Friday 29 July 2022

My experience at an Ekstraklasa game in Poznan, Poland

I've just come back from a solo trip to Poznan in Poland, and I wanted to share my experience at a Lech Poznan Ekstraklasa home game while I was there! Keep reading to find out how it went...

What is Ekstraklasa?

The Ekstraklasa is Poland's equivalent of the Premier League - their version of top flight football. It was founded in 1926, and is currently sponsored by PKO Bank Polski. There are 18 teams, playing each other twice throughout the season both home and away. The current champions are the team I support: Lech Poznan, who I chose after loving the city so much on my previous visit.

Getting tickets

When it came down to it, getting tickets was fairly easy. They go on sale two matches at a time, so when I first checked they weren't available; I signed up to the site in the meantime and waited for them to come on sale. When they did I logged in, chose where to sit (the difficult part for me!) and purchased my ticket which cost around £12 GBP.

Choosing where to sit was really confusing, but after some Googling I figured out that the ultras (very passionate singing fans who have some sort of organised drummers, massive flags, and general hooliganism going on) sit behind one goal so I knew to avoid that - this article was really helpful!

Getting to the ground

There are tram and bus stops near to the ground, so you can get there really easily from pretty much anywhere in the city; I personally got the number 12 tram from near my hotel, and it was then just a couple of minutes walk around the corner to the stadium itself. There were loads of fans on the tram so I definitely knew I was going the right way!

Away fans have a completely separate entrance for safety reasons, which is wild, but everywhere is really well signposted and I found my correct gate easily.

The game itself

Okay so we lost 2-0 but it was still a great atmosphere; the ultras, scary as they can be if you're not used to it, definitely added a bit of oomph to the whole thing. The stadium was only around half-full which did surprise me, as did the sorry state of the pitch. It's a far cry from the Premier League, put it that way. But I had a great time and really enjoyed being surrounded by Poznan fans watching the match.

Would I recommend an Ekstraklasa match?

As I just said, this league is nothing like the Prem. But would I recommend going to a match if you're in Poland? I absolutely would! As a football fan, I love going to games in general and am aiming to go to as many as possible in different countries just for the experience. So it was great to tick this off my bucket list, and of course Poznan are a team I already had a vested interest in. Overall, for £12 a ticket, yes I'd definitely say you should head to a game while you're away!

Have you ever been to an Ekstraklasa game? Let me know your experience in the comments...

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