Soccer… I Mean Football!

By Kerry Carmena, Foster Undergraduate who is participating in an exchange with the University of Manchester in Manchester, England.

Before coming to the University of Manchester, I only knew a few details about this city. Of course, one key fact I knew about Manchester was how big a deal football was here. It’s safe to say, going to a match was at the top of my “Things To Do” list, while in Manchester. Before I got here, a family friend told me I was only allowed to be a Manchester United fan, not a Manchester City fan. Lucky for me, the university offers discounted tickets for students for United matches.

England Kerry Carmena 2 rotatedA friend and I went to the Students’ Union to get a ticket to a match. After receiving them, we looked at each other and said, “Fenerbahce?” My experience with soccer ended in elementary school, so I knew nothing about the different teams around the world. It turns out, Fenerbahce is a Turkish team. Lots of my European friends were disappointed in me when I told them I had never heard of them before, but then when I accidentally said soccer instead of football, I think they remembered that American football and baseball are more popular in the States.

The match didn’t start until 8, so about 12 of the other exchange students and I went out for dinner before. We ended up missing the bus, so we took an Uber over to Old Trafford. The stadium was much bigger than I expected, but the environment was exactly what I imagined. We were in the highest section, so the players looked like ants, but it was actually very cool because you could see everything on the field.

Kerry CarmenaWe were surrounded by other university students, so it was a very fun experience. Everyone was getting so into the match, yelling and cheering so loudly. I tried freshening up on all of the rules before the match started, but I was still confused during some parts of the match. In the end, Manchester United came out victorious, with a 4-1 win.

If you ever come to Manchester, let alone anywhere in Europe, I would highly suggest going to a football match. It was so much fun and one of my favorite memories so far. I do have to say, though, it doesn’t compare to being in Husky Stadium cheering for the Dawgs!