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Sleepless night awaits Perth soccer fans

While the rest of the city sleeps, manic soccer fans will flock to the pubs and bars of Perth as two popular teams face off in the European Champions League Final.

Fans from Tottenham and Liverpool’s official supporter groups.
Photo left: Ashlie Cullen. Photo right: Carol Houghton.

Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur – two English Premier League sides – will play in the biggest game of the season in Madrid, Spain, on Sunday morning (WA time), with the winner being crowned the best team in Europe.

But as both sides walk out under the lights of the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium, on the other side of the world the official Perth fan clubs of both Liverpool and Tottenham will converge in their hundreds to raucously barrack for their sides.

“We have commissioned The Merrywell at the Crown Casino,” says Official Liverpool Supporters Club of WA President Carol Houghton.

“We will be the only exclusive place in the whole of WA where it will be just Liverpool fans,” she says.

“We’re full capacity, we have 800 people coming along so we sold out completely.

“People are trying to buy tickets on the black market I believe, people are offering to mow peoples lawn, wash their cars, take their dogs for a walk.

“We’ve given the Crown all of our flags and they’re putting them all up, it will be totally our home.”

Across the Swan River from The Merrywell will be a similar gathering of passionate fans, but this group will be wearing the lily-white of Tottenham as they fill the Irish Club of WA in Subiaco.

A typical night out with the OzSpurs supporters club. Photo: Ashlie Cullen.

Perth OzSpurs Supporters Group Chapter Organiser Ashlie Cullen says the interest in the club has more than doubled as Tottenham’s fairy-tale Champions League ride has taken them all the way to the final.

“Up until three weeks ago Perth OzSpurs Facebook group had about 350 members,” says Mr Cullen.

“Since then, I think we’re up to about 750 members; there are a lot of people who have jumped on the bandwagon in the last week or so.”

Much like the exponential growth of Perth OzSpurs’ Facebook group, the interest in Sunday morning’s event at the Irish Club has exceeded Mr Cullen’s expectations.

“At the moment I think we’ve sold 140 out of the 200 first-release tickets,” he says.

“If there is more demand by the end of today then we’ll be able to open up the downstairs area of the Irish Club and we’ll have an extra 200 tickets available, which means we could have 400 at the club.

“It’s going to be an amazing spectacle if we get the turnout, the singing and atmosphere I know we can have.”

For fans of either side the 3am kick-off on Sunday morning means a sleepless night awaits, but Mrs Houghton says real fans will find no issue in surrendering a night of rest for a chance to witness their side perform in one of the biggest games in world sport.

“It’s part of your life if you’re a fan, it’s part of your ritual and part of your culture wherever you are in the world,” says Mrs Houghton.

“Saturday is a great example of that, we could have sold out The Merrywell two or three times over.

“You watch a game irrespective of what time it is on and passionate fans will do that.”

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