Europa League Group K, Molineux, 12/12/19
Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club
Founded – 1877 (As St Lukes Football Club)
Nickname – Wolves
Honours – First Division 1953/54, 1957/58 and 1958/59. FA Cup- 1892/93, 1907/08, 1948/49 and 1959/60. League Cup- 1973/74 and 1979/80
Current Division – Premiership
Random Fact – In May Peter Davies (71) claimed he designed the Wolf logo that is now the clubs crest. He claimed it was an art project and tried to sue Wolves for copyright and failed. Mr Davies now £4500000 out of pocket due to legal fees. Sore one
The second long haul job for the week after my Friday night antics down in North Wales. One of the worst drives I have ever taken on. I like driving but this was white knuckle stuff. From Carlisle to around Stoke I could hardly see for the rain and it was more like jet skiing than driving. Horrible experience
My hotel was spitting distance from Molineux which was an unexpected bonus. So the pre match pints were in the bar there. It was here I got speaking to a couple. Really friendly and really interested in my “groundhopping” and Scottish fitba. A pleasant start to the nights proceedings and a nice welcome to Wolverhampton
When I was a kid I used to have a thing about Wolves. They were second tier but seemed to get televised cup ties against Premier opposition. Steve Bull and Don Goodman were strutting their stuff in those days. I always watched them when they were on and I wanted to go to Molineux from then. Many moons later I was in the Midlands
As I was on the hunt for my scarf I noticed the Besiktas team bus parked outside the Stan Cullis stand. Is it just me or is that a horrific carbon footprint That’s a four thousand mile round trip. Could they not just have hired one. Then again maybe the club punished the players for being rubbish in Europe by actually bussing them to Wolverhampton from Istanbul. Once my scarf and badge for my bro were acquired I made my way to the Steve Bull stand. En route I passed the Besiktas fans entering. They were in decent enough numbers considering they were the bottom team of the group and long time out of Europe.
I was pre warned in the pub that as this was a damp squib of a game a already qualified Wolves would put out a weakened side. Turned out Besiktas were also doing similar. It showed as the first half was pretty flat and pretty much poor. 0-0 at half time and I was panicking I was to have a fourteen hour round trip for no goals. Turned out Nuno Espirito Santo had an idea up his sleeve and brought on Diogo Jota. What a masterstroke this was. Introduced on fifty six minutes and on sixty nine minutes he had a hattrick. The first was a great goal with two sublime pieces of showboating in the build up leaving Jota with a an easy header after two minutes on the park. The second was a tap in after the Turkish keeper made a fantastic save off the bar , unfortunate for the Besiktas number 1………I mean 97. Wolves best player on the night Dendoncker headed ion the third off a corner then that man Jota got another tap in to make it four in an eleven minute blitz. Some change in performance inspired by the Spaniard Jota. But in all honestly Besiktas were not at the races during any stage of the match
Then the bad bit and completely bizarre, needless and moronic. Gary Neville talked about it on Sky. Racism is on the rise in the UK since Brexit reared its ugly head. What started off as casual racism about kebabs(no racism is acceptable and is absolutely abhorrent) but it got more sinister with many around me shouting remarks such as “sand dancers”, “rag heads” and other similar anti arab remarks. This got worse and worse. Then a few in the front row donned matching head scarves which infuriated the travelling fans. I don’t know the story behind it but it got the intended result as the Besiktas fans went wild about it. The only time there was any issue with them. Then came the comment that made me leave on 80 mins as I had had enough ” after Brexit you will need visas to get into our country you fucking half Niggers”. (their exact words). I turned to the guy called him scummy arsehole and left with a conversation with a steward on the way out . Racism is becoming a hell of a lot more prevalent these days . Especially at fitba. Scumbags one and all
The police penned in the Turks yet the only trouble that I could see/hear was in the home end. It was a bit over the top as they were very well behaved and one guy spent half the game trying to chat up a blonde ambulance worker. Don’t think he got anywhere mind you.
A good night overall which was soured right at the end by some knuckle dragging morons. But I wont let that tarnish my sixtieth non Scottish game.
Famous club, famous ground and finaly ticked off after many many years