Monday, 27 January 2014

Our big FA Cup day did not disappoint AFCB v LFC

As usual it was going to be a long drive down to Bournemouth from Redhill. It was the early start of 6.30am which we were not so happy about - thanks ITV for the early kick off time! Still, sleepy-eyed we hustled into the car and were soon past Winchester and on to Bournemouth. Stephen and Robert were dressed for the cold but totally buzzing for today's big match. Their aim was to fill their programmes with as many autographs as they could get so first stop was an early visit to the club shop.
Stephen asks where is everyone?
Robert watches young players training.
Stephen along side the Ted MacDougall side of the ground. 
While there was less than 20 people hanging around the front concourse at Dean Court at 8.30am, we decided to hurry into the shop and buy the programmes as quick as we could to ensure a good spot on the barriers by reception for the rest of the morning. We were pleased to leave the shop with a handful of programmes and a joint AFCB/Liverpool scarf - hey I supported both clubs in my youth, so I make no excuse for purchasing a souvenir for the day - it all goes to help out club!
Early on the front ropes, Stephen and Robert set about autograph hunting.
Stephen tries to hide the joy of  getting Ryan Fraser's signature.
Tommy Elphick is loaded up with goods. Not that fair to ask
him to sign with his arms full of stuff - but he manages it.
Then we waited for players and celebrities to arrive. We spotted young Ryan Fraser first and nabbed his autograph. Tommy Elphick was next and I got him to sign my programme as well and wished him luck for the game.
Charlie Daniels with Stephen.
Charlie Daniels signs Robert's programme.
It as at this point we saw a Liverpool fan arrive selling his fanzine magazine which caused the boys to laugh as he had to hold his arm up for a long time with his fanzine waiting for any early pool fans to arrive. Charlie Daniels came in with what looked like his bathroom bag. We then spotted Stephane Zubar by his car but before we could ask him about how his knee was and if he was back training, he was off!
Stephane Zubar makes a surprise appearance. ZUBAR!!!
Jason Tindall was clutching a pair of trainers so perhaps he was hoping to play. Sorry Jason, not this time. By now it was getting busy. The official photographers were about the place and asking us to pose for their respective publications. Chairman, Jeff Moystn arrived in his grey suit and talked to us for a short while. I praised him for his recent interview on All Departments and he thanked us for our support for the club. We wished him luck for the day.
Jason Tindall is keen to get going.
Jeff Mostyn is calm as ever.
The photographers move in.
Brett Pitman gets ready to sign.
Steve Cook - no hanging about.
Lewis Grabban looks forward to playing Liverpool.
Brett Pitman was all smiles as he came over to us. Steve Cook was in a hurry and dashed straight in, but Lewis Grabban was happy to fill the boys programmes up with another signature. Andrew Surman asked us if we were feeling all right and despite our sleepy eyes we said "yes, simply buzzing for the game!" We asked more importantly how he was doing? And he said," Just fine, looking forward to it."
Andrew Surman makes a tour to come and talk to us.
Ryan Allsop spots a regular AFCB fan.
Eunan O'Kane says hello.
Simon Francis - sharp exit right.
Gabriel Clarke was particularly pleased to talk to us.
Elliott Ward - what has he got in that bag?
Laurie McMenamin enters the Main Reception.
Allsop, O'Kane and Simon Francis followed in before we had a little chat with Gabriel Clarke of ITV. We joking said we did not have his picture in the programme but we desperately wanted his signature, so he very kindly came over and said he would do the biggest signature then on the back cover and use all the space up. He even asked the boys names and ensured he had them right and wrote best wishes. Elliott Ward then came in with what we reckon was the biggest man bag of the day. He was followed by Southampton ex-manger Laurie McMenamin - maybe some of his 1976 club luck could rub off on the Cherries I thought. 
Liverpool's team coach arrives.
The Liverpool coach finally arrived next and we got ready with the surge from behind pressing us right up against the ropes by this stage. Off came the Liverpool stars one by one, but it was a shame that none of them stopped to sign anything. The camera men were right in front of us now but we tried to take some video footage of the players coming off the coach (I apologise if you hear any foul language on the videos - I don't have the software to bleep it out). 

WARNING BAD language: Brendan Rodgers, Martin Skrtel and Martin Kelly arrive.
(plus camera man who would not get out of the way!)

WARNING BAD language: More Liverpool players come off the coach at Dean Court including:
Steven Gerrard, Jordan Henderson, Philippe Coutinho, Raheem Stirling, Victor Moses, Brad Jones, Iago Aspas,
Kolo Toure, Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez with drink.

We decided to go around the ground after that to take in some of the atmosphere and goings on as the fans turned up. We headed for the North stand where ITV had constructed their hideaway commentary box. Who should we see but Roy Keane waving and smiling at the fans below.
The ground is filling up now.
Roy Keane shares a joke with fans. Sadly he didn't have his boots with him.
The Ted MacDougall stand. This is as close as e could get.
Further round we were diverted away from the Ted MacDougall stand as only Liverpool supporters with tickets were allowed anywhere near it. The security checks looked rigorous and yet once again away supporters managed to smuggle in a smoke grenade which went off after the first goal.

Steve Fletcher in his nice big coat!
We entered the Family stand and had a quick bite to eat while the players warmed up. We saw Steve Fletcher getting interviewed in front of us with the lady interviewer having to watch her step in her non too clever footwear choice.

Eunan O'Kane speaks to the cameras. 
Eddie Howe does his pitch side interview for the
cameras. It looks like the lady can't keep her eyes open - spellbound by Eddie's good looks.

Teams come on to the pitch at Dean Court. Robert's arm makes a guest appearance.
You'll see all our photographs of the player warm ups and the crowd in our Match Day Gallery.

All Departments' Kangaroo Court of AFCB 0 v 2 Liverpool is live to view at All Departments website or on our side bar.

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