The fixture list for Brighton and Hove Albion’s first season at the new Falmer stadium may not be out yet – but the first match will be on Saturday 9 July.
It’s not a friendly. It’s a more intimate match than that, as that’s the date when two Albion fans will kick off their marriage – at 3 o’clock, of course.
Kev Attwood, 49, and Sue King, 46, will be the first couple to wed at the Amex Community Stadium.
Mr Attwood, a fan since the age of 10, said: “We’ll be getting married in a room overlooking the pitch.
“It’s on a Saturday at 3 o’clock.
“We’re holding our reception in another room there – they’ve got loads of rooms you can hire out.
“We hope to have our wedding photos on the pitch or beside the pitch.
“The club and Martin Perry (the chief executive) have been fantastic.”
Although brides traditionally where something blue, Miss King will resist the temptation to wear a wedding dress in Albion colours, sticking with the more traditional ivory.
But, Mr Attwood said: “The wedding itself will be very blue and white.
“All the buttonholes, table decorations and bouquets will be blue and white.
“The club have said they’ll do white tablecloths with blue napkins.
“Even the bridesmaids will have blue dresses.
“And we’ve got a friend who’s going to be doing loads of little cup cakes with seagulls.”
As a civil ceremony, the “match” official will be a registrar rather than a man in black with a dog collar – or a whistle.
Mr Attwood, a heating engineer who grew up in Woodingdean, said that the couple originally asked if they could wed at Withdean Stadium.
He said: “I don’t think they had a licence there so we put it off for a few years”
With the opening of the new stadium imminent, it looked well worth moving the goalposts.
Mind you, said Mr Attwood, of Old Fort Road, Shoreham, the new stadium has yet to be granted a licence to hold weddings.
He is confident though that, when it comes to the venue, there won’t need to be a late substitution.
He said that his fiancée – a barmaid in Shoreham – was also an Albion fan and particularly liked home games because of the atmosphere.
But, he added, the couple were planning a relaxing honeymoon away from it all.
“It’ll be a sport-free honeymoon,” he said.
The couple’s wedding is the first of four already booked for the new stadium.
The first football match is likely to be the Sussex Senior Cup Final a week later on Saturday 16 July.
And in August Albion are likely to open the new season – hopefully newly promoted to the Championship – with a home game.
But first Kev Attwood and Sue King will mark a special debut at the stadium as they celebrate their very own match of the day.
Pictures by Diensen Pamben
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