Friday, February 27

Newcastle travel, pub and hotel guide

St James's Park
Wednesday March 4, kick off 7.45pm


Out of a capacity of 52,387, United fans have got 2,757 in Level 7 of the Sir John Hall Stand at the north end of the stadium.

For the first time, the away end is directly behind the goal (the purple blocks in the stadium plan below).

It's a long way up, but there are lifts for disabled supporters.

Tickets are priced at £40 adults, £32 for over 65s and £22 for under 16s.

All tickets have been sold and tickets have been posted out. It is worth checking with United's ticket office for returns on 0161 868 8000.

World Ticket Shop is selling tickets for £130.50 each.

Home end tickets are on general sale now priced from £35 to £45. (The £35 Leazes Corner tickets are in the Newcastle singing/standing section though it is right next to the United end).

See all prices here. Call the Newcastle ticket office on (0191) 2611571.


The match isn't on TV, but it will be shown online in a few places. Check here four hours before the game for links. For the best viewing, download the Sopcast player.


Car - £36.
If you're using a sat nav or a routeplanner, the stadium postcode is NE1 4ST. The Life Centre car park postcode is NE1 4EP.

The basic route is M62, M1, A1, A184. It takes about two-and-half-hours. There is one set of roadworks in the Harrogate area of the A1 and, if you're travelling at rush hour, expect a build up around Leeds at J27 of the M62.

Petrol will cost roughly £18 each way.

Parking – free

There are three options option to you.

Pay up to a tenner for parking right outside the ground. But it is absolutely rammed getting out after the game and you're still a good distance from the A1 escape route.

Pay £1 per hour to park at the Life Centre (pictured left) car park, which is next to the train station and a 10-minute walk to the ground through the city centre.

The brilliance of this is that it will take you about five minutes to get back onto the motorway after the game.

To reach it, leave the A1 for the A184 (signposted Newcastle City Centre). Then go over the Tyne Bridge and take the first left, a left at the roundabout and then next left.

You'll see the car park on your right. When you leave, take three more lefts and you'll be on the bridge heading onto the A1.

If you can be bothered to walk an extra five minutes, you can find free street parking spaces in the industrial area right by the Life Centre car park. There aren't many reports of break ins, but park at your own risk.

Train - £35
An off-peak return from Manchester to Newcastle Central Station (pictured right), which you can buy on the day, costs £61. But you can save £26 if you buy in advance.

An advance one-way ticket restricts you to travelling on a particular train and you must buy it in advance:

10:27 - £24
11:27 - £24
12:27 - £21.50
13:27 - £24

21:47 - £13.50.

Getting there is no problem, getting back is. Unless you make the 21:47 train (which is possible, but I wouldn't bank on it) then you will be reaching Piccadilly at 04:10.

Though a request has been made to First/Transpennine Express to delay the departure of the 21:47 train by 20 minutes for the benefit of fans.

Manchester to Newcastle

Don't leave before 10am as prices are much more expensive before that time.
Journey time is between two hours and 30 minutes and two hours and 45 minutes. (D = direct, Y = change at York)

Departing Piccadilly
10:07Y, 10.27D 10:57Y, 11:07Y, 11:27D, 11:57, Y, 12:07Y, 12:27D,

12:57Y, 13:27D, 13:57Y, 14:07Y, 14:27Y, 15:07Y, 15:27D, 15:57Y,

16:07Y, 16:56Y.

Once at the station, cross the road and head up the alleyway past Greggs.

Keep going until you come to a road with an off-licence on the corner.

Walk up past the off-licence and then along the castle wall path.

The path bends to the right past China Town and then bends to the left. The stadium is right in front of you from there, but the away end is at the furthest end.

Newcastle to Manchester
Leave Newcastle: 21:47
Arrive: Piccadilly: 00:54

Leave Newcastle: 22:46
Arrive York: 00:16
Leave: 01:46
Arrive Piccadilly: 04:10

Coach - £21
United are running coaches to the game with places priced at £21 per person. They leave from the Old Trafford W2 car park at 3pm. Book here.

