Archive for June 14th, 2009
The party goes on for CD Tenerife

Hardly time to sober up before heading to Santa Cruz today for the official reception for the CD Tenerife team. The police and Guardia must love CDT, it was unlimited overtime as the forces of good took up key positions around the entrance to the capital. I met some of the Armada Sur up by Plaza General Weyler, it was heaving, but we found a good spot just down the road by the bridge over the Barranco Santos, and waited for the open top bus.

Cars bombed by, waving flags as the crowds swelled, and it was clear it was going to be a late start. TV Canarias had a camera in a helicopter keeping an eye on the progress of the bus from Los Rodeos airport to Santa Cruz, when the bus swung into view, the crowds went wild. The players were clearly loving the attention, sadly yesterdays hero Kome was missing as he was back on duty for Cameroon.

Having got a few pics, we dived through the back streets, stopping for a beer, before hitting the Plaza de España. It was heaving, a giant stage was the focal point of the attention, and many people were already in the lake. As the team bus arrived and the players transferred to the Cabildo balcony, fire crackers and smoke bombs went off adding to the party mood. The players, a little worse for wear, led the singing and the crowd gladly joined in. I left them to it after a few hours but it looked like another long night, still another party to go with the last game at home next week-it’s a hard life.

Promoted, Kome fires CD Tenerife to glory

All the years of suffering slipped away yesteday at Girona as CD Tenerife clinched their place in La Primera with a 1-0 win. It was a fantastic day with around 1,000 CDT fans invading the Catalan city, and dancing, and singing on the terrace and then on the pitch.

It started at an unearthly hour, I got picked up by The General and a few of the troops, and we headed to Reina Sofia airport. The concourse was already a sea of blue and white, some of the Canarian lads were already at the bar and limbering up. The check in staff had fun putting the flags, banners and drums through their machines, bu it was a pretty smooth process. Once on the plane, the singing started, our Halcon Viajes tour reps even led some of the singing on the microphone, and at one point the captain cut in with a tune.

Landing at Girona, I was surprised what a huge airport it is, very busy with mainly British passengers from RyanAir, they seemed startled at the mob of all singing, all dancing Tenerife fans, the shuttle buses from the plane were bouncing up and down as we drove across the tarmac and the pick up area outside the airport soon became a mass of Tenerife voices.

The coaches, with a police escort, took us into the heart of Girona, I had always thought of it as an after thought to Barcelona, but even with a limited tour I could soon see the beauty and history of the city. Once dropped in the centre we found a bar – of course – as a base to phone others who had arrived in advance. Trust us to find the only Chinese bar in the city, the staff were not keen on us taking bottles away as we looked for friends, nor were they taken with us putting up our flags and banners, but they were won over as the till started to ring.

The General did a good impression of a waiter, carrying a full tray of drinks one handed-until he dropped the lot, we just about salvaged the precious liquid. Moving on later, we joined the biggest group of CDT fans in another plaza, some of the passers by were less than impressed by being picked up and danced around by well oiled Canarians but the bar staff were great, even bringing out a large round of free shots. We got our times a bit mixed and arrived at the ground early, so had to adjourn to another bar till kick off.

The Girona ground only holds 6,000 and has a strange grass bank at one point, it seemed a bit like one of the old non league grounds I used to visit. The surround wall was low and never going to deter us from spilling onto the pitch, a fairly even game exploded after 40 minutes as cult hero Daniel Kome pounced on a half chance to give CDT the lead, and the blue and white wave washed onto the playing surface. We only needed a draw to go up but with Sergio Aragonoses in commanding form in goal, we were never going to surrender that lead. The final whistle was met with an almighty roar as we swamped onto the pitch to congratulate our heroes. Kome had been substituted in the second half and was touring round with his camera, he got mobbed and at one point was knocked over-whoops. The players came out among the fans and the CDT officials took their bows in the stand as “Chicharrero” the club anthem was sung with pride and power.

We had to fly back out of Barcelona, just down the road from Girona? I dont think so, it took us about 90 minutes for our coaches to get there and we were rushed through to our waiting plane. The Guardia Civil kept me waiting as they detached all the poles off the flags I was carrying – not even time for a cheeky beer. Most people were knackered by the time we took off, but a few more beers flowed and the singing carried on. So now its another party, I have to drag my carcass up to Santa Cruz for the open top bus parade and reception, I’m loving every minute of it.