Once there was a place in every stadium which was the heart and soul of every ground, the parts of a ground which took on legendary status. Kudos fans would travel from near and far, and at Chelsea’s beautiful and big ground we had the Shed.
This was the place where rival fans throughout the 70’s and 80’s would fear to tread, and for a 6 year old watching the games from the West stand it would be the one area of the ground which my attentions would be drawn towards more so than any other.
It was also the place where a player’s inauguration would take place. Remember when Mark Hughes stood in front of the Shedenders on his debut as we roared “Who the fcuk are Man United”… 2 minutes later with his baptism complete, a star was born and the chants of HUGHSEY HUGHSEY filled around the Bridge. Great memories.
I can hardly remember any away fans apart from maybe the odd Champions League game. Macaiba Haifa, if I remember, were in the ground an hour or so before kick off and they were at there own Champions League final that day, similar to how it must feel if you are Burnley, QPR, West Ham or Spuds or any away fan coming into the hallowed part of the Bridge which was The Shed.
How sad to use a past tense for such an iconic part of the ground. The Bridge, and the fans in the Shed is and forever always will be the only place to be.
When the away fans sat in the east stand – which they did under Ranieri – we came second and got to the semis of the champions league. The point is, I never heard Hoddle or any of our other managers complain.
Anyway, giving the away fans the added incentive of being in the Shed on there holiday down to or across London, which most fans could and would have only dreamed about or had nightmares about in the 70’s and 80’s and 90’s just does not add up, and in my mind will never, ever be right.
The fact that we are also officially in Recession also adds weight to the fact that away fans, who can enjoy the spectacle of seeing a football ground not in an industrial waste land can treat it like a big day out when they play the Pride of London, watch nice samba style football.
Anyway, we have the league still within our sights, which I still think is amazing given the actions and efforts of certain players, Scolari is genuinely liked, maybe not by the media, who swore blind he could not speak English before he joined us. There is also maybe by a section of the crowd who were waiting to say I told you so.
If you would like to reclaim the Shed, give the cheaper tickets back to our fans and give those visiting fans their rightful places back in the east stand lower where they belong, then lets get behind the cause as soon as it can be done, if not now then for the start of next season.
For some of you maybe the away fans in the Shed may not be a problem, for me its something that I hope we can look back to as a major faux pas, a mistake, or an attempt to move ‘the away fans away from the best seats in the house’ or the away fans from abusing a manager who played a special part in our history. That’s the past.
Scolari is now the manager, we the fans are the lifeblood of every club, and the Shed is where the soul of the Bridge should remain, and in my mind will always be, Ruud, Vialli, Ranieri, JM, they are all gone, the King is Dead long live the King.
Get behind Scolari, and every player who is lucky enough to wear the Chelsea blue, and I for one hope the club will act swiftly to return the away fans back to where they belong sadly for health and safety reason on top of the roof of the west stand is not available, so the east stand will have to do.
Win or Lose LOVE the BLUES