Date: 14th June 2007
Match: England U21 - Italy U21 2-2 (UEFA U21 Championships)
Attendance: 17 103
After two days in Groningen it was time to move on. Next stop was Arnhem and after checking in at my hotel, just opposite the train station, I met up with my friend Neil. He was going by car and I directed him to the underground garage near the train station. We then tried to find some other England fans as Neil had offered them some spare tickets. After wandering around in circles for 20 minutes we eventually made it to the right square, which turned out to be just next to where we started. Anyway, we were now a bit hungry and as we sat down at a restaurant a journalist from Israel found us a bit interesting and interviewed/talked to us for an hour. It is moments like this that makes groundhopping and travelling so special.
The match between England and Italy was played in the Gelredome, a stadium built for the EURO 2000 tournament. Neil and I had bought our tickets independantly of each other but when we discovered we were in the same block, same row and only three seats apart we just laughed. What are the chances of this happening ? Gelredome has a retractable roof and when the thunderstorms closed in on Arnhem the roof was closed and it suddenly felt very warm and humid inside. The actual match was very good, as good as it will be at this level, and it finished 2-2. We travelled back to the city centre via a shuttle bus and said goodbye to each other outside my hotel knowing we would meet up in Heerenveen again two days later.
England fans in the city centre