Saturday’s game against Everton ended badly. Being honest, it was just awful all the way through from a claret and blue perspective. It was not just a huge 4-0 loss but a true embarrassment. Nevertheless, at the first away game I have been to this season, I was blown away by the incredible support. The football itself wouldn’t make travelling to an away match again any time soon appealing but being among a couple of thousand dedicated fans, who were intent on bringing optimism and humour to Goodison Park, offered me a more a compelling reason to support my team on the road.
It was the usual drill for the first part of the game: some singing, some chanting and a bit of banter with the home fans. The atmosphere was taken up a notch in the second half. From about fifteen minutes into the second half and for at least ten minutes after, the song “Everywhere we go, everywhere we go, we’re the Villa boys making all the noise, everywhere we go” was sung non-stop. Everton fans were staring over in bemusement but also in respect of the support we were showing.
It should also be noted that Goodison Park really is a library, as I didn’t hear the Toffees sing a great deal and they only made themselves heard four times, obviously for the goals.
Football is the most widely supported sport in the country yet in Saturday’s fixture we proved that it doesn’t have to be taken quite so seriously. Rather amusingly, one clever Villan adapted the famous Christmas song by Band Aid to “Feed the Scousers” and got everyone singing it. It wasn’t just the away fans who that found it funny, as there were even Everton fans laughing with us (admittedly whilst holding up two fingers) while it was sung.
Away fans always seem to be the best fans. They are the dedicated few. Aston Villa Football Club’s away supporters did themselves proud on Saturday, unlike the first team. Acknowledging recent atrocities, the French national anthem was respected by most and those who were still making noise were told, in no uncertain terms, to be quiet. Along with that, chants of “England” were in full flow in a great demonstration of patriotism.
At recent home matches prior to the Manchester City game, the atmosphere had noticeably died down, which is disappointing if unsurprising, so it is certainly nice to know that there are still proper fans about who are prepared to back the team and enjoy themselves come what may.