Wellington Phoenix's own teenager football writer Dan Moskovitz had a memorable away fan experience in Melbourne and filed this exclusive report.
There are two things that all football fans share: love of the beautiful game, and the belief that anyone who doesn't support your team is bonkers.
With Wellington Phoenix going to Melbourne, some expiring air points, and an invite from a cousin, I headed to AAMI park to see Phoenix take on Melbourne City. Now, I would be viewed as the bonkers away fan.
AAMI park has quite a few differences to our cake tin. For one, you are really close to the pitch. When the Melbourne City subs, which included Tim Cahill as well as former Phoenix right-back Manny Muscat, went to do their warm ups, both sets of fans were cheering them on (although our cheering was mainly for Muscat) and begging Cahill for a selfie.
Only one fan was able to, as towards the end of the subs’ warm up, a fan wearing a Phoenix shirt sitting in the away section had a selfie taken with Cahill.
Another difference was that unlike most stadiums in the league, the seat colours, green and grey, did not match that of either kits of Melbourne Victory or Melbourne City.
But being an away fan had lots of similarities to being a home fan as well. We did quite a bit of chanting of “Oh Wellington is Wonderful”, just this time, it was harder to get our voices heard across the entire stadium.
When the ref chose to give Melbourne City that debatable penalty, we strained to get our voices heard to the ref, trying to tell him that he was bonkers. I had been really hoping to take my shirt off in the 80th minute, and rub it into all the City fans. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to do that.
It was a great experience going to Melbourne and seeing Phoenix play an away game, but there's nothing better than watching Phoenix at home at the cake tin and I can't wait to be back in January. I hope to see plenty of you there!