Thursday, 16 June 2011

Beer & Footy

Just one day to go to an important date in the calendar of thousands of real ale drinkers. One which will affect their drinking habits for a period of 9 months.

I’m talking about the announcement of the football fixtures for season 2011/12. I will be looking keenly for Tranmere’s away fixtures at towns with good beer. I will curse if one of my favourite jaunts falls in midweek, when I’m on holiday or at a Belgian Beer Festival.

League 1 has changed substantially for the better next season, from my point of view anyway. A number of southern teams have been promoted or relegated to be replaced by teams that involve less travelling and as a bonus excellent real ales.

Sheffield United, Preston, Chesterfield and Bury (change at Manchester!) are most welcome newcomers. It’s goodbye to Brighton, Bristol Rovers, Dagenham & Redbridge, Norwich, Swindon, Southampton and Plymouth. That’s a lot of miles saved for the committed fan.

Oldham (also via Manchester), Sheffield Wednesday, Huddersfield remain from last season. Walsall isn’t a bad trip, Charlton & Leyton Orient can be pleasant visits to the smoke if Virgin West Coast are behaving themselves.

So play fair you fixture compilers. No Tuesday nights, August dates, Tuesday nights or clashes with ZBF and OBER festivals please for the teams mentioned above. I don’t ask for much.

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