Olympique de Marseille
Stade de Veledrome
UEFA Champions League round of 16
Wednesday, February 23, kick off 20:45 local time
United have got 3,000 tickets – 2,800 in the away end in one corner of the stadium.
They cost £60, though 200 of them are on the halfway line in a VIP section which is essentially in the home end. They cost £102.
United have posted vouchers to everyone who has got a ticket and filled in a travel report.
People must then exchange their voucher for a match ticket in Marseille.
The ticket collection point is:
Societe Nautique de Marseille
Quai de Rive-Neuve
Basically, it’s in the Vieux Port area of town a few doors down from Pub O’Malley (see pub guide below). It’s in a very easy to find location, near to Vieux Port Metro station.
Tickets can only be collected by the person whose name the ticket is in, by proof of a driving licence or a passport.
It’s likely to be about 13C/55F in the day time before dropping to about 9C/48F in the evening. Prepare for rain, though, as there’s no room on the away end.
The two-star Hotel Coloka at 27 Rue Levat is a six-room hotel with twin rooms at £67.46 per night.
It’s a 10-minute walk to St Charles and a five-minute walk to the nearest Metro Station Desiree Clary.
You can keep your beers in a fridge in your room and pay a bit extra for breakfast each morning. Rooms are comfy, quiet, but otherwise nothing to write home about.
If you’re willing to pay a bit more for a good location a brief walk away from the best bars, try the four-star Best Western La Joilette at 49 Avenue Robert Schuman.
At £38 per person per night, it’s a steal. All 32 rooms are soundproof, have air conditioning, a flatscreen TV and even an iPod docking station.
There’s also a sauna and a gym. Vieux Port is a five-minute walk away and the nearest Metro station, Joilette is a few doors away.
The only downside is that this hotel is so popular, very few rooms are left for matchnight and you can’t get refunds at this stage.
If you need something cheaper, you could try a hostel.
At the moment, Marseille has three hostels with rooms. One is miles out of town and so isn’t worth it, another is asking £100 a room, which leaves the London Connection Hostel at 45 Rue de Flegier (on the right of the photograph).
If we’re honest, the reviews are awful. People say the rooms are small and smelly, but on the other hand, the hotel has just been renovated so maybe it’s improved.
The location is brilliant for those travelling to Marseille by train/Eurostar as it’s a two-minute walk to Saint-Charles Train Station. It costs £18.98 per person per night in an 11-bed dorm. Book via hostelbookers.com, paying just a five-per-cent deposit in advance.
The airport has two terminals. Terminal 1 is for international flights.
In the arrivials hall, you can hire cars from Avis, Budget, National, Europcar, Hertz or Sixt.
There’s also a cash machine and a money exchange facility.
There are four ways of reaching Marseille
- Car hire (see above). Follow the A7 and then the A55 and then the A50 into the city. It will take about 20 minutes depending on traffic.
- Taxi. You can get a taxi from outside the arrivals hall. It will cost £40 (e46) from 07:00 to 19:00 and £48 (e57) at all other times. Book your taxi in advance here
Buses leave the airport every 20 minutes between 05:10 and 00:10.
Going the other way, every 20 minutes between 04:30 and 23:30. It costs £7.26 one way (e8.50)
-Train. From outside the arrivals hall, take a shuttle bus from quay 2 (taking five minutes) to the airport train station which is called Vitrolles Aeroport station. I
t’s a bit of a strange system. Trains seem to depart in sync with flight landing times.
The journey to Marseille Saint-Charles is 17 minutes, but make sure you check the timetable here before your flight if you really want to get the train. It costs £4.01 one way (e4.70)
Here is the timetable.
There are two main ‘centres’ in Marseille. The first is Saint-Charles Train Station (their version of Piccadilly). The second is Vieux Port, which is the harbour area (their version of errr…Deansgate Locks?)
Both have Metro Stations and there is only one stop between them.
Here is a map
There are two lines: M1, which is coded blue and M2 which is coded red.
Services run every five minutes from 05:00 to 21:30 on weekdays and until 00:30 on weekends (so you will have to find another way back into town/to your hotel after the match).
