Monday 29 June 2015

TLFG: 29 June - 5 July 2015

Greetings one and all and welcome back to the new season here at TLFG. 

The 'summer' break has been swift with one or two sides commencing their pre-season fixtures already.

It's not just the non-league sides who have been thrust into early action either. On Thursday night Premier League club West Ham United face a fully competitive fixture against FC Lusitans in the opening round of the Europa League.

Unsurprisingly it forms the highlight of this week's fixtures and with adult tickets at only £10 it presents a great chance to see a game at the Boleyn Ground before it shuts at the end of the 2015/16 campaign.

Tickets for the match of the week are only £10 for adults

The only other professional team in action in the capital this week are League Two Barnet. They have an unusual home fixture against Hungerford Town - it's eye-catching because the visitors play three divisions below them in the Southern League and it's an unwritten rule that the smaller club usually hosts such friendlies at this time of year. With tickets also priced at £10 for adults it's unlikely to be a sell out.

In total there are only 13 games that I know about over the next few days with many of them taking place on clubs' training pitches and at hired neutral 3G facilities in schools and leisure centres (make sure you check with clubs before you travel that matches are still taking place and/or the venue hasn't changed). Although most of these will grant free entry, it's not going to be much of a spectacle. You could say this edition of the blog is a soft re-launch with most clubs not really getting into things for another two weeks.

The other point of note is that we have had a handful of new teams join at Step 6/Level 10 this season and some clubs have moved to new grounds at various levels (sometimes meaning they've left our catchment area) so there's some fresh opportunities to groundhop.

I don't have a huge amount to add at this stage. Hope you have a good week and here's to an exciting 2015/16.

If you're going to see a game, whether you're a local or a visitor, please let me know what you've been up to. If you're interested in reviewing a ground within the London area for this blog then get in touch. You might also want to have a go at writing a 'Top Ten' one week. I also very much welcome photos of your football travels.

Got any questions about visiting London? Don't hesitate to ask - be they football or more general travel/touristy queries.

You can contact TLFG through the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or even by good old email.

Please follow this link or click on the tab at the top of the page for all the information you need about how to get a ticket, what's currently available to non-members at London's biggest clubs and any other special offers or promotions which might be running.

Details on all of this week's games can be found in the following match map. If you've never used it before, please note that when there is more than one match at a specific ground you'll only be able to see individual match pins if you zoom right in. If you don't, the pins obscure each other and you might miss them. To avoid this, you can also scroll down the list of games on the left side of the map page to make sure you get all the information.

Also if you're unfamiliar with the English league structure I indicate the level at which an individual league sits in the national 'pyramid' with the Premier League at the top (Level 1) and various minor leagues at the bottom (Level 10). Typically a top level game will see crowds of anywhere between 20,000-60,000. These figures will gradually decline as you go down the leagues until you get to Levels 8-10 where attendances of 150 or less are most common.

It should also be noted that the top four levels are for fully professional teams. Level 5 has a mixture of professional and semi-professional teams, while Levels 6-10 will see most players paid but it will vary from no more than travel expenses at the bottom, right up to several hundred pounds a week at the top (e.g. clubs in the Conference South).

Red pin - Wednesday fixtures
Orange pin - Thursday fixtures
Blue pin - Saturday fixtures

If you have any questions or want advice about watching football in London, you can contact TLFG using the comments section below or via FacebookTwitter or email.