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Last Updated: Saturday, 13 May 2006, 16:42 GMT 17:42 UK
FA Cup duties for Prince William
Prince William
It was the prince's first duty as the new president of the FA
Prince William was in Cardiff on Saturday to present the FA Cup on his first day as the new president of The Football Association.

The last FA Cup final at the Millennium Stadium was the prince's first.

He also presented the FA Cup player of the round awards to players from teams from every round of the competition.

Liverpool won the cup on penalties after an exciting match with West Ham finished 3-3 after extra time.

Australian cricket legend Shane Warne delivered the match ball, ahead of the 1500 BST kick off.

The spin bowler landed on the Cardiff Bay Barrage by helicopter before racing up the River Taff by boat, stopping at a water bus stop near the stadium.

Warne said he was looking forward to the game, before heading towards the stadium on foot, shaking the hands of fans who spotted him.

'Underdogs'

Liverpool played - and won - in the first final to be held in Cardiff in 2001, while "underdogs" West Ham last appeared in an FA Cup Final in 1980.

A Liverpool fan outside the stadium

Slightly overcast weather failed to subdue fans who turned out early to soak up the atmosphere.

West Ham fan Mike Harris, 43, made a family day of it, arriving with daughter Chantelle, aged seven, and six-year-old son Jordan.

Social worker Mr Harris, from Basildon in Essex praised the "friendly atmosphere".

He has "every hope" for his team, adding: "I was at the last Cup Final 26 years ago."

IT manager Julie Compton, 39, arrived with partner Andrew Blunt, 41, and his 12-year-old son Chris, from Watford.

The West Ham supporters set off just after 0600 BST to beat the traffic, saying they had been unable to find accommodation in Cardiff.

Prince William meets the teams at the Millennium Stadium
Prince Williams meets the teams before kick-off

Chris Blunt said it was the biggest game he had ever been to, "although every game is a big game".

He said that despite his team being "underdogs" he was "looking forward to it".

His father added: "Anything can happen. West Ham are a good side."

Around 1,000 tickets to this year's big game were intercepted.

Stadium officials would not issue duplicates because of safety concerns, but Liverpool opted to use tickets held back for a ballot of fan club members to replace them.

Lifelong Liverpool fan Mike Oldaker, from Launceston in Cornwall, arrived ahead of the game with 15-year-old son Nick.

He said the missing tickets for the match "should have been replaced".


SEE ALSO
Liverpool 3-3 West Ham (aet)
13 May 06 |  FA Cup
How the FA Cup final unfolded
13 May 06 |  FA Cup
Cup ticket theft probe man bailed
12 May 06 |  Merseyside
Web sale for cup final hotel bed
04 May 06 |  South East Wales
Losses for Wembley firm hit 106m
23 Feb 06 |  Business
Goodway could become a vicar
18 Jun 04 |  Wales

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