I promised myself that if I had a son, I would go and visit every single stadium in England with him. At just under two, it is time for him to start getting the football fever. I also must admit that I love visiting stadia and understanding the history behind each Club.
Exactly 153 years ago, 12 representatives from a handful of amateur football clubs in and around London met in the Freemasons Arms pub in Covent Garden and decided to thrash out the first ever comprehensive set of rules for their fledgling game. After fierce and presumably alcohol-filled debate and a slew of heretical proposals such as players not being allowed to run with the ball and hacking of shins being actively discouraged, the modern game of football was born. The 12 went on to form the Football Association, the world’s oldest football governing body. But in the centuries that followed, western culture concentrated instead on the allegedly more enlightened architectural pursuits associated with building palaces and cathedrals. It was only after that fateful quorum in Covent Garden 150 years ago that the football stadium as we recognise it, was essentially born and exported, along with the “beautiful game” itself, from England to virtually every corner of the globe.
Therefore, you will find every so often on this blog a review on each Premier League club stadium tour.