There are some football sites that like to analyse results and performances, offering ideas about what it means for the club, where it puts us, and peruse over possible permutations ahead of the next game.
So in a similar vein, here is a shortlist of observations from play off final day. But as always, we want to put a Sydney Hammers’ spin our articles. This is the top five things we may have learnt as a result of bringing around 300 West Ham United fans together, in a pub on the other side of the World, to witness a historic match in the clubs history.
1) The best fans:
The first, probably most obvious observation, was that we have the best fans. We probably already realised this. But just quite how good and strong the support was made a reality by the turnout in the Royal Exhibition. The atmosphere, attitude and banter inside and outside the pub was sensational.
Despite the ticket fiasco back home, it was clear to see just how great our support is. And as at Wembley, we almost had too many for the venue to cope with.
2) Amazing venue:
It was further emphasised just how good a home venue the The Royal Exhibition really is for the Sydney Hammers. It’s simply a fantastic place to watch football. The staff are really hospitable, the bouncers are always sensible, and the management are great hosts. They allowed us to put up flags, balloons, scarves, and really ensure the bar had a bubble blowing Boleyn Ground feel.
Thanks to everyone at the Royal Exhibition who helped in getting the event put on, and we really hope we treat the place right. We look forward to many more celebrations there in future.
3) We’re gaining momentum:
Everything around the club seems to have momentum right now, not least the Sydney Hammers Supporters group. Just as West Ham are preparing for their return to the big time, we’re taking our group to a new level. We picked up well over 100 fans in the build up to the final, and numbers continue to grow. It not only means watching live matches will come with even more of a buzz, but our presence at events such as five-a-side tournaments and pub quizzes can be even stronger.
4) Chelsea fans are muppets:
Now, I’m not usually one to bag out opposition fans, but something that was stand out on play off final day was the attitude of Chelski fans. Their supporters club had arranged to meet at the Royal Exhibition to watch their Champions League final. But sadly, they came with terrible banter, were obnoxious, and the fact they only got 30 for the Champions League again emphasises how strong our supporters network is.
We were prepared to stick around and back Chelsea through the final, what with the possible repercussions for Spurs, but they just made for an unpleasant atmosphere. We’d always hope we can have more fun and be more gracious when following West Ham Down Under.
5) Always true Claret and Blue:
But finally, what was most clear from the final, was that it will always be worth following West Ham. The day was amazing, the result was incredible, and the celebrations raucous.
In the first game of the NPower Championship season, we lost in the last minute toCardiff. “Typical West Ham” we all declared. But none of us truly walked away from it, despite the idle threats.
We stuck with the team. We went through the highs and lows of the season. There were tragically early starts, questionable tactics and shocking results. But having got through all that, it culminated in a fantastic day and a perfect result that I for one wouldn’t swap for anything.
We all know when we sign up to support West Ham, we’re never in for an easy ride, but it just makes those successes even sweeter.