Unfortunately, due to the situation with Coronavirus, it was too big a risk to travel anywhere, so I decided to have a Staycation in Belfast when using up Annual Leave in the middle of the month, walking up hills North, East, South and West, as well as documenting Street Art on the Peace Wall.
Monday was spent at Cavehill. The weather was dull so the photos weren’t that good.
Tuesday was spent at Giant’s Ring, more daylight to work with and a lot better photos, as well as an enjoyable walk.
Wednesday was spent getting photos of Belfast Peace Wall, while on Thursday, I went to Lisnabreeny Hill, but like Cavehill, the weather was dull, so the photos didn’t come out as I hoped.
Friday was the best day of that week for weather and photos, so I headed to Blackmountain, and got lots of photos, travelling along the Ridge Trail this time, as my previous visit saw me head up Divis first.
Two days later saw the return of Hit The North, originally postponed due to Coronavirus and back in it’s original traditional slot of September having moved from it’s new traditional slot of May.
I was out on the day getting photos, and then was out the following week getting photos of the aftermath.
Over for a United match, I was able to take in a Salford City match while I was there. The first thing you see as you walk towards the ground is the floodlights in the shape of the club badge. I managed to capture it in all it’s glory.
Well, that was my favourite photos of 2019-2020, feel free to vote for your favourite, even though i’ve canvassed for what I think you should vote for.
Hopefully, it won’t be too long until i’m back in a football stadium taking photos so I can have a similar poll for 2020-2021.
February 2020 was a strange month of football watching, a month which began and ended on a Saturday, both of which were football free. The football matches sandwiched inbetween were quite good though.
My first football match of the month saw Linfield get a win over Dungannon Swifts to go top of the table, and then cement their place with a win at Warrenpoint Town the following Saturday.
The following weekend, I spent my birthday in Ballymena. Grim, I know. It wasn’t all bad, as Linfield secured a 4-1 win.
Four Goal Fridays continued the following weekend, as Linfield hammered Crusaders 4-0 live on TV.
Usually, these photo round-ups cover one month at a time, but I only got to go to one match in March 2020 because of you know what, a trip to Taylor’s Avenue to see Linfield beat Carrick Rangers.
Leaving Taylor’s Avenue that day, looking forward to the match against Larne the following weekend and the title run-in, unaware of what was to follow.
March was still a better month than April, not a single football match attended. Not even a single photo taken, football or otherwise.
Or May …. Or June.
I had anticipated being at Euro 2020, instead I was stuck indoors as my football watching for the season was officially confirmed as over, and I have no idea when i’ll be in a football ground again.
Be positive, you have to. I’ve already booked to do a Dublin/Bray break to try and blag a ticket for the Last 16 match of Euro 2021 in Dublin.
As I won’t be going to Edinburgh in August, i’m hoping to do a mini tour of Scotland towards the end of the year. I may take in a game while i’m there.
The problem is, waiting to see when crowds are allowed in, I can’t book any football specific trips. When the fixtures are released, I immediately jump in to book a trip to Old Trafford knowing i’ll get a good price. There’s no point booking if I don’t know if i’ll get in.
So, that was 2019-2020, ended prematurely in exceptional circumstances.
Usually, I sign off Photo Diary Of A Football Season by saying i’ll continue to take photos the following season.
There’s no guarantee of that, but as soon as i’m allowed back into a football ground, you know i’ll be taking photos.
A new year, but same old football related photo adventures.
Thankfully, a home game to see in the new year (didn’t really fancy the 212 on New Year’s Day) against Institute, and a 3-0 win for Linfield.
My first Saturday game of the year saw me visit a new ground for the first time. The less said about Linfield’s trip to QUB, the better.
Things got a bit better on the pitch, the weather less so, as I headed to Solitude nine days later in the middle of Storm Brendan to see Linfield go top of the League with a 2-1 win against Cliftonville.
Linfield’s inconsistent form continued with a 0-0 draw at home to Dungannon Swifts the following Saturday.
The following midweek saw my first football trip of the year, to Old Trafford to see United lose to Burnley.
While I was there, I was able to take in another match, Salford City v Accrington Stanley in the EFL Trophy, which meant I was able to visit another new ground for the first time, the second of the month.
The following Saturday, I headed to Windsor Park to see Linfield hammer Glenavon 8-1.
That was then followed by a trip to Larne the following midweek, my first visit to Inver Park since 2005, to see Linfield lose 3-1.
October began with a disappointing trip to Seaview to see Linfield lose to Crusaders.
It got better the following Saturday, with a 4-1 win at Dungannon Swifts.
That was then followed by two quick trips to Windsor Park, to see Linfield beat Ballymena United 2-1, and then hammer Warrenpoint Town 7-0, before the month ended as it started, with a disappointing away defeat for Linfield, this time at Coleraine.
The 2019-2020 was always going to be memorable, due to the contrasting emotions watching Linfield ranging from the highest of highs to the most ridiculous of lows. I’d hoped it would end at Old Trafford before beginning 2020-2021 a few weeks later taking in a couple of European Championship games in Dublin.
Of course, it became memorable in a way that nobody could imagine. My matchgoing season is now officially over, although I had accepted that fate a long long time ago.
At the end of each season, I do a month by month look back at the season just past, so I might as well look back at this most eventful of seasons.
My 2019-2020 football watching season began in mid July at a very wet Windsor Park, seeing Linfield take on Rosenborg in the European Cup.
With the July holidays, I took the opportunity to spend a few days in Dublin. As luck would have it, there were a few football matches on, St Patrick’s Athletic v IFK Norrkoping and Bray Wanderers v Limerick.
Upon my return to Northern Ireland, I headed to Wilgar Park to see a much changed Linfield side take on Dundela in a Pre-Season Friendly.