Last Sunday I was one of the 39,994 people who paid a visit to Stamford Bridge to watch Chelsea play Middlesbrough, in a Premier League game. It was the first time I have ever visited a Premier League match, and the first time in years I have been to a game. It was amazing.
I am not a Chelsea fan, but I felt like one. When Carvalho nods in the first goal, and everyone around me went wild, I felt a magnificent tingly sensation that I have never felt before. It was so liberating, to be able to look wherever I wanted to, to see what I could see, without replays, living the game in the moment. It was so humanising, to be able to see these players in real life, to watch how they play.
The seats we had were truly incredible. I don’t not really have a yard-stick to judge them by, but I understand that being in the front row of the third tier, almost level with the centre circle, is amazing.
I have never felt like this before. Never before have I been able to watch what the keepers do when no-one else is around, what the captain really does, to freely see how players run off the ball. The most interesting moment was watching an injury in the first half. I never knew that physio's ran so fast! They really sprint!
It was an exhilarating experience, and I now have a new goal in life: to go and see England play a proper competitive international at Wembley, and to go see Manchester United play at Old Trafford.