Travel with the FC Barcelona Players
We get asked many times about this exclusive package “ Do we really travel with the players?” or “Are we really going to see them face to face?” maybe its “ Can we talk to them and get their autographs?” Well last week one of our VIP Clients walked into our offices asking the same questions. As we explained the experience to him he still did not believe it claiming that he had some bad experiences before and needed to be sure that this experience was true. So this time Tony Anagor (managing director of LifestyleDMC) decided to accompany Sami Masni (CEO Fusion AutoCars Texas). This is his first hand experience.
First Hand Account
First of all I would like to say what a pleasure it was to spend the time with Sami Mansi, he was a true gentleman. I decided to accompany him because he had had a very bad experience in the Madrid Vs Barcelona clash on his last visit. He went with a friend and suffered a lot of hostility and abuse from the local crowd. This was mainly because Sami was sat in the Madrid VIP zone wearing an FC Barcelona shirt!! Being from the states he was not aware of the sheer crescendo of raw passion that exists between the two clubs, as he put it “ I just wanted to see a good game” As a passionate FC Barcelona fan Sami wanted to see his heroes in the flesh up close.
Barcelona Vs Getafe 15 September 2012 Kick off 20:00h
The game we chose was an important game against Getafe, a team Barca were expected to beat comfortably. We arrived at the airport at 9am on the day of the game. The Travel with the FC Barcelona Players package includes flight tickets, transfers to and from the stadium and of course entry into the game.
The team were due to arrive at 10.00am and the flight was to take off at 10.30am. Sami and I had a short, tense wait in the empty airport terminal gate 98 which had been cleared of the general public; we were there with a handful of lucky fans eager to see their heroes. Whilst we waited, we chatted enthusiastically with the friendly gate staff and the other fans ( we were 15 in total).
Let the games begin
At 10.05am the doors opened and there was a nervous rush as Tito Vilanova the new FC Barca coach strolled into the terminal looking stoic and determined. There soon followed a rush as the players quickly alighted their bus and headed towards the gate, first came Puyol, then came Busquets, Alves, Villa, Pedro Xavi… it was too much for some people as all of their heroes strode out from one door. How do you get your photo taken with all of them? They were walking in groups of 2’s and 3’s but did not stand still for long. So we had to respectfully approach them and ask if they would mind posing for a photo or signing an autograph. All of the players we asked were obliging and happily posed with members of our supporter’s entourage. Some were even joking with us, Alex Song was extremely friendly sparing a moment to stop and talk with us as I told him that my other favourite team was Arsenal! Dani Alves was also very friendly remembering my client from a previous meeting they had in Barcelona.
The biggest commotion was reserved for the wizard of FC Barcelona himself Lionel Messi. He emerged flanked by a couple of security guards looking serious and ready for business. He obliged with some photos and autographs with the fans but you could see he had one thing on his mind..winning the game!
Overall the players were extremely accommodating considering they play for the best team in the world and they did not did not have to oblige.
The flight was a quiet but surreal affair as we sat just a few rows away from the team. We were in Row 21 and Messi in row 14. The team seemed very relaxed but there was a non nonsense air about the trip. Once we arrived in Madrid we had 6 hours to kill before the transfer to the game. So Sami and took a stroll around Madrid, visiting the Real Madrid Bernabeu stadium. At 18.00 sharp the coach came to pick us up and we were driven on the short trip to the Getafe stadium. As our coach was marked press, we were afforded VIP status upon entry to the parking.
Once in the stadium our seats were very good and we had a clear sight of all of the players. The game was incredible, the orange/crimson wave of deft touches and speed that was FC Barcelona in their away kit was a sight to behold.
Messi came on at half time and did not disappoint, scoring 2 exciting goals which lit the whole stadium up. We were also thrilled to see David Villa get his name on the score card as he steam rollers himself back into the heart of the scoring machine we know as FC Barcelona. Once the game was over the transfers back to the airport were smooth and professional. Unfortunately the Madrid airport did not allow for us to meet or see any players, however once on the plane we able to see them in a much more relaxed and joking atmosphere. Piquet joked with Xavi and Busquets while Dani Alves cracked jokes with Messi and Puyol. Messi was his usual quite reserved character but he allowed himself a cheeky grin when on hearing the news that Sevilla beat Madrid 1-0.
Sami ( our client ) had a fantastic time and was thoroughly bowled over by the experience. I was happy to accompany him and the show that at LifestyleDMC putting a smile on your faces and going the extra mile is what we do best.
By the way Barca won 4-1!
“Tony thanks so much for everything, this was the highlight of my stay in Barcelona and be sure I will be back again ( Sami Mansi USA)”
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