We watched 2 matches at Soccer City in Johannesburg last week and it was pretty awesome. Planned to come back to PE on Friday, but was then offered tickets for Germany vs England in Bloemfontein (Which is essentially on the way home) and couldn’t resist watching one of the oldest rivalries in football and in general! We struggled to get accommodation, but in the end ended up at an awesome guesthouse, Zanchieta Wild Cat Farm (https://www.wildcatfarm.co.za/). They have lions, cheetahs, karakals, great accommodation and awesome friendly service. We arrived a short while before their shuttle was leaving for the stadium and were given a tour of their animals including meeting Elsa, a lioness who had been reared by Mickey who works at the guest lodge. She had back problems and required multiple operations to even survive which Mickey had to find donations for (literally begging on the street) and now she is almost fully rehabilitated and so tame and loving that we were able to play with her (All 120kgs+ of her!).
After that we left for the stadium and in all honesty I was a bit underwhelmed after seeing both the PE and JHB stadiums. It’s still a good stadium, but the others put it to shame. There was a lot more English support as expected, but there were people flying the German flag dotted around. The first half alone lived up to all the hype and being able to see the likes of Gerrard, Lampard, Rooney and even Beckham, albeit on the bench, was a real honour. The Germans played well and deserved the win, but something has to be done about TV based verification of close call decisions as realistically the English (not even taking into account the times they hit the bar) could have brought themselves back to 2-2 within a few minutes and that would have changed the game completely.
After the game we were picked up just outside the stadium and were back at the guest house not even 20 minutes later which was awesome once more. This was followed by drinks around a raging fire, braai with some of the best steak I have had in some time and hitting the sack early before driving back to PE.