Wednesday 23rd June
Unfortunately all good things come to an end, our early morning flight back to Gatwick via Madrid was booked and we had to say goodbye to a brilliant tournament and hope England would do “the business” without us against our wonderful hosts. The food might have been a bit bland, the lack of organisation was at times baffling (especially when it came to signage and stewarding) and there is only so much Super Bock you can drink before you fancy something with a bit more character but otherwise Euro 2004 was a fantastic experience.
The highlights were many. The country itself is beautiful, particularly some of the host cites (if a tad hilly!). The people are incredibly charming, laid back and friendly. The stadiums were stunning (except Coimbra), the ticketing was well organised, allocations were relatively generous and prices reasonable, we got to see and hear thousands of visiting fans from all nations joining together to have fun, and it didn’t cost an arm and a leg to party all night. We could have done with some more goals and it has to be said the football wasn’t as good as Euro 2000 (England and Roonmania excepted) but it was the holiday of a lifetime. If you fancy your own “holiday of a lifetime” then internet sales for the 2006 World Cup Finals in Germany begin on the 1st February 2005… prices begin at 35 euros… fancy a trip to Cologne or Berlin in two years time? I do!