Thursday 9th August 2012. City of Coventry Stadium.
The day that Canada’s Women’s football team were trying to make history by winning their first medal at the Olympics.
Even though Coventry is a 330 mile (530km) round trip I knew I had to be there to support Canada, even if I’d had no sleep to speak off and arrived without a guaranteed ticket to watch the game!
A feature of this Olympic Games has been the helpfulness and friendly atmosphere created by the volunteers and those working behind the scenes. None more so shown today as despite having to supposedly walk to the venue from the car park, we were taken in a shuttle bus and I was given accurate instructions as to how to go about obtaining a ticket.
Ticket in hand I entered the Stadium, never having been here before I was surprised at the intimacy. Despite having a cheaper ticket I still had a fantastic view.
Canadian fans far outnumbered their French counterparts and gave the girl’s a fantastic welcome just for the pre-game warm-up.
If I’m honest it wasn’t a pretty game of football and far from the best I’ever seen. In the first half both teams best chances came from dispossessing their opponents high up the pitch. Canada looked tired and lethargic in the second half. Maybe it was the baking hot day or the emotional semi-final game and everything that entailed taking it’s toll. Either way how France didn’t score is still a mystery to me! Hitting the woodwork 3 times, rebounds falling safe and Erin McLeod making a handful of great saves kept Canada in the game until the 2nd minute of injury time at the end of the regulation 90. A free kick launched into the French penalty box, ended up in a game of pinball with the ball falling kindly to Diana Matheson who had the simple task of sliding the ball home from no more than 8 yards.
Cue the stadium and yours truly going nuts! Perhaps an undeserved victory on the day but after the infamous semi-final perhaps some justice was served. Tough luck on the French though.
Cue the celebrations below……
Here’s to 2015 and some more history!