A single journey ticket costs e1.70. A day ticket costs e4.60. A five-journey ticket, which also includes buses, costs e6.30 and a 10-journey ticket including buses costs e12.60.
Things to see and do
Here is a top 10 guide to Marseille attractions
United fans will be in the Zone Visiteurs section in the corner of two stands. You can see it in the video below on 31 seconds in the bottom right.
To get there from Vieux Port, Saint-Charles or anywhere else in the city centre, take a taxi which will take about 10 minutes and cost about e10.
You can take the Metro there, but you can’t take it back as it only runs until 21:30 on weekdays.
You can get off at either Rond-Point de Prado (not recommended as it is the stop all the home fans get off at) or Saint Marguente Dromel.
That is the better option as it is only a five-minute walk to the away end, which is the closest stand to it.
Come out of the station and walk to the left along Boulevard Schloesing. You’ll pass a Total Garage and a McDonald’s and take the next left and then the next right. Walk along for a little while and you’ll find the entrance to the away end.
Here is a stadium plan
After the game, if you’re not on one of the organised tours and need to get back into town, it’s best to jump in a taxi.
First, there is Pub O’Malley at 9 Quai Rive Nueve in the Vieux Port area.
Vieux Port is basically a horseshoe-shaped road that surrounded Marseille harbour on three sides.
It is packed with hotels, restaurants and bars like O’Malley’s.
The pub is open from 15:00 to 02:00 on Mondays and Tuesdays and 15:00 to 03:00 on Wednesdays and Thursdays.
There’s usually live music on Wednesday nights, so expect it to be quite a lively atmosphere after the match.
There are 40 beers to choose from and a pint will cost you roughly e5-6.50
It has two big screens and will be showing one of the Champions League matches on Tuesday night.
And it’s the perfect meeting point for a pub crawl as there are loads of other bars nearby.
To find the pub, get off at Vieux Port Metro station and, facing the harbour, turn left and follow Vieux Port Road round until you see it on your left.
Locals and expats alive rate it as the best Irish bar in town.
The prices are similar, but there’s more room and the pub does happy hour on Wednesday nights (though it probably won’t be on when United are in town).
It too is open from mid-afternoon until the early hours on most days of the week.
While the other two pubs will probably be best for Tuesday night, O’Brady’s is by far the best bet for the afternoon of the match as it’s much nearer the stadium.
The staff show all United games and, again, the Tuesday’s night Champions League action will be shown.
The pub sells Guiness for e6, Kilkenny, Carlng, Carlsberg, Welscotch, Ruby, Strongbow and Hogaarden for e6.50 and an unbranded lager for e5.
Here is the food menu
This pub also shows live football on the big screen.
To find it, take the Metro to Rond-Point du Prado and come out of the station.
As you’re standard towards the entrance of the park, turn to your right and head down Boulevard Michelet past the stadium, over the river and then turn right onto Avenue Gue de Maupassant. The pub is at the T junction ahead.
Althans is currently doing the best rate on euros, followed by the Post Office. Let us know what deal you’re getting on euros at the moment and where from by emailing at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Get travel insurance before you go
- in an emergency requiring police, fire or ambulance, dial 112
- ask your hotel for a card, so you can always give it to a taxi driver when you need to get back after a few pints
- when calling the UK from France, add on 0044 or +44 and take off the first 0 of the number, so calling 0712345, it would be 0044712345 or +44712345
- If you lose your passport or it has been stolen, inform the British Consulate at 24 Avenue de Prado. Phone 0033 4 911 57210. It’s open on weekdays from 09:00 to 12:00 and then 14:00 to 17:00
- get free city maps, friendly help or even a free hotel booking service at the tourist information centre at 4 La Canebière. There’s a smaller centre at Vieux-Port Station
- a 24-hour chemist is at Brachet Bel, 29 rue Longue des Campucins
- Get internet access at Infocafe at 1 Quai de Rive, Neuve or the Magic Café at 20 rue Docteur Escat for e6 an hour