Manchester City supporters continue partying in Istanbul ahead of Champions League final


Manchester City fans continued partying ahead of their Champions League final in Istanbul, downing pints as the sun came out and temperatures soared to 25c.

Extra barrels of beer and fresh crates were seen arriving at bars linking the cramped downtown area of Nevizade Street in the historic city famous for being where West meets East.

As the Islamic call to prayer rang out from nearby minarets they were drowned out by chants of ‘City, City’ as hundreds of fans sat in the sunshine soaking up the atmosphere.

One restaurant owner was greeted with cheers as he rolled keg after keg down the sloping street from a van that had pulled up with fresh stock.

Shopkeepers, bar owners and restaurant bosses were delighted and said to have been making a fortune with one telling local media:’ I’m so, so happy. My business has never been better, people are spending money like crazy and I’m running out of beer.’ 

Manchester City and Inter Milan fans are in good spirits ahead of the Champions League final

Manchester City and Inter Milan fans are in good spirits ahead of the Champions League final

Supporters of both sides posed for pictures in Istanbul as they soaked up the atmosphere

Supporters of both sides posed for pictures in Istanbul as they soaked up the atmosphere

Families and friends alike gathered in hot spots around the city in anticipation of the match

Families and friends alike gathered in hot spots around the city in anticipation of the match

The crowds are facing a long, nightmare journey to the Ataturk Olympic Stadium tonight

The crowds are facing a long, nightmare journey to the Ataturk Olympic Stadium tonight

Dean and Jill Tattersley, from Halifax, West Yorkshire, were among those who had jetted in to see if City could make history by adding the Champions League to their Premier League title and FA Cup triumphs. 

Nurse Jill, 43, wearing a dress made out of a Manchester City flag, told Mail Sport: ‘We’re both season ticket holders and paid £450 for the game and City are going to do it for the NHS.

‘We’ve heard it’s bit of a journey to the ground so we will be having a few drinks here and then heading over there on the bus or metro – we can have a little sleep on the journey as it’s a 10pm kick off.’

Paul Griffin, from Worsley, Manchester, was in Istanbul with his brother John, three other siblings and their children making a bumper party of 20 and they had flown in with the official City supporters club.

Paul said: ‘I know it’s going to be difficult to get to the ground but put it this way it’s four hours on a plane from Manchester so 90 minutes on a bus or a metro is going to be a doddle.

‘I was in Porto two years ago when we lost to Chelsea and that was an enjoyable day but obviously the wrong result – my divorce went down better – so now we are here to make up for it.

‘I know people say we have spent our way here but compared to some of the other clubs like Chelsea and United we spend our money wisely.

Bar owners rolled barrels of beer through the streets, much to the delight of their customers

Bar owners rolled barrels of beer through the streets, much to the delight of their customers

Supporters wasted little time in drinking beers and bathing in the sun on the day of the final

Supporters wasted little time in drinking beers and bathing in the sun on the day of the final

City supporters in particular are confident ahead of the match as their side chase the Treble

City supporters in particular are confident ahead of the match as their side chase the Treble

‘Plus, the owners have really invested in that area around east Manchester before it was as rough as old boots but they have passion and projects and turned the place around.’

Also in Istanbul was Dan Carr, 26, and his girlfriend Shayna Halliwell, 24, both from Bury, and who both went to the FA Cup final win last weekend against rivals Manchester United.

Dan, whose grandfather Tommy Booth played for City in the 1970s and 1980s making 382 appearances, told Mail Sport: ‘I’ve always been a City fan, thanks for my granddad and this is going to be massive for us if we win.

‘He’s not here but he will be watching and cheering at home. He spent most of his career playing for City and this will mean so much for him and all of us if we win.

‘I’ve seen it’s a bit of journey to the ground and to be honest I’m not quite sure how we will get there yet but we will have a few drinks here and then make our way – we’ll find a way somehow.’

Turkish officials said 125 charter flights from the UK and Italy were expected to land in the three days leading up to the match carrying thousands of fans.

Health authorities said 48 ambulances and eight temporary medical centres had been set up around the Olympic stadium and 180 doctors and nurses would be on duty.

Istanbul governor Davut Gul said 15,000 police would be on duty for the match which is being played at the same venue where Liverpool performed a miracle comeback in 2005 beating AC Milan from 3-0 down at half time.

Meanwhile City fan Noel Gallagher was expected to join fans at a San Diego bar to watch the game ahead of his Saturday night gig in the city.

He is thought to have accepted an initiation from the City supporters club in San Diego to watch the match at the Blue Foot Bar.



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