Megabus doesn't run coaches between Manchester and Newcastle and

National Express doesn't have any coaches returning after the game.

But if you're staying over, you can book now and get the 7am coach from Newcastle Coach Station to Manchester Chorlton Street for £1 one way.

There are also National Express coaches home leaving at 9.15, 11.10, 13:35 and 14:45 all taking about five hours and 15 minutes.

On the way there, coaches take between five and six hours and leave Chorlton Street at 08:30, 10:30 and 12:30. One way tickets cost £20.

Raffertys (pictured left), in Pink Lane, is my personal favourite boozer en route to St James's Park.

If you leave the train station and head straight up the alley past Gregg's you'll find it about 50 yards on your right.

And, on leaving, if you keep going up that alley and follow the pedestrian route across the road, you'll reach the stadium in five minutes.

Rafferty's is divided into two rooms. The one on the left (as you walk in) is a standing-room-only room on matchdays and the one on the right has more seating.

There are TVs dotted about the place, bar service is fast and prices are low. It's a home fans' pub, but you won't get any trouble if you behave.

If you're coming by car and you park at the Life Centre multi-storey car park, a decent place to stop off for a pint on the way to the ground is Twist Bar in Times Square.

It's supposed to be a gay pub, as is the Baron and Baroness next door (though that's closed on Wednesdays) but you wouldn't notice that unless you already knew.

It serves good food and is pretty spacious, so it's a good place to relax if you have half an hour before the game.

Walking up towards the ground from Times Square, you'll pass the Dog and Parrot and At Bar One.

They both offer cheap pints and good food, but are far enough away from the matchday crowds to be served fast.

If you really are pushed for time, you could call into The Strawberry (pictured above). which is right opposite the stadium's South Stand (though the United end is at the far end of the stadium).

It's strictly a home fans' pub and is rammed on match day, but it offers a wide selection of lager at a decent price.

Budget - £15 pp pn
Roselodge House (pictured left), in Benwell Lane, Benwell, is a former church offering comfy accommodation.

It is two miles from the ground (£5 in a taxi) and offers rooms for £15 per person per night, based on two people sharing a twin room. It's got a living room, parking spaces and is open 24 hours. Book here.

Value £25.50pp pn.
The Jurys Inn and the Holiday Inn are both sold out on the night of the game, so try the Travelodge Gateshead in Forster Street, which is three miles from the ground – about £8 in a taxi. It will cost £51 for a twin room, so that's £25.50 each. Book here.

Luxury - £101 pp pn
If you want to round off a good night on the town in style, head to the four-star Hilton Newcastle Gateshead (pictured right) in Bottle Bank, Gateshead, and get a twin executive room.

The hotel offers a whole host of mod cons including a gym and a heated indoor swimming pool. Make sure you book through Expedia, else you'll pay £20 more.

Fulham cup applications close

Reds wanting to go to next Saturday's FA Cup match against Fulham at Craven Cottage had until 8am today to apply for tickets.

Applications can find out if they have got tickets by calling 0161 868 8000 from 9am tomorrow.
The two teams meet in the league at the same ground two weeks later. Applications for that match had to be in by 9am today.

Anyone who applied can find out if they have got a ticket by calling 0161 868 8000 from 9am on Wednesday.

United are running coaches to both games, with places costing £31 per person on both dates. Book here.

Thursday, February 26

Wembley travel and drinking guide

Carling Cup Final
Wembley Stadium, London
Sunday March 1, kick off 15:00

NOTE: The tie must be decided on the day, so there's a chance it could go to extra time and penalties, so the latest fans will leave the ground is roughly 18:00.

Out of a capacity of 90,000, United have got 31,748 tickets at the east end of the stadium, priced at £80, £66, £52 and £38 for adults and half those prices for under 16s and over 65s.

All tickets have been sold and have been posted out. However, there are three ways you could still get one.
Season ticket holders who have been to all seven home cup games this season and are searching for a ticket should check with the United ticket office on 0161 868 8000 up until 5pm on Friday to see if there have been any returns.

