Thrilled as 8,000 Albion fans return to the Amex Brighton News

Thousands of delighted fans were welcomed to the Amex last night for a Tuesday night clash with the newly crowned champions.

For the first time this year, around 8,000 fans watched from the stands as Albion faced Premier League champions Manchester City.

Many fans took advantage of the relaxed coronavirus rules ahead of the game, enjoying pints in city pubs before the 7 p.m. kick-off.

Brett Mendoza, owner of the Caxton Arms in North Gardens, filled his ad with Albion fans ahead of the game.

“There is no table that is wrong for the game,” said Mr Mendoza. “I even go myself, I finish work at 6 pm.”

Coronavirus restrictions were relaxed on Monday, allowing tax collectors to serve people inside.

For the Caxton Arms, that meant an increase in capacity from 34 to 122.

Mr Mendoza said: “We are full and I couldn’t be happier.

“It’s amazing, it was nice to have everyone outside in the garden, but inside was still dead.

“Seeing people inside and out is such a buzz.”

Inside Caxton’s wrapped arms, some Albion fans enjoyed their first pre-game pint since the coronavirus crisis.

Jordan Webb, 26, said: “So buzzing, can’t wait. It’s going to be moving, I know the tears are falling. It will be my first participation in a game since February. ”

Fans have been told to expect delays in entering the stadium due to improved controls.

Conor Webb, 23, said: “We were told it would be a slow process to get into the stadium.

“There are no pints at halftime, only pies.

“It’s good to get back to a feeling of normalcy, even if it’s against the champions and we lose by a serious margin.”

Before going to the game, participants had to complete a self-certification form. Tom Ward, 26, said: “It’s going to be good to be back in the north stand.”

“I can not wait to be there. I have to remember the lyrics of all the songs. ”

Friends Connor Finch-Wright, Nathan Berry, Duncan Stenhouse and Jake Hanks were photographed by the Argus at Brighton station with a policeman who jumped into the snap.

Albion fans entered Wetherspoons ahead of their first comeback match in the stands.

Connor, who sits at North Stand, told The Argus: “It’s great to be back, it’s been over a year.

“8,000 fans should be a great atmosphere, we don’t expect much, it’s just great to be back.

“We have all been separated because of social distancing.”

Fences have been placed on a platform at Brighton station to deal with the queues of fans.

Everyone – unless they were exempt – had to wear a mask at the station. Social distancing reminders were posted on the tannoy.

In the train, some people had to stand due to the lack of seats, however, all the windows of the car remained open.

The club had previously asked fans to drive to the game if possible.

Several coronavirus measures were in place to ensure safety when entering the stadium.

A hand sanitizer station greeted fans as they entered the lobby.

The stewards reminded fans in the stadium and during the queue, masks were mandatory.

The Argus saw enthusiastic fan Alice Botting applaud as she made her way to the stadium 15 minutes before kick-off.

“We don’t even care if we lose 10-0,” said Alice.

“We are really very lively.”

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This notice was published: 2021-05-19 06:03:57