Sunday, 24 March 2013

A night of soccer

Manuel and Katie have become avid soccer fans and thanks to Manuel's persistent efforts we were able to get tickets to a qualifying match between Argentina and Venezuela.  This gave us an exciting night with the local fans and gave us a chance to go into a huge stadium (seating more than 70,000) and to experience the exuberance of the fans.

Our tickets were not easy to get.  Manuel and I tried for several hours on various  electronic devices on the day that the tickets went on sale and Manuel was finally successful in getting us prime seats.

We all got various paraphernalia to show our support for the home team

We took the bus across the city to get to the stadium

After going through 5 check points, including 3 where we were frisked and being supervised by riot police, we made it into the huge stadium.

Katie and Manuel were in their finery to watch the game

The noise of so many fans was incredible

Before we knew it, the game was starting with all the necessary formalities

In the stand there was a section for Venezuelan fans only, separated by a barbed wire fence and a row of police from the other fans

Although he was Venezuelan, there were banners grieving the death of Chavez

Messi, arguably the best player in the world,  had a free kick opportunity and he was able to score

The Argentinean team in celebration after the gooooooooooooooooooooal!

Katie was able to get me a giant hand at the entrance which I used to celebrate the goals

Fans are kept in their section by heavy duty fences

We stayed behind for a while to allow the crowds to was incredible to see the huge numbers of people

The Venezuelan fans were required to remain in the stadium for an hour after all of the other fans had left the stadium.  They continued to chant and cheer, especially when some of their team members came out for a cameo appearance.

Even empty the stadium was impressively big

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