United are offering a 'hospitality package' priced at £449 plus VAT, which gets you a match ticket, a first-class train ticket from Manchester Piccadilly to Wembley, a programme and a four-course meal on the train.

To book call the club's hospitality sales team on 0161 868 8000 (select option 2 then option 3) or email

Internet 'agents' World Ticket Shop, and other touts, are selling United end tickets for £310.50 each.

The match will be shown live on Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 1 HD, with the show starting at 14:30 and is due to finish at 17:30, extra time and penalties pending.


Car - £60
If you're using a satnav or a routeplanner, use the postcode HA9 0WS for Wembley Stadium.

The journey takes three-and-a-half hours and costs about £30 each way petrol (add on £4 if you plan on taking the M6 Toll road.
The basic route is: M6, M42, M1, North Circular Road, Brent and Wembley. Brent Council have said there are major roadworks taking place near the ground at the moment so expect long traffic queues.

Parking - free
There are three options

Pay £25 and park on an official Wembley Stadium car park. Book here

Pay £5 and book a parking spot at Ickenham Tube Stop and get the Metropolitan Line nine stops east to Wembley Park. Buy a one-day Travel Card for £7.50 (two singles will cost £8).
If you've got the time, you can easily find a free parking spot within five minutes' walk of Ickenham Tube Stop.
Train - £65
With only three days to go before the final, there are no saver tickets left so the cheapest ticket you can get is a standard-class off-peak return ticket for £65. You can buy it on the day.
Manchester to Wembley Stadium

Option 1 – journey time 3:11
Leave Manchester Piccadilly: 08:20
Arrive Watford Junction: 10:42
Leave: 11:05
Arrive Harrow and Wealdstone: 11:11
Leave: 11:22
Arrive Wembley Central: 11:31

Option 2 – journey time 3:42
Leave Manchester Piccadilly: 08:58
Arrive London Euston: 11:40
Leave: 12:17
Arrive North Wembley: 12.40

Option 3 – journey time 3:11
Leave Manchester Piccadilly: 09:20
Arrive Milton Keynes Central: 11:07
Leave: 11:25
Arrive Harrow and Wealdstone: 12:13
Leave: 12:22
Arrive Wembley Central: 12:31

Option 4 – journey time 2:27
Leave Manchester Piccadilly: 10:20
Arrive Watford Junction: 12:25
Leave: 12:35
Arrive Wembley Central: 12:47

Option 5 – journey time 2:53
Leave Manchester Piccadilly: 10:35
Arrive Milton Keynes Central: 12:20
Leave: 12:41
Arrive Wembley Central: 13:28

Option 6 – journey time 2:47
Leave Manchester Piccadilly: 11:15
Arrive Milton Keynes Central: 12:50
Leave: 13:11
Arrive Wembley Central: 14:02

Option 7 – journey time 3:05
Leave Manchester Piccadilly: 11:35
Arrive London Euston: 13:46
Leave: 14:17
Arrive North Wembley: 14.40

To the stadium from North Wembley station
Follow the pedestrian route under Empire Way and over Olympic Way to the front of the stadium. It takes 10 minutes

To the stadium from Wembley Central station
Turn right and walk along High Road past McDonalds and Burger King to the Wembley Triangle Junction and Clock Tower Island.

Turn Left into Wembley Hill Road, cross the road and follow the pedestrian route across the White Horse Bridge. It takes 15 minutes.

You can also reach Wembley from London Euston and Harrow and Wealdstone via the Tube. The price is included in your train ticket and your train ticket will work on the Tube turnstiles.
Wembley Stadium to Manchester

Option 1 – journey time 2:56
Leave North Wembley: 17:15
Arrive London Euston: 17:40
Leave: 17:55
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 20:09

Option 2 – journey time 3:08
Leave North Wembley: 17:43
Arrive London Euston: 18:08
Leave: 18:35
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 20:51

Option 3 – journey time 2:46
Leave Wembley Central: 17:44
Arrive Milton Keynes Centre: 18:30
Leave: 18:48
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 20:30

Option 4 – journey time 2:56
Leave North Wembley: 18:13
Arrive London Euston: 18:40
Leave: 18:55
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 21:09

