Friday, 5 April 2013


Updated '9:00pm bells' Friday 5th April 2013

Ground number 300!
Date of First Visit 4th April 2013
Estadio Da Luz, Lisbon, Portugal

Benfica 3
Newcastle United 1 (Cisse)

Europa League Quarter final 1st leg
Attendance: 44,133 (aroond aboot 4,000 Toon fans!)


'The holy grail' of 300 groonds watchin' 'The Toon' waz finally  reached by 'The mad-sad groundhopper' @ The Estadio Da Luz<(Stadium of Light) last neet, but waz tinged with disappointment of course because of wor attempt to throw the tie away by pressin' the 'self destruct button'!

Below iz a brief trip report and aa will add loads more az the days gan by!

The 'nine bells' chartaa flight on Wednesday mornin' from Toon Airport waz uneventful and we touched doon in the Portugese capital some three hours later!
Aftaa a quick 'wash n brush up' in wor city centre hotel we were 'off on the hoy' once agen in yet anothaa European city in wor (seeeminglee!) nevaa endin' adventure!

'The Hard Rock Cafe' waz wor forst 'port o caall', a good 20 minutes waalk from the hotel and from there we heeded up a 'very' steep hill to some 'very' cheap boozers at the top!
'The Wasp' bar certainly didn't 'sting us' @ ONE Euro a pint<(less than a quid!) and from there we moved onto the various drinkin dens dotted aroond that area, many of them filled with Toon fans with the same idea az us!<(f*****' plonkies!)

At aroond aboot 'midneet bells' we decided to gan for an orly mornin' 'retirement' back to the hotel to catch up on some much needed sleep! "ZZZZZzzzzz!!!!!"

Next day of course waz 'match day' and we heeded back to 'The Hard Rock' where quite a few of the 4,000 Toon fans who had travelled ower were congrigated.
The main area knaan az 'Rossi Square', (we were telt) waz packed with Toon fans by orly afternoon and so we heeded back to wor old 'haunts' 'on the hill' for a quiet afternoons 'gargelin', az it waz off 'the beaten track'!

Before lang we were off to the match where a thorough search waz completed before they would let us in, ne doubt to see if anybody had been hidin' flares or smokebombs doon their pants!

Just before the match kicked of a giant eagle waz released in the centre of the pitch (Benfica are knaan az 'The Eagles') and flew aroond the pitch menacingly for five minutes, much to the amusement of the Toon fans!
Az it landed back on it's keeper's glove there waz huge applause from both the Benfica fans and the Toon fans for this novel pre match innovation! Certainly A'V nevaa seen out like this before!<(perhaps WE shud copy them and release two magies before eech home game @ St James'?)<(one for sorrow TWO for JOY!)

Anyway!--mee 'historic' 300th groond to watch the Toon waz complete when *Cisse kicked the game off and aa carnt imagine EVAA bein' able to de 400, az a'd run oot of groonds! (*Aa aalways say that aa haveent been to a groond until a Toon player touches the baall!)

We took the lead in the 12th minute when a pinpoint through baall from 'The Sissoko Kid' foond Cisse and he made 'ne mistake' from close in to send the travellin' faithful into rapures high in the stands behind the far end goal!
Cisse then agonizinglee hit the post, but his effort reboonded oot and the chance to double wor lead waz gone!
It aall went 'pear shaped' aftaa this though az in the 25th minute Tim Krul in the Toon goal could anly push a save to the feet of Moreno and he had the easy task of firin' the baall into the net to level things!

Then just aftaa the restart we had a glorious chance to once agen retake the lead when 'Marveaux the Magician' foond Cisse and hiz chip ower their goalie looked to be gannin in' anly for the spinnin' baall to agonizingleee hit the post once agen and boonce oot!
Then disaster struck when an attempted back pass from Santon to Krul waz intercepted by Lima who shot into the empty goal!

It waz soon 3-1 to Benfica when Steve Taylor needlesly handled in the box to give the home side a penalty which Cardozo convorted at the 2nd attempt! (the ref made him retake the 1st one which he aalso scored from!)

There waz ne way back from this and despite a couple of chances to reduce the defesitt<(Geordie Times spellin'!) we must now gan into the revorse fixture @ St James' next week and hope for more luck!
A game we shud have won 3-1 torned oot to be the exact opposite!---and to say we pressed the 'self destruct button' would be the understatement of the year!

Toon team: Krul, Simpson (Gosling 83), Santon, Steve Taylor, Yanga, Cabaye, Perch (Anita 62) Sissoko, Gutierrez, Marveaux (Sola Ameobi 80), Cisse

We were locked in for ower half an hour aftaa the game, much to the annoyance of 'us' and a couple of skirmishes broke oot between some frustrated Toon fans and the local 'dibble' dressed in riot gear who drew and used their batons!<(completlee ower the top in wor opinion!)

We were then bussed straight to Lisbon Airport for wor flights back, eventually arrivin' at mee front door at 'presisely' 'fower twenty five bells' this mornin'!

A 'BIG ONE' off the list this time!

'Geordie Times' groondhoppin' milestones!

1964***1st groond***St James' Park of course! (1st team v Coventry City***(Old) Division Two)

1969***10th and 1st European away groond***Ibrox Park, Glasgow (1st team v Rangers***Inter Cities Fairs Cup)

1978***50th groond, Craven Cottage, London (1st team v Fulham***(Old) Division Two)

1991***100th groond, Prenton Park, Birkenhead (1st team v Tranmere Rovers***(Old) Division Two )

1997***150th groond, Louis II Stadium, Monte Carlo, (1st team v Monaco***UEFA Cup)

2001***200th groond, Somerset Park, Ayr (1st team v Ayr United***Friendly)

2005***250th groond, Kingsley Park, Ryton (Resorves/Juniors v Ryton***Friendly)

2013***300th groond, Estadio Da Luz, Lisbon (1st team v Benfica***Europa League)

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