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Taking children to matches

After a bit of parental advice please - my little one is almost 2 and I'd love to start taking him to Adams Park, but feels maybe too young still? Any experience of taking children to matches? View on the right age to start?

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Comments

  • 2 is too young. 5 upwards depending on the child. Our grandson started at 6 and he’s now 8 and loves it.

  • Can he play centre-half?

  • I'd agree with @MBS. I have a little otter who has only just turned 3 and I'm going to leave it another year before asking myself this same question. Maybe try (if allowed by the Mrs @FmG) watching a few games on TV with them? That way, you can gauge their interest and how long they can last for? I know its a completely different concept with the atmosphere and seeing a game live but it might just help with the decision making?

  • He’s probably too young to be interested in much of the game, however it’s not all about footy. It won’t be massively busy on Saturday so a good chance for him to soak up the walk up Hillbottom Road, the village and the stadium.

    With the weather being good this weekend it will also be ideal in the Family Stand.

    Make sure you take plenty of other things for him to do but not phones or electronic games otherwise that will be expected going forward. Pencils, paper etc. Take some of his favourite snacks too.

    I would get to the ground after 2.30 and leave on about 85 mins or earlier if he’s had enough.

    It’s a great opportunity for you and your son to bond and you to watch Wycombe, you just won’t be able to watch all the time as your son will demand attention.

    Good luck

  • Thanks for the advice.

    I've taken him to see Marlow a few times last year which he seemed to enjoy but easier for him to toddle around a bit when he lost interest. Probably the sensible thing would be to do a few more Marlow matches this year before stepping up to AP. I think maybe I'm too keen to share my love of Wycombe with him!! I'm going to have to adjust my own match day experience when the time does come, but think it'll be a price worth paying.

    @ReturnToSenda seems to be more interested in throwing thing than kicking then so far, but I have ever intention of culturing a future Wycombe star

  • @FmG Seems like he'll make an excellent Goalkeeper!

  • I'd say 2 is probably too young for them to be fully interested, though possibly excited by all the noise and general atmosphere. I took my lad to watch Oxford City til he was 6 - he could watch the game intermittently or just wander/run about for the rest of the time.

    He's a fully paid-up STH at Wycombe now, so the future is bright if you persevere.

  • I took my eldest lad along with me when he was 9 (1990).

  • Once children can do "limbs" they are ready to go to a match!

  • I think they have to be interested or nobody has any fun! Also as has been pointed out before taking kids into the Family Stand upsets some!😁😁😁

  • @railwaybeth's first game was a 4-1 home defeat at age 8. My son first came a little while later but he was a couple of years younger. He spent his first game repeatedly climbing the steps with his mother. I first went to Loakes Park when I was 8 or 9 - I had been to a league matches at Stamford Bridge and the Manor Ground before then but they were no fun.

    My advice would be not to expect them to want to come every week.

  • Matt was almost 6 (and Adam approaching 9) when i first took them to Adams Park in 1993 but that was also my first time of going.

    There is a lot more fan interaction with the players now than there was back then partly thanks to the Family Stand being closer to the pitch.

    But it is their attention span that will be the issue and could also affect your own enjoyment of the game so I would agree that 2 is probably a little early.

  • My son went to his first game at 5 (Accrington at home last year). Loved it but got bored.

    Took him to the Mk Dons defeat at home (when fans chanted about Bayo and he picked up on it). I vowed to never take his young ears to a game again.

    Roll on Wembley....he LOVED it despite the result.

    He now has season ticket and can't wait for Burton (and buying the new red kit that I promised him).

    2 is far too young in my opinion. From a selfish point of view, he will not make it enjoyable for you.

  • edited July 26

    I asked the same question on the Gasroom about 6 years ago when my firstborn son was 2 years old. The general consensus then was 6-7.

    I was patient, but when we got promoted to League One last (2018), age 4, I took him to the promotion party at home to Stevenage on the final day. He was v. excited pre-match, enjoyed the opening moments, but then said he needed the toilet. We missed the only goal of the game (Bloomfield, 19) whilst stood in a portaloo out the back of the away stand which for that game had been offered up to home fans. He then proceeded to nag me for food for the remaining 20 minutes of the first half; before I had to get the iPad for the second half, so that I could actually watch some of the match. We both enjoyed the trophy presentation though.

