My First Footy Match

By Constance Iliadis

After numerous years of watching the odd footy game on TV and watching my dad and sisters go berserk over what I thought was a bunch of silly men chasing around a leather ball full of air and occasionally kicking it through some poles, they invited me to the footy. I have never been a big fan of footy. I am the kind of person who might come into the lounge room with five minutes to go to see Collinwood thrash a team so I could brag about it to my friends.

However, I have been to the footy and I remember the first time well. I was about eight at the time and it wasn’t a particularly nice day.  I would have described the weather as gloomy and it seemed to put me in a bad mood. The clouds were hanging low and the sky was full of dark grey colours. Rain looked like it could pelt down at any minute. Not the kind of weather I would want to be going out in, but I reluctantly agreed.

We boarded the train at Eaglemont and as we travelled closer and closer to the MCG, more and more people got on. I could feel the atmosphere and passion about the footy beginning to grow. I didn’t admit it at the time, but I was starting to become excited and a little bit curious as to what it would actually be like to be inside the stadium with so many people, who are so passionate and a little bit crazy about footy.

We got off the train at Jolimont and as we walked to the MCG, there were hundreds and hundreds of people in their black and white or red and black jerseys going to the game. As we walked down the long stretch of road with the elm trees hanging down on either side of us, there were people in florescent jackets bellowing about selling the latest Footy Record magazine! They reminded me of the men at the Queen Victoria market on Saturday’s who scream out about buying their bananas for $1.99 a kilo!

We then walked into the stadium and started the treacherous hike up the stairs to the third floor. I shouldn’t really say walked, dragged is a better word to use. My sisters practically dragged me up the flights of stairs ignoring my desperate cries for a rest. When we finally reached the third floor of the MCG I was taken aback at how many people were around us in swarms of red, black and white.

As the game progressed I came to find I was actually enjoying myself. I was enjoying the atmosphere of the footy, how there was a sense of community among many other Collingwood fans and of course I was enjoying the famous meat pies and hot chips! I even decided to get into the true spirit of the game and wear a Collinwood scarf and wave a Collinwood flag. I was getting so worked up and taken away with myself and waving the flag I accidently whacked the lady who was sitting in front of me right across the head! She didn’t seem too pleased…..

From the day I first experienced the footy and the atmosphere, passion and sense of community, I have enjoyed it ever since. I think football is part of Australian culture and I will never forget my first footy match, what I felt when I was there and how I whacked that Essendon supporter in the head with my Collinwood flag!



  1. Danielle says

    hahaha i see a pattern here Constance!
    I once whacked a Carlton supporter in the head with my Collingwood flag when i was a kid, he
    probably deserved it though :)

  2. Lord Bogan says

    Great work Constance. I really like how you set the scene and then described the atmosphere unfolding along with your thoughts and emotions.

    Danni, I can relate to whacking Carlton supporters, not that I would condone it publicly.

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