I have to admit, there aren’t many games (if any) in my lifetime I haven’t looked forward to as much as this one. I can see Manchester City, in the form they’re in, possibly going into double digits if we play like we did against Everton. Remaining positive, Ex has revealed that there are some players being given a chance so let’s hope they stand up for themselves and play well.
Stadium: Etihad Stadium
Address: Rowsley St, Manchester, M11 3FF
Primarily built for the 2002 Commonwealth games, this stadium shows how a former athletics stadium can really be transformed into a well-built multi-purpose stadium (no digs there), with it being used for football, rugby and music concerts since its opening. The facilities, especially since Manchester City’s famous takeover by Sheikh Mansour, have been developed and improved non-stop and now includes a famous glass tunnel. Spectators can pay to see the tunnel through one-way glass before kick-off and at half time then go and watch the game in an executive box while it’s being played. The stadium and campus are becoming more and more world class, testament to City’s progression and class.
Train: The Etihad stadium has a metrolink stop on the East Manchester line called Etihad Campus which is a 5 minute walk away from the away end of the stadium. Trams, regular on a match day, can also be caught from Victoria or Piccadilly railway stations. A return journey from Piccadilly Station to Etihad Campus costs £3 for adults, £1.40 for children and only lasts 8 minutes.
From Euston it’s just over 2 hours to Piccadilly Manchester and you can catch a direct train there. Despite the game being on a Sunday, there are trains from Manchester quite late (the latest leaving Manchester Picadilly for London at 22.16).
Car: When on the M6, leave at Junction 19 and follow the A556 towards Stockport and join the M56. Continue onto the M60 heading towards Ashton Under Lyne. Leave at Junction 23 and take the A635 towards Manchester. From here, gion the A662 and stay on it for a few miles, you will then see the stadium to your right.
Parking: There is limited parking at the stadium which costs £10 per car, or £20 for a minibus. The East Car Park is nearest the away entrance. As with most Premier League stadiums there is a residents permit scheme in the surrounding streets, so ensure you are parking legally. There are unofficial car parks that charge around £5 per car nearby.
Food and drink
Most places around the ground are for home supports, even the FanZone at the ground is mostly home supporters. The Stanley (Sports Bar) pub does let in away fans but only limited amounts, this pub is a 10 minute walk from the stadium. This pub also charge a £1 admittance fee, but children are free.
Townley on Albert Street is only a five minute walk from the stadium and has a good atmosphere. It’s recommended to not wear your clubs colours here, however. The Manchester City Supports Club have their own bar opposite the North Stand where they sometimes allow away fans.
With West Ham and Manchester City getting on well (from what I have seen on social media), I can see no problem with supporters sharing bars and we can all share our love for Pablo Zabaleta.
Stay safe on your journey and enjoy the football City will no doubt put on show. You were all incredible against Everton mid-week, you did the club proud even at 4-0 down.
Come On You Irons! -@CraigPodevin