    Now aged 8, he has been 10 or so times, and he is now Wycombe mad. Outside of school, he very rarely wears anything but a Wycombe kit, and on a matchday will sit still and enjoy the action (so long as there is a bag of Haribo on hand). Disappointingly we have never been lucky enough to pick one of the many 4-3, 5-5, 3-2 games that would grab a young one's imagination. He/we have had to make do with the chess-like 1-0's; or the humbling 0-2 Wembley outing vs Sunderland. Much more like my upbringing!

    In summary, my recommendation would be to hold off taking him until 6 years old, if you can, so that you can both enjoy the day. But when that day comes, it's great having them with you for the special moments.

  • i agree with the general consensus that 5-6 is about the earliest you should take a child and expect any decent involvement with the match.

    if you just want them to experience the atmosphere and feel of it though take them at any age but expect to leave after 15 minutes of football as that will be more than enough.

    it will also allow them to come on Gasroom 14.0 in 50 years time and boast they saw their first game when they were 2 (and don’t tell they you had to leave as they were driving you and everyone around you mad after 10 minutes…)

  • You should also accept that bringing your child to football matches does mean that they will be tens of thousands of pounds poorer over the course of their lifetime and therefore will only be able to afford a cheap care home for you to tell everyone every 30 minutes about the time that Searle won the league for us with 5 minutes of the season left

  • I started taking my twin girls to Clapton CFC at about 5 or 6. They loved it, but for all sorts of not-football reasons like the number of dogs there are there to play with, the scaffold that they get to climb on, the drum that the ultras let them bang from time to time. Can't get them interested in Wycombe unfortunately because none of those things are at Adams Park.

  • This reads like the club provide the dogs - what a great idea

  • Could be true.

  • Took my twin girls a few times to Adams Park (since we moved up north) but never really got them that hooked on the football

    Fashion wise however they are more than happy to wear the Quarters out and about round town and on assorted pub crawls

  • Bringing my 3 kids the game on Saturday, eldest is 6 then 4 and my youngest is 2 (3 in October). £54 for the 5 of us seems reasonable in the family stand. My youngest is disabled but managed to get him a seat at the front for his pram/chair.

    I wouldn't normally bring him, but he come last year for the Accrington game and got some great pictures and met some lovely people.

    Going to get them all the new home kit and thats one of the reasons I'm bringing them all so i can get the right sizes.

  • That's going to be a very expensive day out.

    I hope you've got help with three U7's.

  • i Wouldn’t recommend buying a GK jersey for the 6 yo. Could end up closer to the action than you may expect

  • Funny you say that, she was training for her new team before and had the pink one on, got stopped a couple of times asking what kits that.

  • edited July 26

    First game May 1968, Newcastle 3-4 Man City. 46,000 crowd…I was 6 and we went in the Gallowgate end. I think my Dad was keen to go as City won the league with this result and he was a Manchester born (Collyhurst) man!

    In those days you could turn up and pay cash on the gate. And I was sent to the front to stand right by the corner flag with my brother.

  • This is spot on, I wanted to take my son at a young age but in the end I was glad I waited until he was 6, as he really enjoyed it, did not get bored, and most importantly wanted to go again.

  • The few games I’ve taken my 7 year old daughter to have been disappointing, but she watched the first 65 minutes of the playoff final before realising we weren’t going to win.

    We went to the lionesses game Vs Norrhern Ireland and she absolutely loved it when they were smashing g the goals in but paid less attention at the start.

    When I got into Wycombe I was probably about her age. The first 8 games or so we always seemed to win 4/5-0. But that was the early 90s

  • You have clearly lived a very full footballing life @Forest_Blue !

  • My first game was a County Forest friendly at Meadow Lane...must have been in the 1970s...The Tiswas team were the half-time entertainment chucking buckets of water about.

  • I bought my boy from 3 to watch WW , he is now 11 and still loves it

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