Plan a trip to a Manchester United game [FAN-GUIDE]
Many of those who follow the struggles of the best European football teams dream about watching a match live. It appears that organising a trip to the stadium of your favourite team is not that complicated. In this article, you will find some tips on how to do it.
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Manchester United is one of the most popular football teams in the world. On Saturday (12.09.) they will play a season highlight game against Liverpool FC at home. So far, both teams have gathered seven points each, so the game will be very exciting. Here, we present a small fan-guide with selected prices (current currency rates provided by Cinkciarz.pl – author's footnote), for anyone wanting to see this or other matches with players such as Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata.
To start to organise your trip to a match at the Old Trafford stadium, you should get the One United card. It is the equivalent of a fan-club card. It costs 32 pounds (186 PLN). Shipping of the card to Poland costs 5 pounds (29 PLN), and usually takes about two weeks to be delivered.
Along with the One United card, you will receive the club souvenirs and gadgets (e.g. a lanyard, a pen, a keyring, and a Yearbook – a report of every game in the previous season). Owning the One United card is not obligatory, but it increases your chances of buying a ticket. There are many fans eager to visit Old Trafford, also known as the Theatre of Dreams (the author of this name is sir Bobby Charlton), and most of the time tickets are drawn only among those who have the One United card. Tickets are available for free sale only for matches against less attractive opponents, who are on lower positions in the league.
You can buy a ticket at a shop near the stadium, order it by phone, or by registering on the Red Devils official website (www.manutd.com). Regular tickets cost between 31 and 53 pounds (180 and 308 PLN). You can also use the services of a company that organises match trips. However, a return flight, stay in a hotel near the stadium, food, and a ticket for the match, will cost you roughly 400 pounds (approximately 2,300 PLN).
The highest expenses concerning a trip to Old Trafford, are transport and accommodation. The most popular solution is to take a morning flight on the day of the match, staying at a cheap hotel near the stadium, and fly back the following evening. This plan allows you to find some extra time for sightseeing.
A return flight from Warsaw costs approximately 800 PLN. One change is included, and the whole journey takes five hours. The flight from Wrocław costs slightly more – approximately 950 PLN. However, it takes almost seven hours. If you plan the trip three or four months ahead, there is a chance to book cheaper tickets by up to 200 PLN.
If you are looking for a single room in a three-star hotel, you have to be prepared for a cost of around 65 pounds (approximately 377 PLN). The cheapest solution is a hostel. One bed in a six-person room costs roughly 20 pounds (approximately 116 PLN).
On the day of the match, the city is full of specially marked buses that will drive you to the Theatre of Dreams from practically every corner of the city.
When you get to the match, you simply must visit the club souvenirs shop. The Manchester United shop is within the stadium grounds, but you can also order gadgets and mementos online. The official match jersey costs 85 pounds (approximately 494 PLN). If you want a jersey to have your favourite player's name on the back, the price may increase to 105 pounds (approximately 610 PLN). The club scarf costs 20 pounds (approximately 116 PLN), and a Red Devils mug costs 7 pounds (approximately 41 PLN).
How to pay for all of this?
If you go to Manchester, you will need pounds. It is worth exchanging the currency in Poland. The popular online currency exchange service Cinkciarz.pl, offers more attractive rates than stationary currency exchange offices. It also has comfortable pre-paid currency cards available in, for example, British pounds. They allow you to perform cashless transactions abroad at any place where VISA is accepted.
Theatre of Dreams short story
Manchester United was founded in 1878. Initially they played in the Newton Heath LYR Football Club jerseys. In 1902, the club was near bankruptcy, and it changed its name to the current one. Six years later, it became the champions of England for the first time. In 1910, the team moved to the Old Trafford stadium, where it plays its games to this day.
The history of this team contains a dramatic event, which occurred in 1958. A plane with the players on board crashed during take off at the airport in Munich. Twenty three people died, including eight football players. Despite this, Manchester United rose after this tragedy, and in 1968 the popular Red Devils won the European Cup as the first English team in history. In the final match against Benfica Lisbon, one goal was scored by Bobby Charlton, one of the survivors of the Munich catastrophe.
In 1986, Sir Alex Ferguson became the team's coach. He worked on this position constantly for 27 years. During this period, the team won England's championship 13 times. Today, Manchester United is a twenty-time champion of England, which makes it the most titled club on the British Isles. Currently, the team's coach is Luis van Gaal, and in its line-up such players as Bastian Schweinsteiger, Juan Mata, and Wayne Rooney can be found.
The Old Trafford stadium was founded in 1910. The opening match against Liverpool was watched by 50 thousand viewers. The stadium is one of the most attractive not only in England, but also Europe. However, it suffered quite a lot of damage during World War II. In March 1941, the Old Trafford was destroyed by German bombers. The renovation of the stadium took eight years, but in the following years it underwent further modernisations. As a sign of appreciation of these efforts the UEFA authorities gave the club the right to organise the Champion's League final match in 2003. After the recent enlargement of the grandstands in 2006, the Red Devil's games can be watched live by 76 thousand fans.
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