Home Awayday

Everton 3 - 1 Burnley
Well, once again, not wanting to steal Paul Traill's chips, I thought I'd post about my trip for last night's game. To be fair, I suppose I can do a reverse of his fine away reports as I have to do the opposite when I make the 410-mile round-trip to Goodison Park for a home fixture.

Apologies in advance if some of this repeats what I posted on some of the match threads yesterday. I'll stay away from the football as that is more than covered by Lyndon's & Michael's reports and the associated comments as always. I said yesterday and have before, but I still don't know how you do it, Michael!

With tickets bought a couple of weeks ago but not declared to my better half, I left myself right in the proverbial dog house by only declaring with 24 hours notice that I was travelling and stopping over in Liverpool. She knows me, she'll forgive me (I think). She'll do what she always does and take the equal amount I expended out of the bank account. Expensive business, Everton. But they're worth it.

So, dogs walked at 6:30 am as always, a nod from both that we were going to win (one more optimistic than the other) and then me heading off to London with my tail between my legs as this really hadn't gone down well. From my perspective, I'm now fortunate enough to be able to go and see Everton more regularly than I have been due to my previous occupation. To my good lady, I'm apparently behaving like the child she knew when she first met me (I was actually 20). To me, I've never changed. Circular argument and discussion.

Wetherspoons, Marks & Spencers at Euston and onto the train. Totally messed up with the type of ticket I purchased, so there's another hit to the wallet. I had arranged to meet a couple of the ToffeeWeb gang at the Saddle Inn, and the plan was to check into the Atlantic Tower first to drop my daypack off but, due to some work stuff, I was a bit later than I wanted to be.

So straight to the Saddle Inn it was and the daypack was going the match with me, laptop and all. Arriving at Lime Street and, in my wisdom, I thought I'd get a train to James Street and catch a taxi. I realised that I am a spoiled London resident who just thinks you can go around tapping your phone or card everywhere to pay for stuff, but the rather robust station lady told me I had to actually buy a ticket. But got there for a swift one with Peter & Co before walking to the ground. Should have just got a taxi from Lime Street.

Now, I'm delighted and excited about our plans to move to Bramley-Moore Dock, but there's something special about Goodison Park at night under the lights. Three days off my 50th, it was as magical to me last night as it was when I was 7 years old. Once we got going, the atmosphere was electric in a way that only Goodison can deliver. We're no choir and we don't have a songbook like our red cousins or others, but on our day we are a wall of noise and sheer passion.

After the match and negotiating a few tricky Burnley fans, I opted for a nostalgic walk across Stanley Park to go to my Grandad's old local, the Arkles. There were a few blues in that red pub, but also a few red locals talking about us getting carried away and how hypocritical we are about Benitez. Whatever. I'll judge him towards the end of the season. Bitter Reds.

Eventually grabbed an Uber and made it back to the hotel for a very late check-in. Quick power nap (4 hours) then a walk across the city centre meeting some interesting characters still finishing their night out and some hard-as-nails Seagulls before catching the early train back to London.

A long and expensive 24 hours but, as always with Everton, worth every penny and every minute. Aston Villa next but, as some of you know, that fixture puts me in even more dodgy ground than defying marital "advice" and "getting down to Goodison Park". Oooohhh!

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Reader Comments (18)

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Jerome Shields
1 Posted 14/09/2021 at 12:28:13
Thanks for sharing your experiences Danny. Brought back some memories.
Dave Abrahams
2 Posted 14/09/2021 at 15:13:23
Danny, me and my sons think we are good Everton supporters, reading about your efforts, time and money spent on getting to see the Blues, absolutely amazes me, plus your wife doubling the costs!! You’re some supporter Danny, I thought of you at half time last night, honestly, and wondered what you were feeling like sitting up in The Upper Bullens Road Stand, wasn’t feeling too clever myself,worse when Burnley scored: and then the crowd started backing the Blues and we quickly equalised through Michael Keane, and then more and more magic as we poured it on and left Burnley not knowing where they were, I imagine you you were in Wonderland at this stage and stayed in that state for the rest of your stay in your home City.

So pleased for you Danny, and myself, made up your trip left you with magic memories and your whole trip was well worth while. I think you are a special supporter, like those who travel hundreds of miles from far and wide to get to Goodison Park for every home game, not forgetting the thousands of fans who go to see all Everton’s games, home and away season after season, no matter what state the club is in. Absolutely no glory hunters among them, just solid, genuine true Everton supporters.

I’ll say a prayer for you Danny, that your wife doesn’t go on too much about your magical trip back home, take care Danny, best wishes.

Danny O’Neill
3 Posted 14/09/2021 at 15:56:08
Thanks Dave. I'm no better an Evertonian than any of us. We are all brethren.

