Toast’s summer reporter, Al Fresco, has been looking at the effect the FA Cup had worldwide by talking to the travelling fans and people of Portsmouth and asking for their stories.
First up is Fred who found himself in the Big Apple the week before the Final. The game as regular VP readers will know was only shown in the US of A on pay per view television but dotted all around the City are posters on lampposts Portsmouth v Cardiff with the clubs badges and where you can watch it. Photos have been seen as proof and when available will be posted in the albums.
PJ a Welshman but definitely not a Cardiff fan found himself in Tokyo on Final Day. On checking into his hotel he asked the reception staff where he could watch the game. The staff had difficulty in understanding our weary traveller but offered to find out for him. This was early morning and PJ hoped they had time to locate a suitably tuned television set before the 10pm kick off.
In his room he scoured the channels available on the hotel system but to no avail and early afternoon he passed reception and the staff beckoned him over. He was handed an itinerary to a Sports Bar in downtown Tokyo. The directions were of course in Japanese but a member of staff had diligently translated it all into English. All the necessary trains, platforms, walking distances etc were included. What fantastic service and how did they find out.
PJ sets off that evening following the instructions and eventually finds the bar. He walks inside and there leaning against the bar is a fan in a Pompey shirt!! Nigel is his name and he tells PJ that he was educated in Pompey but now works out of the City (London) and is based in Tokyo for some time.
The picture in the bar is not good and Nigel suggests the bar next door where they watch that famous victory and then it is taxi back to base for PJ. Next stop for PJ on his whistle stop tour is China.
There in China he manages to catch glimpses of the victory parade on Chinese television with commentary such as ??? Harry Redknapp ???? etc. He tries to explain to the locals that you can see my house just over there.
Meanwhile Sue is in deepest Thailand on holiday and on leaving the country is given the famous gift of orchids, which are wrapped in newspaper. When she arrives home in Southsea she carefully unwraps the orchids and notices the date of the paper is 17th. Across the back page is emblazoned a photograph of Harry and Joe Jordan on the training ground. Obviously an article on the upcoming game but who can read Thai?
Al Fresco has found no-one who ran into Chix so perhaps his brag he’s here, he’s there, he’s everywhere may just be a slight over-exaggeration!! Just a few stories that show just what the FA Cup Final still means around the world – have you heard of any?
Written by eastneydave.
The views within this article are the views of the individual who wrote and submitted this piece, sometimes solely theirs. They are not necessarily shared by the Vital Pompey Site Journalists.
As well as this other offering from eastneydave, others have shared their cup final memories:
pompeygray – The Long and Fruitful Journey
pompeyrug – ‘It meant the world to me’
eastneydave – Did it really happen