Option 5 – journey time 3:09
Leave North Wembley: 18:43
Arrive London Euston: 19:08
Leave: 19:35
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 21:52

Option 6 – journey time 2:46
Leave Wembley Central: 18:44
Arrive Milton Keynes Centre: 19:30
Leave: 19:48
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 21:30

Option 7 – journey time 2:56
Leave North Wembley: 19:13
Arrive London Euston: 19:40
Leave: 19:55
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 22:09

Option 8 – journey time 3:17
Leave Wembley Central: 19:43
Arrive Harrow and Wealdstone: 19:51
Arrive London Euston: 20:11
Leave: 20:35
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 23:00

Option 9 – journey time 2:46
Leave Wembley Central: 19:44
Arrive Milton Keynes Centre: 20:30
Leave: 20:48
Arrive Manchester Piccadilly: 22:30

Coach - £34.50

United are running coaches to the game with places priced at £35 per person. Coaches leave the Old Trafford W2 car park at 8am. Book here.

National Express is running coaches to and from the game from Manchester Chorlton Street, with places costing £34.50 per person. Book in advance here.

It leaves Chorlton Street at 07:45, calls at Birmingham coach station at 09:45 and reaches Wembley at 12:30.

On the way back, it leaves the stadium at 17:30 (depending on when the match ends), calls at Birmingham at 20:30 and reaches Chorlton Street at 22:15.

If you're travelling to the game from elsewhere in the country, search National Express's network map for services from your area.

Megabus is running three coaches from Chorlton Street to London Victoria on the morning of the game, but there are too many problems with catching them to make it worthwhile.

First, there are engineering works taking place on the Tube station so, in order to reach Wembley, you will have to take two Tubes and a bus, taking almost two hours.

Second, there are only two coaches back, one at 18:30 and one at 23:00. The first is dodgy because you wouldn't make it back if the match goes beyond 90 minutes.

And, even if you did make it, it costs £24, putting the whole journey price up to about £40, which is more expensive than the club and National Express coaches.

Plane - £162.80
British Airways is offering Manchester to London Gatwick flights on Sunday for the above price, departing at 06:35 and heading back at 20:25, with each journey taking an hour.

If you want to leave after 06:35 though, you're looking at £170 each way. Find flights at Skyscanner

More information getting to Wembley is here.

The Torch at 1 Bridge Street, will welcome reds on Sunday. It has a got a good pre-match atmosphere and is only a 10-minute walk from the ground. Getting served quickly can be a bit of a pain though.

The Greyhound at 324 Harrow Road, is apparently a Spurs pub for the match but I can't see reds being turned away unless they are misbehaving.
It has a licence that allows it to open at 7am.
A special food menu will be on offer and you can get a pint of lager for £3.60 (Fosters, Carling) or £3.80 San Miguel.It’s a decent pub, with Sky, four pool tables (which will probably be covered up at some point), a big (ish) car park and a small porch area.

It's a 10-minute walk from Wembley Central and North Wembley station.

If you prefer something slightly quieter, head for the Windermere, in Windermere Avenue, outside South Kenton Tube Station.

It’s out of the way but the queue at the bar will be smaller and you can still make kick off if you leave 20 minutes before the game…and walk fast.

Another decent boozer is the Royal George Hotel right outside London Euston.

If you're going via Euston, it's a handy place to meet with mates pre-match and get in a couple of early pints before heading to the ground on the Tube.

Wednesday, February 25

Call for Carling Cup Final returns

United take on Spurs in the Carling Cup final this Sunday at Wembley and the reds' ticket office has a limited number of returned tickets available to season ticket holders and members.
Call the ticket office tomorrow from 9am on 0161 868 8000.
A full travel guide will be put up here tomorrow along with a guide to Newcastle.

Fulham see off Swans to

Fulham beat Swansea 2-1 last night in the FA Cup 5th round replay to set up a 6th round showdown with United at Craven Cottage on March 7, kick off 5.15pm.

United have been given approximately 3,800 tickets costing £30 for adults, £20 for over 65s and £10 for under 16s.

