Huddersfield ‘mass exodus’ expected as thousands of football fans head to London

Tens of thousands of fans will make the four-hour journey from Huddersfield to London this weekend as the city’s two biggest teams head to the capital in search of glory.

Some 35,000 Huddersfield Town fans are expected to travel to Wembley on Sunday as the Terriers take on Nottingham Forest in their bid to achieve the holy grail of English football – the Premier League. The Huddersfield Giants have been unable to confirm how many tickets the club has sold to fans ahead of the Challenge Cup Final against the Wigan Warriors.

The match venue, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, has a capacity of almost 63,000 spectators. It means Huddersfield could resemble a ghost town at the weekend when fans travel to the capital and dream of cutlery.

Read more: Financial windfall for Huddersfield Town or Nottingham Forest announced ahead of play-off final

The Huddersfield Town chief executive sent out a rallying cry to Terrier fans this week, announcing that ticket sales for the play-off final were “really strong”. “We will be around the 35,000 fans who supported us on this memorable day in 2017,” he said.

“We all really appreciate your support – we know times are still difficult financially and that the cost of going to London and supporting the boys is not insignificant. It will be great to see you all in the home of English football this weekend.”

Speaking to Sky Sports ahead of the weekend’s two big games, Giants head coach Ian Watson said: “It’s huge and you’d think Huddersfield would be empty on Saturday and Sunday. It’s one of those things that doesn’t usually happen, where two teams sharing the same stadium in the same city and municipality reach two major finals.”

Huddersfield's Chris Hill and Jermaine McGillvary celebrate after defeating Hull KR
Huddersfield’s Chris Hill and Jermaine McGillvary celebrate after defeating Hull KR

The mass exodus of fans means there could be travel disruptions on both Saturday and Sunday as excited fans board trains and buses. The Huddersfield Giants have confirmed their dedicated coaches will leave John Smith’s Stadium at 8am on Saturday.

The coaches will head back to Huddersfield half an hour after the final whistle. Fans have been warned that there is little to no parking available outside Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The official bus trip for the Huddersfield Town v Nottingham Forest game is sold out, according to the club. A message on the club’s official website reads: “The official bus trips are now sold out. The coaches will leave John Smiths Stadium at 8.45am sharp on Sunday.

Parking is available at the stadium on a first come, first served basis. In addition to the upper level of the St Andrew’s Road car park, we will also be opening the Gasworks Street car park due to high demand. Both car parks are open from 7 a.m..”

Huddersfield Giants meet Wigan Warriors at 15:00 on Saturday, while Huddersfield Town and Nottingham Forest play at 16:30 on Sunday.

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