AFC Totton 1 Truro City 3
For the last few seasons, I’ve started my FA Vase journey dreaming of a trip to the new Wembley stadium. I don’t need to document the whole Wembley saga other than to say that, when I started my Vase journey this season at Frimley Green, I was expecting the final to once again be held at a mid-table premiership club. The intensity of this competition increased hugely once Wembley was confirmed as the final venue & Billingham Synthonia fans and players were inconsolable when they fell at the cruelist of hurdles.
But off I went leaving myself loads of time to soak up the atmosphere. I was surrounded by Chelsea fans whilst travelling to London all bemoaning what a lousy season they’d had, I wonder if AFC Totton fans will now talk the same way?
A special mention to the gentleman on the tube playing loud rap music to which he sung along, sucked through his teeth & flicked his fingers. I know we all have different tastes in music but did he have to have it playing at full blast? I suppose I did learn some new swear words.
Wembley Park station has been revamped. You now descend a large concrete staircase to Wembley way. There were several station staff with megaphones telling people not to take photographs. It hadn’t entered my head until they started screaming this out, I must confess that this brought to my attention what a good photo it would make, so I sneaked a quick photo in whilst nobody was looking. It’s only when you get about 100 yards away that you actually notice any effect that the megaphones were having.
I wondered whether I’d still get the buzz when walking down Wembley Way. Fear not, it actually sent a shiver up my spine. I’ll always be a twin turret rather than an arch man, but the place looked magnificent.
A focal point just outside the stadium is the statue of Bobby Moore, an extremely good likeness despite a friend telling me to look out for the statue of Booby Charlton! A good meeting point & photo opportunity.
My only complaint for this trip was that the loos on the exterior of the stadium were flooded, meaning you had to wade ankle high through water if you needed to use these, not a great first impression.
The fountains below the stadium concourse are a nice touch, there are loads of catering outlets all grossly overpriced but subsequently, the queues were short.
About 90 minutes before kick-off, we were treated to an almighty thunderstorm, the thunder seemingly rocking the foundations, the heavy rain did nothing to improve the smell coming off the ridiculous number of police horses in attendance.
On entering the stadium, you go up an escalator. If like me, you’re in the top tier, you go up 3 escalators, a unique almost eerie sensation inside a football stadium. You then reach the main interior of the ground where there are ample facilities and a good amount of space. I headed straight for the inside of the ground. I have to say, it took my breath away. IT IS HUGE! Loads of leg room, terrific views and a great atmosphere. I cannot put into words what it is truly like, but I cannot recommend it highly enough, well worth the wait. A slightly strange atmosphere as you cannot hear the players shouting being so far away, instead you just have the constant sound of those horns which are readily available down Wembley way.
The game after a cautious start, lived up to all expectations. An open attacking game with loads of chances and excitement. Truro to be honest, were clearly the better side and nobody could begrudge their victory.
Totton scored first when Potter spun and hit a nice finish into the top corner after the Truro keeper spilt a cross. Truro equalised on halftime as Wills brilliantly brought down a high ball, beat 2 men and drilled a low shot home. Wills scored again on 56 mins hitting a low shot under the keepers outstretched arm. There were a couple of almighty goalmouth scrambles which Truro were lucky to clear but they wrapped it up on 84 minutes when Broad exchanged passes with a team-mate and finished well.A far cry from the sunny start I made to this competition this season in front of about 30 people at Frimley Green. I guess that’s half the joy of it.