Box holders, executive members and season ticket holders can apply now until 8am on Friday.

Applicants can find out if they have got tickets on Saturday.

There will not be a neutral section for this game, as the seats usually given to that section will go to United.

Saturday, February 21

Fulham ticket details released

In the middle of a hectic schedule, United travel to Craven Cottage on Saturday March 21, kick off 3pm, to play Fulham in the Premier League.

Of course, depending on whether Fulham manage to despatch Swansea in Tuesday night's FA Cup 5th round replay, the reds could be playing them again at Craven Cottage on March 8.

For the league game, United have 2,931 tickets, priced at £47 adults, £34 for over 65s and £19 for under 16s.

Box holders, executive members and season ticket holders can apply online or by calling 0161 868 8000 from 8am on Monday until 8am on Friday.

Those who apply can find out if they have got tickets on March 4, at which point we'll publish a travel and drinking guide.
All tickets for Fulham's neutal section have sold out.
United are running coaches to the game, with places priced at £30 per person.

Friday, February 20

The price is right at Althams

United fans were given a boost yesterday when the pound improved on the markets, rising to equal e1.12.

It means those getting the 4,000-plus fans getting their money changed for Milan will have a few extra quid in their pocket.So where are the best places to get your euro? The following figures are based on exchanging £100 over the counter.

At Althams (branches in Bolton, Bury, Denton, Farnworth and Littleborough amongst others), £100 buys you e110

At Co-op Travel (branches in Corporation Street, Salford Quays, Failsworth, Droylsden, Stretford, Stockport, Middleton, Monton amongst others), £100.92 buys you e110.

At Thomas Cook (branches in Market Street, Fountain Street, Chorlton, Prestwich, Trafford Centre amongst others), £101.11 buts you e110.

At The Post Office (branches across Greater Manchester), £104.33 buys you e110

First Choice Holidays £100 e108.

At Travelex (at most airports), £100 buys you e109.25

At Lloys Bank (branches across Greater Manchester), £100 buys you e107.79

Thursday, February 19

To come tomorrow...

A guide to where to get your currency exchanged before Milan.

A travel guide for Wembley.

A travel guide for Newcastle

Wednesday, February 18

Saturday night trip south for reds

United will face either Swansea or Fulham away in the FA Cup 6th round on Saturday March 7 with a 5.15pm kick off, it has been confirmed.

Box, executive and season ticket holders can apply for tickets online or by calling 0161 868 8000 from 8am on February 28 for a 48-hour period.

Allocation and price details will be announced after Swansea play Fulham in the 5th round replay on Tuesday.

Ballot results will be published at 9am on February 28.

Neither Setanta or ITV have confirmed they will show the match in the UK, though Setanta will show it in the Republic of Ireland.

Get set for Italian cold snap

If you're currently packing your suitcase to travel to Milan next week, the good news is that it is getting warmer in northern Italy.

But the bad news is minimum temperatures will only climb from -3c to 1c.

That said, we can expect plenty of fairly warm sunshine on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Full details are below.
United sent out tickets for the match yesterday and should arrive with all successful applicants today.

High of 14 c and 58f and low of -2c and 28f
Sunny and cloudy

High 14c and 58f and low of 0c and 33f
Sunny and cloudy

High 14c and 58f and low of 1c and 35f
Sunny and cloudy

High 11c of 52f and low of 1c and 35f
Bright sunshine

High 8c of 47f and low of 1c and 35f
Bright sunshine

Monday, February 16

Milan trip guide

Inter Milan
San Siro stadium, Milan
Tuesday February 24, kick off 20:45 local time
UEFA Champions League last 16 stage, first leg

Before you go


Italy uses the euro.

One euros is currently worth £1.08 (so that's e1 worth 92p) with the Post Office. Later on in the week, we'll publish a list of which companies offer the best conversion rates.

Travel insurance

Use Cheap Travel Insurance and you can get single-trip policies for £5.98.

From and to the airports

A few groups are travelling via Turin, Zurich, Geneva and other airports, but seeing as though they will mostly be getting trains from those respective cities into Milan, I have listed only the Milan airports.