Like you and your sons, we follow because we love. I did when I was young and used my paper round money to pay for my entrance fee and then convinced my mother to pay for a season ticket as long as I gave her some back over time!

Without getting carried away, it was magic last night and no matter how brief, a trip to the city of my birth is always special and is more so when it's to see Everton. And to see them win is just a bonus. Half time I was impassive. I was concerned when they scored, but deep down I knew we had enough to beat them. I kind of sensed it. Believed it. Hoped it. I don't care, it happened!

Jon Harding
4 Posted 14/09/2021 at 16:48:56
Where were you sat (stood) Danny?

I don't see Burnley having many fans like you. They didn't even sell their allocation for the lower tier, did they? And it's only 50 miles away.

Although with their team's time-wasting tactics and overtly physical approach, who can blame the fans for staying away? Perhaps they've switched to the NFL so used are they to just 60 minutes of action and lots of pushing and shoving!

And maybe Atkinson could do with a much bigger team of officials to allow him to perform his job properly.

Keep up the reports, at least till the money runs out.

Rob Halligan
5 Posted 14/09/2021 at 17:00:48
Danny, are you going to Villa on Saturday? We will be in the Yewtree pub (I'm sure you will know it) if you want to meet up in there.
Martin Mason
6 Posted 14/09/2021 at 17:13:49
Well done, Danny, you're a good Evertonian. I intend to start going to the games again soon from Horsham between London and the South Coast.
Danny O’Neill
7 Posted 14/09/2021 at 17:22:37
Jon, at this rate, it won't be long!

Upper Bullens in the unused away section. I'm on the waiting list for a season ticket (undeclared but I think there is suspicion), so I just take what I can get right now and some of the kind people on here help out.

Rob - hoping to be there but might be in the home end (family) and yes I know that pub. I have a couple of Villa regular mates who meet there before their matches.

Darren Arnold
8 Posted 14/09/2021 at 17:46:34
Thanks for this great read, Danny, and I'm really pleased that your dedication was rewarded with what (eventually!) turned out to be a great night under the lights at Goodison.

Although I've supported Everton since I was a boy (I'm the same age as you, by the way), I never cease to be amazed by the tremendous efforts of our fans to get along to games, be they home or away fixtures, and it's always interesting to hear/read about the part of the experience that's before and/or after the match.

Last game I got to was pre-Covid, but looking forward to getting along to Loftus Road next week.

Brent Stephens
9 Posted 14/09/2021 at 17:56:26
Danny, love being able to track your day out by the pubs you visited.

"I'm on the waiting list for a season ticket (undeclared but I think there is suspicion)". You mean the dog doesn't know yet?!

Danny O’Neill
10 Posted 14/09/2021 at 18:14:22
Every day out is marked and avoided by pubs, Brent! I always take the chance to go to old haunts and personal places when I go home.

Martin, let me know when you're going and we can can travel up.

Christy Ring
11 Posted 14/09/2021 at 18:24:02
Danny a lovely read, you really are a true blue, and I'd say your good wife has a spot for them also!
Christy Ring
12 Posted 14/09/2021 at 18:31:13
Danny @11 I should have said soft spot.
Tony Abrahams
13 Posted 14/09/2021 at 20:55:47
A lovely nostalgic story, Danny, and still living out your army days when you can survive on four hours kip, mate!

Are you sorted for the Norwich game, Danny?

Paul Traill
14 Posted 14/09/2021 at 22:10:06
Great report Danny. I got home from the match and with a busy day looming felt too tired to write up on the game. Turns out I had no excuse after your escapades. Well in mate. 👍
Danny O’Neill
15 Posted 15/09/2021 at 06:19:26
Thanks Paul. I always look forward to your reports. It brings home the whole experience, not just the football.

Getting there Tony. My cousin's son is thinking he can go, so the option of using his season ticket is looking unlikely. Will have a look today and see what's available, but either way, I'll be at The Bramley Moore!

Tony Abrahams
16 Posted 15/09/2021 at 07:47:33
Let me know, Danny, because with everyone going to your neck of the woods to watch the Joshua fight, I might be able to find you one sitting next to a couple of other ToffeeWebbers with the only downside being it's probably going to be in the Lower Gwladys Street.
Danny O’Neill
17 Posted 15/09/2021 at 11:54:58
Definitely keep me in mind Tony as I'd definitely take you up on the kind offer, regardless of what my relative decides on.

Lower Gwladys, now if Monday was nostalgic, you'll be taking me back to my teenage season ticket holder days!

Jamie Crowley
18 Posted 16/09/2021 at 14:24:04
Danny great post. Sounds a perfect "me day trip".

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