Opinion: The Stretford End embodies the mad passion of Man Utd fans everywhere

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I decided to move to the Stretford End in the summer of 2009. I could use a bit of creative licence here and claim this was for emotional or spiritual reasons but, honestly, it was because I needed to save cash. I was a student at that time, and skint. Season tickets were simply cheaper in the Stretford End than the North Stand.

 

But I felt a real pride in moving there. The Stretford End is acknowledged, worldwide, as the beating heart of Old Trafford.

 

That reputation derives from the 1960s and the 1970s, I think, when the youngest and most passionate fans used to pack themselves in there, lending the team a unique kind of delirious, wild, devotional support.

 

You can see it on old footage. Hear the noise that follows Denis Law’s famous non-goal in the 1969 European Cup semi-final against AC Milan; or the wild, swaying celebrations that greeted Sammy McIlroy’s winner in a legendary 3-2 win over Sunderland in November 1974. That latter game was in the Second Division, in front of 60,585. 

 

United were the best-supported team in the country that season, after being relegated! And the Stretford End was the most visible symbol of that delirious, devotional, unmatched support. The stand embodies the mad passion of being a Red.

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