Chelsea Transfer Target
May 1, 2018, 7:43 PM
Location: North West Lincolnshire
Team(s): Scotter United (Scunthorpe League), AFC Telford(home town club),
Post #1 of 2
Whilst staying in Florence on a family break I managed to fit in two games:-
Sat 28th April
Empoli 1 Novara 1
Series B Adm 2 Euros Free 44 page A5 prog Att 8626
Empoli is a fairly dour looking small town, a half hour train ride west of Florence, 9,60 euros return. The Stadio Carlo Castellani is an easy twenty minute walk from the station to the north east of the town. It's a stadium of two permanent main stands and temporary stands at either end, one of which housed the 24 visiting fans and the other had been opened as the two main stand were sold out. Seats were being sold from a small office near the main stand at a mere two euros, seventy eight euros less than I had to pay the following day.
A defeat for Palermo the previous evening meant that promotion was assured for the hosts so everyone was in buoyant mood, even more so when they took the lead. However the balloon was deflated a little on the stroke of half time when the home left back inexplicably headed the ball across his own area and it was swept home by Puscas. The second half was played out at a stroll as the afternoon heat took a toll and when the news came through that Parma were losing, the point gained was enough to clinch the title.
Sun 29th April
Fiorentina 3 Napoli 0
Serie A Adm 80 euros Free A4 48 page prog Att 26000+
I tried to buy tickets via Listicket, the official distributor for the club but when I left home they were still only being sold to club members. However on the day before the game I tracked down the city ticket office located on the first floor of the fruit and veg market at San Lorenzo, about five minutes walk from the Duomo. I was only able to buy in the Maratone, opposite the main stand on the halfway line and while the seats were small and the leg room minimal, the view of the action from our seats high up in the stand and of the surrounding hills was superb. We went to and from the Stadio Artemio Franchi by taxi from the main station for ten euros each way. The surrounding streets appeared to be cordoned off to traffic so we were dropped by the Station Campo di Marti, ten minutes stroll from the ground. There's numerous food and drink stands around and a club shop across the road behind the main stand. Also stretching along the wall behind that stand is the ongoing tribute to the late David's Astori a wall of scarves, shirts etc, a moving sight.
This was a crucial game for the visitors who were four points behind Juventus with a game in hand, but they had a disastrous start when the lumbering Koulibaly was caught on his heels and gave away a penalty and received a yellow card. The home players were incensed as they thought that it should have been a straight red and the ref consulted VAR. The net result was that a red was indeed appropriate but that the foul was outside the box - no penalty!
So Napoli had 82 minutes to play with with only ten men and seemed deflated from the outset, creating little and behaving petulantly. The home team took the lead on 34 mins but would have been further ahead if not for an inspired performance from Pepe Reina. Simeone got his second on 62 minutes when he reacted first after yet another block from Reina and clinched his hat trick in the dying seconds.
We flew into Pisa Airport on Easyjet from Luton for £46 each well in advance. The airport is, to put it bluntly, a dump, but but as the Pisamover, an automated monorail, takes you to Pisa Centrale station in just over five minutes, it opens up numerous hopping options. From there, it takes about an hour by train to Florence, a beautiful city, albeit crowded and noisy. The main station is central and the city is fairly small and easy to navigate. On the way back we had time to spend a couple of hours in Pisa to see the famous Leaning Tower, and of course the Arena Garibaldi, home to the local Serie C team, only five minutes walk from the Tower.
Where's the 'ignore this poster' button?