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PMT.

May 4, 2013

Today started badly.

The alarm sounded at 9am, the weather was clear. Went to leave the house at 9.40, a spot of drizzle. Got onto Wetmore Road which seems to have it’s own micro-climate, and the heaven’s opened… and stayed fully open for the duration of my 20 minute walk into the town centre.

I was soaked to the skin, said a lot of swear words, and wasn’t really in the best of moods.

I finally get to the hairdressers, check my Twitter, and see yet more comments from Bradford fans about their sizeable support, and our modest support.

It was like a red rag to a bull.

I sent a few tweets of my own out… then it was time for my trim.

And it got me thinking, “why am I biting like this?”… I’m normally not bothered at what clueless fans of bigger clubs have to say about little Burton, but these last few days I’ve been biting back on facebook and twitter, totally pissed off by the arrogance and attitude of some supporters.

Basically, I’ve got PMT.

Yep, Pre-Match Tension has taken hold of me and I’m tetchy.

The relaxed, excited feeling I had before Thursday has been replaced with a sense of hope, belief, and even more excitement that we can actually do this; mixed with anxiety, a fear of how destraught we will be should the worst happen.

Anyway, back to my gripe with the constant willy-waving about support.

The reality is Bradford City are a massive club at this level, and have the stadium and attendances for the Championship/Premier League. I think Valley Parade is a cracking ground, 1 of my favourites along with Turf Moor for watching football in, and you can’t help but be impressed when the whole ground start singing as the place just rocks.

They seem to have decent supporters, and I was rooting for them as the underdogs in their incredible League cup run. (apart from against us, obviously)

But as always, games like this crop up and you get the minority of supporters from the big club giving it this and that about support to the smaller club.

Now does anyone remember Albion vs Bradford in April 2010? I struggle too as well. A meaningless end of season game ending 1-1. What suprised me was how few Bradford fans had bothered with the trip, there can’t have been anymore than 400 Bantams in the away end. Yes they weren’t having a great season but they were getting crowds of 11,000 at home, and the Pirelli was a new ground for them that wasn’t too far away.

Bradford have never sold out there allocation at the Pirelli in 4 attempts, until tomorrow obviously. Quite a few smaller teams have managed.

Like I’ve already said, Bradford’s support in the League Cup was highly impressive. Even 5-0 down at Wembley all you could hear were the Bantams.

But all you could hear when Albion were 5-0 down at Old Trafford were (11,000?)travelling Brewers.

We all have the bandwaggoners.

Our away following to Bradford was 656. Now I don’t know about you, but I was suprised when I read this? We were allocated 2,000 seats… You can’t tell me the away section was just over 25% full? I thought we took a good 900+, but there you go.

So 656 travelling supporters. Say we get what, about 2,000-2,500 in the home ends on a normal Saturday at home? So we took about 25% of our average support away with us, if my Maths serves me right.

Quite decent when you look at it like that.

Now cast your mind’s back to April 2000; we were battling for the Runners-up spot in the Doc Martens Prem, whilst Bradford were embroiled in a Premier League relegation battle.

We were just the 5 league’s below Bradford!

On 15.04.2000, we got a home crowd of 722 against Crawley Town. So what we took to Bradford on Thursday was nearly 100% of a home crowd we got just 13 years ago!

The Bradford programme lists the away followings, something I wish all programme’s did because I’m a geek for things like that.

They took 284 to Watford in the League Cup on a Tuesday. 393 to Oxford. 281 to Northampton for an FA Cup tie. 251 to Exeter for a game against fellow play-off contenders (admittedly a long distance!) and 313 to an important league fixture at Vale.

These are hardly massive away followings… Especially when you club get’s 10,000+ supporters at home.

We took 450 to Sheff Utd and 700+ to Leicester in the League Cup. 250+ to Alty, 500 to Crewe, and 2,000 to Leicester in the FA Cup. We took 250 to Coventry in the JPT. 400 to Fleetwood, doubling what Bradford took there 2 weeks previous.

So to summarise. Off course Bradford are a much, much bigger club than us. But when you look at the facts, actual figures on away followings, I’m not sure how they can question our support at all?

Anyway, moan over. Apologies, the PMT’s to blame.

Safe journey to all you Bantams tomorrow!

Here’s to a great game.

UTB.

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From → The Albion.

3 Comments
  1. MinesAPint permalink

    A perfectly fair and balanced piece. Every club has its idiots, and we are no exception either.

    Don’t forget in all of these statistics that they also sold out their entire allocations at 1/4 of their away league fixtures this year, including; Rotherham (2400), York (2,200), Chesterfield (2,400), Accrington (1,500), Cheltenham (1,500), Burton (1700 – playoff). That’s still pretty impressive, however many they get at home.

    • Thanks Phil. Yes some Bantams have msgd me about Fleetwood, I was suprised when I saw 200 but put it down to the Cup run!

      And yeah some of Bradford away followings have been very impressive like you say. I was just trying to make the point to the people who have been knocking us that some BCAFC followings haven’t exactly been “all that.”

  2. MinesAPint permalink

    Nearly 1/3 of away games if Fleetwood away was a typo and another sellout.

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