UNAM FC v Touch and Go, Sunday 8th February 2015, 2pm

1 - opening shot

Most of the football teams in the Namibian Premier League are based in Windhoek. That’s not surprising as most Namibians are based in Windhoek. The geographical imbalance meant that Jen and I got the chance to see another game on the Sunday before we headed south in the direction of the Fish River Canyon.

In theory we could have seen two games at the University of Namibia Stadium. There was a match between Rebels and Julinho Sporting Club scheduled for noon followed by the UNAM FC v Touch and Go fixture straight afterwards at two o’clock. We got there at 11:30am only to find the ticket windows unmanned and to be told by a steward that they would open ‘just now’.

View from outside.

View from outside.

‘Just now’ is about as vague as it gets over here. ‘Now now’ is the expression for imminently, whilst ‘just now’ could mean anything from ten minutes to next week.

Forty five minutes later the window opened and we bought our thirty dollar (£1.70) tickets. The latest advice was that a game would start at half past twelve and this was backed up by the information on the ticket. It’s a shame that nobody had mentioned it to the newspapers.

3 - ticket

The stand appeared to have been constructed from chipboard, but at least it had a roof. I was prepared to risk it disintegrating to get a bit of shade though. There weren’t many people in there early on but the crowd swelled to around a hundred or so eventually.

Perhaps someone had been expecting more people to turn up as there were a dozen baton wielding security men lining the gravel running track. Still, I suppose you never know what japes students will get up to next.

View across the chipboard stand.

View across the chipboard stand.

Half past twelve came and went without any sign of the players. Eventually the UNAM team appeared for a warm-up with the obligatory university team nickname ‘Clever Boys’ on their training tops.

The game finally started at two o’clock, which I suppose is just as the newspaper stated. It was the cancellation of the noon game beforehand and the misinformation about the actual start time that was so frustrating. We could have stayed at the cricket had we known that nothing would happen until mid-afternoon.

View to the right.

View to the right.

UNAM were in white with red shorts whilst Touch and Go were in yellow and maroon hoops. Anyway, Touch and Go? Who would name a team something like that? Jimmy Savile?

View to the left.

View to the left.

The pitch was in poor condition, although I suppose the Namibian climatic combination of strong sunshine and infrequent but heavy rain isn’t really conducive to a Wembley standard pitch. Maybe the university should offer a groundsman degree and get those students to spend their days looking after the grass.

Early action.

Early action.

Watching the two o’clock game hadn’t really been in our plans as we needed to get on the road, but there was no way that I was going to hang around for two and a half hours without seeing some football and so we stayed for the first fifteen minutes. Nothing worth mentioning happened and we left with the game goalless. I checked afterwards and and learned that Touch and Go had won three-nil.

 

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