Tunnel at Ayresome Park

Ayresome Park Tunnel

Running onto the pitch at Ayresome Park

I loved nothing more as a player than running out the tunnel at Ayresome Park.

The smell of woodbine, pies and bovril. The grass gave off an aroma as well. The holgate end was always packed irrespective of the capacity.

The crowd would chant my name, Bernie Bernie Slaven, Bernie Bernie Slaven.

I had a ritual before each home game, I would drive to the ground listening to my favourite band at the time U2, I always wore Nike boots and I wore the number 7 jersey and said a prayer. I would always warm up in front of our supporters in the holgate end and would have several shots at the goalkeeper, before returning to the dressing room for our pre match team talk.

We would line up alongside our opponents and run out the tunnel with the power game blaring out the tannoy system.