With Palace’s home game against Valencia only a week away, players have been reminiscing about their experiences of going to their first home game as a fan, and memories of visiting stadiums before eventually taking to the field themselves.
Born and raised in East London, James Tomkins remembers watching the likes of Harry Redknapp and Rio Ferdinand at Upton Park, and says going to watch a live game as a young fan is an experience which stays with you forever.
“It seems a long time ago now but it was great, obviously I was a local lad watching my local team and it was good to see them play and that stays with you.”
Still only seventeen years-old, Luke Dreher was a season ticket holder with his local team and the young midfielder fondly recalls watching one player who is now one of his club teammates.
“I started going to Upton Park with my dad when I was six years-old and watching the likes of James Tomkins! Going to one of these big football matches with all the crowd there and taking in the atmosphere it’s quite surreal when you’re that young and it’s a great experience.”
Go to eagles.cpfc.co.uk
to watch Tomkins and Dreher meet young fans at the club's Foundation Holiday Course programme.
Palace are offering free admission to under 12s when accompanied by a paying adult to watch Palace take on Valencia on Saturday 6th August.
Prior to kick-off at 3pm, there will be entertainment and activities for younger fans in the club's Fan Zone as well as competitions and free giveaways.