1: Old Trafford
The 76,000 seater stadium is the hub of the empire. On non match days the
museum, tour and Megastore attract thousands of tourists every week.
On match day, souvenir and fast food stalls line the roads around as well as
fanzine sellers. A good place to spot United heroes past and present is the
players car park at the South East corner. You can see the United stars array of
frighteningly expensive cars and you'll see the stars arrive if you're there early
enough (about 3-4 hours before KO.
In 1993 the Warwick Road North passing Old Trafford was officially renamed Sir
Matt Busby Way in honour of the great man. Favourite haunts of the fans on
match day are the nearby pubs, The Trafford, The Bishops Blaize (Wetherspoons)
and Samuel Platts. Lou Macari's chip shop is also round the corner and the
Classic sports shop has memorabilia. United also have the Red Cinema across
the canal in Salford Quays which shows important away games on the big
2: Carrington Training Centre
United's state of the art training facility six miles west from Old Trafford, deep in
the countryside of Manchester's suburbs. The site covers 70 acres and boasts 14
pitches of varying size. Inside the complex, there is training and rehabilitation
areas, physiotherapy, massage rooms and remedial and hydrotherapy pools.
Its not called fortress Carrington for nothing, fans can hang outside the entrance
in the hope of a player stopping to sign autographs but most zoom by in their
cars. Players won't autograph merchandise in case you sell it on E-bay and just
be careful you don't confuse it with another Carrington sports centre, Manchester
City have their training facility close nearby.
3: The Cliff
The Cliff used to be Manchester United's main training and practice grounds
facilities in Salford on the banks of the River Irwell. It has an outdoor training
pitch, indoor pitch, Gym, training area, sports hall and extensive injury treatment
Carrington replaced it in 1999 but the Cliff is still used for junior, academy and
Manchester United Women's games. United's "Football in the Community" project
HQ is at the Cliff, aimed to give something back to the local people by involving
schools and local children. Recently the England national team have used it for
training sessions when Old Trafford hosts internationals.