This could very well be the main highlight for the whole year besides backpacking to Cambodia. Not only was i able to watch Man United live but was able to watch them in action twice !
This only happened because of the recent bombing in Jakarta at the hotel that the team would be staying during their stay there. Though Australia offered 1 million pounds for them to play down under but Sir Alex declined and ended up playing in Malaysia twice.
The crowd for the 2nd game wasn’t as much as the first game but nevertheless i still had fun watching with a bunch of crazy people.
I bought my tickets a few months back when i was back in Penang and it was Angeline who reminded me about the match, surprisingly, LOL. She said she would want to see Man Utd lose. And that’s coming from a hardcore Arsenal fan. Ask her to spell Henry’s full name and she will ask me to fly kites.
Anyway, she was only able to attend the match day itself and thus i was alone for the training day. I met a bunch of people whom i didn’t know but later on was forced to accept their phone numbers and email addresses so that i could send them the pictures T.T
The atmosphere for this first leg of Manchester United’s Asia Tour 2009 was definitely different when i attended Chelsea’s game last year at the Shah Alam Stadium.
Parking alone for the training session was a complete nightmare. Most roads entering Bukit Jalil was jammed up to the highway. I followed a bunch of cars which drove against the traffic and ended up near the Hockey Stadium which coincidentally is the best place to park for any function held at the Bukit Jalil Stadium. Why you must ask ? Because for the training day, the 1st and 2nd match day, i had no problem getting out of the carpark and reaching back in less then 25minutes. Just follow the signboards indicating CarPark F.
Training day alone managed to attract nearly 30 thousand people to watch both the national squad as well as Manchster United train. I was even more baffled when i saw most ‘ang-mohs’ running to the nearby jersey stalls and getting themselves our national jerseys equipped with a strap on their foreheads showing Malaysia, LOL.
Locals are in Red and the ang-mohs in Yellow.
The training lasted for slightly more than an hour. It was really a joy watching Rooney blasting the balls as how he would in EPL.
The day finally came, it was match day !
I realized forums all over the net predicted a landslide victory and this was based on the last scoreline which was Man United 6 – 0 Malaysia. Six nil might be a bit too harsh but i was expecting probably three to four goals.
On the way to the Blue gate, i met Gusman and his dad lining up at the Violet gate. It has been yearsssss since i have seen him. His father definitely didn’t change a bit, lol.
The match was to start at 5.30pm and people were already flocking into the stadium as early as 3pm. Angeline and i followed suit. So in that spare time, i took loads of unnecessary pictures of people with the same replica jerseys and of course camwhoring. With dolphin around, it’s compulsory to do so or i shall face the wrath of the evil dolphin later on.
I was damn proud wearing my jersey as it’s one and only replica jersey i have. The rest are all ermmmm ahem ahem ones, grade AAA to be exact. I was lucky enough to get this jersey with my name on the back together with the number 10 and it was all thanks to Angeline
Having a jersey with a name on it could be a bad idea, especially with my name on it. People kept calling me for no reason and at times a few of them asked which character is that.
It seems anyone who comes with a different jersey especially Liverpool, Arsenal or worst still Man City jersey becomes the focus and will be jeered and made fun off. Like this fella above, he had to bear the constant shouting he gets from our section. But of course everyone knows it’s nothing serious. LOL.
On the 2nd match day too one fella bearing the Chelsea jersey sat a few rows in front of me and he got the same treatment. This time around, Jon, Daniel, Andrew, even Andrew’s sister never gave face, hahahaha. Everyone jeered.
Out of the blue, the section on our left started jeering even louder because someone was in an Arsenal jersey, LMAO. Our section also kaypo and started jeering that fella.
I couldn’t actually see and after zooming in with my camera only did i realized how everyone was staring at this Arsenal fan. LOL. Eventually he left for the higher tier.
This kept on happening off and on at different parts of the stadium. Once you hear jeering, you would definitely see one odd fella being in the center of attention.
The 1st match day was definitely better than the 2nd one simply because no one knows what to expect. Imagine 100 thousand people where mostly were in red and probably a few patches of yellow scattered all over representing Malaysia. No one knew how would Malaysia fair.
In fact, moments before Amri, number 17, scored that audacious goal, he was constantly being booed for his selfish play. In fact every other Malaysian player were being booed too and there was a reason. They just wouldn’t freaking pass. The ball would be brought all the way towards the goal just for them to blast it towards the moon.
Amri became a local hero when he scored the 2nd goal and that’s when most Man United fans were wondering if Malaysia would be able to do the unithinkable.
That’s when Owen, Fabio, Brown and Tosic were brought in to win the game. Owen was under the spotlight especially after signing for United for free.
Five minutes towards the end of normal time, Owen did score after the ball bounces off Giggs who tumbled with the keeper and the whole stadium went berserk ! It was Owen’s first goal for United and it was eventually the winning goal for the game.
As United marched out of the field, one fan somehow managed to get on to the pitch and he ran towards the team. One of the guards or so called bouncers, managed to catch hold of him. Malaysian security then stepped in and held him tightly. That’s one crazy fan. LOL
It was after this game, they did announce that Man United would extend their stay in Malaysia and play a rematch on Monday. On Sunday after catching Ice Age 3 3D (my rating: 6/10) with Angeline, i bumped into Andrew and we both got our tickets from Rock Corner in One Utama.
Home made banners were everywhere. Some were easy to understand, some needed time to decipher and some i just don’t get it -_-!
Some were really creative, LMAO.
This kid was proudly waving a huge Man United flag during the match.
The second match was actually Andrew‘s first. He couldn’t make it for Saturday’s game last minute. That’s why it’s clearly shown on his face how excited he is, hahaha. As for the rest, Jon, Daniel, Joshua and me, it was our 2nd match watching. Semangat gila.
That afternoon, i got a call from Cedric and he said he was also coming since he was staying 10mins from the stadium.
Andrew kept blowing the horn throughout the match, hahahaa.
Man United had a different line up compared to Saturday’s game. Most of the substitutes were given the start. As for the Malaysian team, there weren’t much changes.
This time around, the focus was on Amri. Scoring twice against United definitely made Malaysians believe that finally a player who posses a certain skill to finish in front of the goal. Fans kept cheering his name, some even had jerseys with his name on it. Fans wanted the ball to be passed to Amri so that he can do the exact same thing on Saturday.
But of course all that never did happen. The moon was back on target. The Malaysian keeper took one step forward by kicking the ball towards the substitute bench. The hardcore Malaysian fan in front of me shouted, “Kejap lagi mereka masuk lah, bukan sekarang.”
The final scoreline was 2 nil to Manchester United with Macheda and Owen being on target.
It was really a joy watching them play for both the days and i couldn’t have asked for more. The next time i would be watching them has to be at Old Trafford for sure !