By Joe Mellor, Deputy Editor
It comes to something when the most fun you had at an away game is being stuck on the Hammersmith & City line for an hour, and missing the first twenty minutes of the match.
As ever the lads met in the Railway Tavern in Liverpool Street, doesn’t seem to matter if we are playing Chelsea that’s where we meet. Pretty much six quid for a pint of Kronenbourg…canny.
Some of the lads had “worked” from home and had been in the pub since midday, where I should have been, but for a change, I actually had to do some work from home.
Everyone sunk as many pints as possible, and as ever we had to wait for one guy – a school teacher- who is always late, who you would think would have learnt to be punctual.
For the tube journey a quick road-beer trip to Marks & Spencer was called for, which sorted out the men from the dandies. The more refined opted for one of the extensive “cocktails in a can” collection, one lad (not known for his vast knowledge of wine) got a bottle of Rose. The “proper” lads bought lager. I got cocktails.
If you put twenty men together ages ranging from late twenties to well – a couple of the lads are knocking on a bit, things are going to get a bit boisterous.
Apologies to the fellow passengers; Geordies regardless of professional class, will revert to a Viz character at the match. A chant of “Danny Dyer is a wanker” seemed to be the musical accompaniment of choice.
Anyway, in their wisdom, Transport for London held the tube in a tunnel somewhere near Bow Road for over an hour, meaning we got to the ground at 8.20pm and we were already one-nil down.
Two of the group gave up on the way to the match, and just went to some grotty boozer in West ham, even for Geordies, the bars around there are grim. One of these two band of brothers then went on to lose his keys and wallet and had to beg a mate to let him kip on his couch.
The only illumination from Newcastle was a guy wearing a pretty “special” jacket, I don’t think he is part of Newcastle’s notorious hooligan firm, if he is sorry, please don’t chin me.
Half time approached and we headed (with everyone else by the look of it to the bar) and decided to drink five bottles each in 15 minutes. I have been to some swanky bars in my time (show off) and seen some decent sized bar bills (someone else paid,obvs) but my mate’s £70 half time Carlsberg beer bill, was up with there with a boozy lunch at Nobu, but with literally none of the class.
To be fair we snuck some beers into the stand (bottles down pants, stay classy) which was also our second misdemeanor of the night. Only jaywalking left for the holy trinity of crap non-violent resistance, against the regime.
One lad used his right arm to hide his bottle of drink from the stewards and managed to make it look like a fascist salute every time he had swig, so if you saw that on Sky, don’t send the video to the Lad Bible.
After the game two of our number saw ex-toon player Nikos Dabizas waiting for a bus, and said “the Greek crash must have hit poor Nikos hard.”
And what about the match you ask? You don’t support Newcastle United for the football, we’re not sado-masochists.