Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Time to Celebrate

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Time to Celebrate

Article excerpt

They came, they saw - and they saluted the conquerors.

Teesside turned out in style to celebrate Boro's glorious Carling Cup win on an emotional afternoon throughout the streets of Middlesbrough.

An estimated 100,000 fans were there with painted faces, bedecked in red and white from head to foot, to see Boro parade the hallowed cup in an open topped bus.

The weather was not too friendly, with occasional drizzle blown by a cold wind, but it didn't matter to the fans.

They were hanging from the lamp-posts, leaning out of windows and singing and dancing on top of the bus shelters.

The noise was absolutely deafening at times, particularly where the crowd was at its thickest on the Albert Park corner and the junction of Borough Road and Linthorpe Road.

Several thousand fans also followed the bus all the way to the Riverside Stadium, where it was clear that several players were visibly touched by such a terrific welcome.

Red flags were flying everywhere and the fans eagerly absorbed every word from Steve McClaren and his victorious squad.

McClaren said: "I am speaking for all the players and the staff when I say that we could not believe the reception we received from the fans.

"Everybody has been fantastic and Sunday was definitely a day for the fans.

"If we had any doubts exactly what winning the cup means to the fans then now we know.

"They've waited 128 years for this. Now we can forget about going to other clubs and hearing their fans chanting that we have never won anything.

"It wouldn't have been possible without the remarkable contribution of the players at the Millennium Stadium.

"But then nor would it have been possible without the contribution of the supporters. They have been absolutely magnificent.

"Having witnessed these scenes on Sunday I am sure I am speaking for everybody when I say that we want to win another trophy as quickly as possible.

"If we could make the same trip in the same bus next season, then nobody would be more delighted than me. It would be another marvellous occasion for everybody."

One of the best received speeches came from goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer, who has at least tasted the sweet success of winning a trophy after seven years with the club. …

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