This airport is 45 miles north east of Milan.
There are three ways of reaching Milan from here.
Coach - e16

It leaves from outside the airport and drops you outside Milano Central train station.

The timetable both ways is here, but generally, coaches arrive and leave in sync with all flights.
It costs e10 one way and e16 return. You must buy your tickets from the Terravision rep by the coach, rather than the driver.

Bus/train - e19.70
I'm not sure why you would want to do this, as it takes longer and costs a bit more than the coach.

But you can get a bus from outside the airport to Bergamo town (it costs e1.70 one way - though it's an easy jib if you get on at the back - and they leave every 20 minutes), walk across the road to the train station and get the train to Milan.

The train takes 55 minutes and costs about e18. You can search for train times here.

Taxi - e75

There are plenty outside the airport. The journey takes about an hour by road and would cost about e75.

Linate Airport

This airport is four miles east of Milan.
There are three ways of reaching Milan from here.

Coach - e5

It leaves from outside the airport and drops you outside Milano Central train station. It leaves and arrives in sync with flights and takes about half an hour.

Bus - e2.50

The number 73 service runs from outside the airport to San Babila Metro station, which is on the red line and one stop from the central Duomo station.

The 73 runs every half hour between 06:05 and 11:45. The journey takes 20 minutes and costs e2.50 each way. Buy your ticket on the bus.

Taxi - e15

There is a cab rank outside the airport.The journey will take about half an hour by road depending on traffic and costs about e15.

This airport is 30 miles north west of Milan.
There are three ways of reaching Milan from here.

Bus - e2.60

There is a shuttle service that leaves from outside the airport to Milano Centrale Train Station, costing e1.30 each way. The first bus runs at 05:54 and the last is at 23:24.

Train - e14.50

The Malpensa Express takes 40 minutes to reach Milan Cadorna Train Station and costs e9 one way or e14.50 for a return. The service runs from 06:45am to 21.45

Taxi - e65

There is a taxi rank at the arrivals entrance. Journey time to Milan is about 50 minutes depending on traffic and you're looking at a fare of e65.
Once you're there...

First thing is first, you'll need to get to know the Milan Metro.

It's one of the easiest European metros to figure out, but beware - locals tend to be pretty rude on the service in that they won't think twice about barging you out of the way or stealing the last seat whether you've got 10 suitcases or not.

Also, the carriages always tend to judder just before the trains stop, so hold on tight.

Print out this map.
If you're only spending a day or two in Milan, you should only need the Red and Yellow lines.

Milano Central Train Station is on the Yellow Line and the stadium is nearest Lotto Fiera 2 on the Red Line. The other central area of note is Duomo, which has its own station, also on the Yellow Line.

Here are the fares:
Single ticket: e11
One-day pass: e3
Two-day pass: e5.50
Four-journey pass: e4
Ten-journey pass: 9.20

Places to visit/drink
It's no exaggeration to say that Milan is overated when it comes to culture and things to do, especially if you're only visiting for a short time.

The best thing to see is the Duomo Milano cathedral. To get there from Milano Centrale, take the Metro four stops south on the Yellow Line.
You'll emerge with the cathedral on your left and the centrepiece Piazza Del Duomo square right in front of you, a decent shopping arcade behind you and some cracking bars to the right of you.

The cathedral is free to go inside (they won't let you in with legs showing though) but you have to pay about e10 if you want to go to the top to see the view overlooking Milan.
The official AC Milan/Inter Milan club shop is immediately behind the Duomo.
Facing the Duomo is a McDonalds and bars including Nepentha, at Piazza Diaz Armando and Nuovo Bar Delle Ore Di Pronzato Valter Renato. In past visits to Milan, reds have congregated here en masse.

Apart from that, the only real culturally significant attraction is the Last Supper painting (pictured right) by Leonardo da Vinci, which is on show at the Santa Maria delle Grazie church.

The easiest way to reach it is to take the Red Line west (in the direction of the stadium) and get off at Conciliazione stop.

While the area around the church is good to explore with there being so many mysterious back alleys and shops, it is pretty much the working part of town, so it can get a bit annoying with urban noise.

