Passionate FC Barcelona Fans: We Love 'em
I was fortunate to spend a short beak in Barcelona last week and wow, those Catalan fans are really up for Wednesday's Champions League Cup Final.
Many of you reading this will wonder, why on earth is a Manchester City FC fans internet site reporting on a game when the club I support didn't even qualify for this seasons tournament. Perhaps I should explain?
All this week we at Vital Manchester City are lending our support to FC Barcelona. Why I hear you ask? Well, why not!
Our rivals, Manchester United are one of the most, if not the most hated clubs in the United Kingdom, therefore it would be churlish not to climb on the band wagon.
In normal circumstances many of us Brits, including myself would be lending our total support for any British team (English, Irish, Scottish or Welsh) playing in any European Cup Final, but not when Manchester United have anything to do with it.
Like I said in the introduction I spent a few days last week visiting Spain. The wife and I flew into Barcelona airport, (for the fist time I might add), we checked through customs, found our way to the shuttle bus and off we went.
Fifteen minutes into our journey and having travelled past the industrial side of Barca it was beginning to become clear that one of the prestigious clubs in Spain had achieved something, but at the time I wasn't quite sure what. It later dawned on me that the Catalan side had won the La Liga title the day before. Open top vans were driving around tooting their horns while displaying a colourful display of red and blue flags and banners.
Buildings were strune with similar attire, not to mention men, women and children walking around with Barca tops and scarves. Yes, scarves and it was 24 degrees in the shade!
Once we'd settled into our hotel it was time to adventure around the resort of Santa Susanna. Actually I lied a tad there as I managed to grab a few San Miguel's prior to being pulled around the nick-knack shops as I call them.
Thankfully I had the cheap sun glasses firmly attached and thank god I did as just about every where one looked there was a sea of Barcelona colours - Henry, Messi, Eto'o and the like printed on shirts and posters all of which made me rather jealous if I'm honest. Not only that, shops were selling Barca footballs, tee-towels, cigarette lighters...the list goes on. Wow, the club certainly have their merchandising to a 'T'.
As the holiday came to a close I was actually contemplating buying an FC Barcelona top, not that I support them in any shape or form, but simply to wind up the odd rag or two. Now I'm back in good old Blighty I wish I dug into my pocket and found a few Euros just for the pleasure.
Wednesday 27 May 2009 is going to be a special occasion, that I am sure. I just hope come the final whistle Sir Alex, his players and the millions of so-called Reds around the world end up with faces looking like a smacked arses. Don't you?