Hello there! My name is Jake and everyone who has ever known me knows that I can’t get enough of football!! I have been a football fan for all of my life. My earliest memories of football were watching Liverpool on the TV and watching my local teams Shirebrook Town and Mansfield Town. Football has dominated many of my social interactions with people from all walks of life. Sorry if I bored anyone…

In my experience of watching Mansfield Town, I have often expressed my preference towards away games rather than home games. A day out in a new place with fellow fans!! The more grounds I visited, the more grounds I wanted to see. This gave me an idea!! When I had no other plans at the weekend and Mansfield were at home or I couldn’t get on the supporters coach for an away trip, I would go and watch a new team at their ground as a neutral.

I didn’t call myself a ground hopper until the first few months of the 2019/20 season. I always thought to myself that I could do something with this hobby and memories. One night after a game I got home and a light bulb shone above my head as bright as it’s ever been. Let’s make a blog about it!! And here we are!

I have read other ground hopper blogs and thought I could do that but I will be taking a different approach. I will be rating the grounds and putting them into league tables. There are 4 different aspects of these grounds that I will be rating them on that I believe make the best match day experience. These will be rated out of 10 and they are:

  • Atmosphere – Do I feel like I am at a football match here? Or is this a library? I have a soft spot for fan bases who have flags, banners, drums and who blow up the decibel level.
  • The Ground – Is it a nice ground with good facilities? Or is it a s***hole and I wanna go home? Or is my garden shed really bigger than this?
  • Expense – Am I really getting what I paid for? If I pay £40 to watch a bore draw with a quiet fan base, it will not score particularly high. But if I pay £5 and see a 5-4 win with a 97th minute winner and crazy celebrations, it will score vey high. Not that it has to be that outrageous but I would prefer to see goals!
  • Overall Experience – Has it been a good day out overall? A good day out would be a nice place, meet other fans and enjoy the game, that simple!

If there are any score ties, whichever team had the better overall experience will finish higher. If the overall experience score is the same, the team which had the better atmosphere will finish higher.

Come and join me and let’s answer the question: Where is football’s greatest match day experience?

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