After what we had enjoyed at the Brasil/Croatia match, we wanted Alexander and Cameron to share in the experience, but in a more 'controlled' sort of way. The answer to this was to book seats in the Adidas arena, a 10,000 seat mini-stadium set up on the front lawn of the Reichstag (parliament building) to watch the Australia/Brasil game.
I went to the arena to get tickets during the week - they are only 3 Euros each - so I got 12. Interestingly, one of the World Cup sponsors is Mastercard, yet I could only buy tickets with cash! So, with no cash left in the wallet, I had the tickets put aside and went for a walk to the nearest ATM - through the Brandenburg Gate and up on Unter den Linden! Eventually got the tickets so we were all set for Sunday! We had invited the Ramsays, , the McLeish family,(so Meghan,4, could also enjoy it), and some other friends: 'Aussie' Sarah and her French Partner Yann.
Nicole emailed everyone with the following 'rules' of attendance:
"Rules for non Aussies......
1. You MUST cheer for Australia......
2. You cannot wear a Brazil T-shirt (unless your name is Sonia,because each team she has supported so far have lost)
3. If Brazil gets heaps of goals, you must express deep sadness foryour fellow Australian friends.. You may clap at how great the Brazil team are, but your bottom must not leave the seat you are sitting in!" LOL!
It was another hot and humid day - we met Gordon, Michelle and Meghan at PotsdamerPlatz for lunch, then walked over to the 'Fan Meile': about 3 KM of road between the Brandenburg gate and the Angel of Victory Statue (Siegessaeule), which has lots of stalls (beer, food, souvenirs, games..) and lots of big screens. For the big games, they have been closing the fan mile because they have had over 250,000 people go there to watch the matches!
It was not so crowded for us, and we got out faces painted for the match and walked along the fan mile, then over to the Platz der Republik - what used to be the large grassy area in front of the Reichstag. It has now been ashphalted and a 10,000 seat 'temporary' arena (a miniature of the Olympiastadion) has been built there, with lots of small 2 on 2 soccer courts, beer gardens, stalls, etc. Both the fan mile and the Adidas World of Football have very tight security, which is a good thing.
We met Alan, Sonia and Bradley, and Yann and Sarah at the Arena.Our seats were up the back, but we had a good view of the big screen!
We took our seats and watched a great Match! The Aussies did themselves proud, the Brazillians took their chances (and the Aussies didn't)so it finished up 0:2. Australia can still qualify for the next round by getting a draw or better against Croatia.
The kids all had a great time, but it showed us that this was about the right level of introduction - taking them to a match or a crowded fan mile to see a game would not really be that much fun for them. 90 minutes was a bit too long for them.
We walked over to the new Hauptbahnhof (th enew central train station, only opened last month)disappointed (but proud), caught the train home, had quick baths and dinner and then all collapsed into bed!