Plymouth Argyle have sold over 1400 tickets for their long trip to Sunderland at the weekend in a magnificent show of support for the Devon club.
It is an eight hundred mile round trip from Plymouth to Sunderland and back, and three supporters’ coaches will be leaving Home Park at 4 am on Saturday.
The Green Taverners Supporters Club have also arranged for twenty-five fans to fly to the north-east of England for the weekend. They will travel by plane from Newquay to Leeds-Bradford on Friday, and stay in a hotel in Leeds before continuing their journey onto Sunderland the following morning.
Other fans will be travelling from across the country by a variety of means to Sunderland to watch the match.
Those who travel will be hoping for a repeat of the last time Plymouth played at the magnificent 49,000 capacity Stadium of Light when substitute Nick Chadwick scored the winner in a 3-2 victory in August 2006.
It promises to be a great atmosphere in the North-East with Sunderland marketing the match to home fans as a retro day, using the old traditional ship badge on promotional material for the game. With both towns being ports they’ve labelled the match as ‘battleships’, with Argyle ‘sailing into the Port of Sunderland’ and that they need ‘all hands on deck’ in their promotion push.
— Sunderland AFC (@SunderlandAFC) February 25, 2019
The use of the old traditional badge for this fixture as got Sunderland supporters talking and is an excellent example of modern marketing employed on social media by EFL clubs.
By contrast, Plymouth supporters are travelling in numbers because it is the old fashioned attraction of a great day out in a fantastic and rarely visited stadium.
It offers an interesting comparison of the old and the new methods of attracting supporters.
One thing is clear; the game is alive and well outside the Premier League and Championship bubble with both clubs supporters a credit to the EFL.