Football World Cup logistics, organisation, and the vuvuzela

Greenpoint football stadium

The Green Point soccer stadium, seen here from the Cape Town Waterfront area, looks to be fast approaching completion. There are still tall cranes looming over the empty stadium, but far fewer than you may recall in photos that I posted in 2007 and 2008. Just take a look at the progress made since June 2007!

If you've been following our recent posts you'll know that we're away from Cape Town on holiday for two weeks, and that Mandy J Watson has been kind enough to help out with a couple of photos, including this one.

This evening Kerry-Anne and I were privileged to watch South Africa and Spain battle it out in a Confederations Cup match in Bloemfontein; since this tournament is a trial run for next year's World Cup, and in light of this photo, I thought I'd give you a reportback on my experience from a logistics and organisation perspective.

First, I guess I should state that I'm not a sports fan, so I think I'm able to view the situation objectively without the excitement that allows fans to overlook the negative aspects of the experience.

So, objectively:

  • It was easy to find parking and it took a matter of 5 minutes to get into the stadium, and head up the stairs to our seats.
  • Finding our seats was fairly easy... we just looked at our ticket, consulted the boards, entered through the correct gate, read the signs, and we were good to go.
  • Apart from the signs giving directions, it seemed that at almost every turn there was a friendly official ready to point us in the right direction.
  • The venue wasn't too crowded, and the seating wasn't cramped.
  • The queues at the ladies' toilets were VERY long at half time. This is normal, of course, but that doesn't mean it's okay.
  • I've never been a fan of the vuvuzela (that long plastic trumpet that South African supporters blow at soccer matches), but to be honest, it really wasn't so bad. They weren't too loud and I have to say that they did add to the atmosphere significantly. They are an integral part of South African soccer culture and it just wouldn't be the same without them.
  • The only time that the trumpets did become annoying was after the match while we were walking through the Loch Logan shopping mall next to the stadium. Googols of fans blowing trumpets in a confined space made of reflective tiles and glass isn't good for one's ears!

My only suggestions are:

  • Think about where you will park your car before the time and how congested the area will be after the match.
  • Buy ear plugs from a music store - you'll still be able to enjoy the atmosphere, even if you find a vuvuzela positioned right next to your ear. :)

6 thoughts on “Football World Cup logistics, organisation, and the vuvuzela

  1. Walshie

    Hi Paul – I was also at the Spain v RSA game & can only agree with your comments… the vuvuzelas really added to the atmosphere in the stadium! I can’t wait for the 2010 WC to come to Cape Town because the vibe & atmosphere in the fan mile area & stadium is going to be amazing…

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