Enter to the church costs e6.50 though it is free for over 65s and under 16s. Regardless of the cost though, you must book your ticket at least three days in advance.

Other city centre pubs of note

Pogue Mahone's Irish Pub, at 1 via Samini, near the Porta Romana Metro Station on the Yellow Line will be open from 6pm to 2am the day before the game and 10am until 2am (with a two-hour break at 4pm) for the rest of the week.

It serves Fosters, Guinness, Newcastle Blue Star and McEwans amongst other tipples.

Food wise, there's a decent menu and the fry up ~(puctured), costing e10, is the highlight.
The Madrigal Irish Pub, at 280 Via Giuseppe Rovani, which is to the north of the centre close to the Sesto S.Giovanni Train Station.

It's rated very highly by th locals and is a decent place to stop off at if you're here for a few days, rather than just on the day of the game, as it isn't on the way to the ground.
And that, folks, is about it.

On to the game...
Take the Metro fom Milano Centrale six stops south on the Green Line get off at Cadorna, then take the Red Line five stops west (towards Molino Dorino) to Lotto Fiera 2.
When you leave the Metro, you're a 15-minute walk from the ground, though you don't need directions - just follow the crowd and the souvenir stalls.

The only problem is that there's absolutely nothing remotely resembling a bar next to the stadium, so you're better off sticking near to the Lotto Metro stop.

One hidden beauty lies in the opposition direction from the ground, but not too far away and it should be quiet enough to guarantee you three or four trips to the bar before heading off to the match.

It's called the Black Bull. From Lotto, follow the main road (Viale Enrico Elia) up for about five minutes until you come to Viale Certosa.
Turn left and you'll find the pub on the right-hand side of the road. It's small but welcoming and definitely red friendly.

The only other option is Mulligan's Irish Pub (pictured right), at 28 via Giussepe Govone, but it's a bit of a walk, so a taxi is probably the best bet.

The pub is run by Italians so it's not 'authentic Irish', but it's still a pretty decent place for a pre-match sing-song and its variety of bottled lagers is impressive. than that, it really is slim pickings for drinking by the ground.

A lot of people will be sticking to hotel bars and meeting friends there.

The stadium
The ground holds 80,074 and United have been given 4,393 tickets, priced at £38 each.

All tickets are sold out for both the home end and the away section, though spare tickets are floating about internet forums.

You must take photo ID - preferably your passport - to the game with you, else you will not be allowed into the stadium.

It is expected that United fans will be kept behind for 15 to 30 minutes after the game.

Formal stuff

Using your mobile in Italy

To call English mobiles from your mobile delete the 0 and put 44 in its place. For example: 0787 777 777 becomes 4478 777 777.

To call Italian numbers from your mobile, put 39 before the local part of the number, which begins 02.

Emergency police: 112
Non-emergency English-speaking police: 02 863 701.
Hospital: 02 644 42496. The Ospedale Niguarda hospital is at Piazza Ospedale Maggiore 3, 20162.
Money: You can draw money out at ATMs all over town. A £2 withdrawal fee will apply in most cases.
The central tourist information office: At Marconi 1, on the corner of the Piazza Duomo. It's open frm Monday to Fri 08:45 to 13:00 and 14:00 to 17:45 and on Saturday and Sunday from 09:00 to 13:00 and 14:00 to 16:45.
The second tourist office: At Milano Centrale Train Station on the first floor near the Gran Bar.
It's open from Monday to Saturday from 08:00 to 19:00 and Sunday from 09:00 to 12:30 and 13:30 to 18:00.
Free internet access: Visit the two tourist centres above or any major hotel.
The British Consulate General: At 7 via S. Paola, 20121. Telephone 0272 3001 during office hours or in an emergency out of hours 335 7516825.
It is open from Monday to Friday from 09:15 to 12:15 and from 14:15 to 15:45.

If you lose your passport, report it to the police and you should only need the consulate in very exceptional circumstances, like if you have been seriously injured or arrested.
The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office has published advice for United fans going to Milan, but it's not particularly useful. Here it is.