My first stateside game day experience

My first stateside game day experience

Our whole trip to NYC was planned around a game day, in fact, when we booked our flights the game schedule wasn’t even released yet so we made our trip six days from Wednesday to Tuesday just to be completely sure we’d get to see either Jets or Giants during our trip. Our luck just so had it that it was Giants; my fiancé (If you haven’t seen my Twitter feed, he proposed in Central Park just two days before!) is a huge Odell Beckham Jnr fan and who can blame him, what a player!

I don’t think either of us really anticipated quite what it would be like. All we knew was we’d paid around £150 per ticket to be up in the “gods”, but we didn’t care about that so much because we were finally going to our first ever NFL game in the states!

We got a taxi out to the Met Life stadium from Times Square, and as we were driving over a bridge which goes in to the stadium car park, we just saw row after row after row of cars, fans playing games, firing up the BBQ, in to several beers – everyone just getting along and having a great time. In fact, some vehicles even had custom Giants paintwork. Die hard fans, it was incredible!

We had a little wander around the outside of the stadium, taking it all in. We were both so in awe of how amazing everything was. We headed in to the tailgate to find BigBlueBBQ, which you can pay to join for $35 each – all you can eat and drink. In fact, we even got the chance to meet former Giants player from the 1986 team, Williams Roberts. He was such a nice guy; he spoke to us for a good while and even signed a picture for us. We met lots of other fans, and even bumped in to some fellow Brits from London who were just as in awe of the whole situation as we were.

Before we knew it, it was 12:15pm and 45 minutes away from kick off. We “drank up” and headed in to the stadium store so go buy ourselves a Beckham jersey each – Yes, I’m a Seahawks fan but I also collect jerseys of other players around the NFL that I like – and a hat, because the sun decided to come out and I had no lotion on and all I do is burn…! Officially, I was kitted out and good to go to be a Giants fan for the day.

It was time to go and watch the game. The game we had been waiting for, for months. Fans all shouting “Let’s go Giants, lets go!”. The excitement was building more and more. Three escalators up and we reached our part of the Pepsi stand. Through the concourse then out in to the stand, the view was incredible. Completely open, not at all anything like we would see at Old Trafford or Wembley. There simply was not a bad seat in the house, in fact, I felt like I had the best seat there was I just couldn’t believe it.

The game itself was a little slow to start but when Giants finally got their first touchdown it was high-fives galore, you didn’t know these people but they’d high-five the hell out of you! What was also great was that Saints fans were randomly in the mix with Giants fans, no hostility like there would be at a football (soccer for the Americans reading) game. Everyone just getting along; dancing, shouting, screaming.

I could go in to more but I fear it would be a “you just had to be there” situations. However, the overall experience was incredible and I can’t recommend it enough. If you’ve been to a game, please get in touch, I’d love to hear about it and share it here too. If you’ve yet to go to a game, make sure you plan one, I can’t wait to go to another game somewhere!

Here’s a photo gallery from my experience. Enjoy!

 

Liz Bhandari

Liz has covered the NFL for five seasons, and currently serves as Managing Editor for Ninety-Nine Yards and for her own website, NFLGirlUK.com. Since launching the website in 2014, she has made regular appearances on the TalkSport2 ‘All American Sports Show’ with Nat Coombs and in 2016 was ranked No.37 (of 400+) in the “Super Bowl: Top 50 UK Influencers” by marketing software producers Analytica for “igniting conversations” between fans.

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