a compulsory snack at any French stadium, although this time it would not sit well on my tormented stomach.
In the second half we and the circa 3.000 other spectators (minus the ca. 25 away supporters) were very well entertained.
Five goals for 7 euro, now that is good value for your money! Moreover, we saw an absolutely unique stadium too. Only the sausages were a disappointment. In short, also the French Ligue 2 is worth visiting!
FC Wohlen – FC Baulmes (
After the pleasing French game we had to drive several hours to make sure that we would be back on schedule for our next game. Indeed, after only a couple of hours sleep we continued driving on Saturday morning to make sure we would make the ‘top match’ in the Swiss Challenge League (Second Division) between FC Wohlen and FC Baulmes.
Around 17.00, a half hour before kick-off, we parked in front of the brand-new Stadion Niedermatten, comparable to an (brand-new) accommodation of an average Third Division team in the
Despite the amateurish setting, the biting wind, and the fact that it was a game between the numbers 12 and 15 in the Swiss Second Division, we were well amused by the game. The ball technique of most players – mainly French and Italian speaking Swiss – was very good and both teams liked to pass the ball around.
While there were not many clear-cut chances, both teams had chances to win the game. In the end, it would be the visitors who would take the three points home. Against the run of play FC Baulmes score the 0-1, which was also the final score.
1. FC Kaiserslautern – Arminia Bielefeld (
After another late night, visiting a concert of football rock bands at the Swiss-Italian border, we were back in the car at 10.00 to take route to
Well in time we parked our car near the stadium and started the traditional climbing of the Betzenberg, the steep hill in the middle of town on which the stadium is built (and after which it is named, at least among football fans). Have reached the top, it was time to get us a ticket. As the game was on Sunday, and the opponent was Arminia Bielefeld, the stadium was far from sold out (in fact, only some 32.000 people would turn up). This notwithstanding, it cost me quite some time to get us tickets for the long side of the pitch – 29 euro for a seat pretty high up the stand. After having sampled the stadium snacks and bough a shawl for a friend (a Kaisi fan) we took our places and started to enjoy the fanatic fans at the Westribune.
Before the game the 1.FCK was at the bottom of the 1. Bundesliga (First Division), while Arminia Bielefeld was sixth and, together with
Again, I really regret the renovation of the Fritz Walter Stadion, as again one of the classic football temples in the world has disappeared. Still, the club needs money, etc. We can only hope that when the renovation is complete, and the Westtribune has also become an all-seater stand, the atmosphere will still be as good as in the past, and the Betzenberg will stay a football temple.