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Last Updated: Monday, 9 May, 2005, 13:05 GMT 14:05 UK
Curtis ambivalent at Vetch exit
The Vetch Field, Swansea
Swansea legend Alan Curtis admits the club's departure from the Vetch Field will leave him with mixed emotions.

"It will be a harrowing time for the fans and for me personally, but the new stadium excites everyone," said Curtis.

"It won't hit me until I walk out with the gates locked for the final time a few weeks after the last fixture. I'm not relishing that."

Wednesday's FAW Premier Cup final between Swansea and Wrexham was the last game played at the ground.

The 93-year-old Vetch will be demolished, with Swansea moving to their new stadium at Morfa next season.

Curtis' connection to the old ground runs deep, having started his playing career there as a 17-year-old.

Alan Curtis
The Vetch may look like a tired, jaded old ground, but the place comes alive on match days and flowers with a life of its own
Alan Curtis
The former Wales centre forward returned to the club at the end of his playing career, and has since been community officer, youth team coach, assistant manager, caretaker manager and head of youth at the Vetch, his current role.

"I've spent most of my adult working life associated with the ground," he told BBC Sport Wales.

"My father brought me down here for the first time for a trial match in 1971, a Sunday morning - and, unusually for Swansea, a sunny day!

"Since then it's been like I've been tied to the club by an elastic band, they've tried to get rid of me but I keep coming back!

"The Vetch may look like a tired, jaded old ground, but the place comes alive on match days and flowers with a life of its own.

"After promotion the club can move on quickly in the next few years, perhaps compete at Championship level where we feel Swansea belong.

"The new stadium is absolutely magnificent, I can only compare it to a mini Millennium Stadium.

"You have a fantastic view from every vantage point, the facilities are great and the club can generate hospitality money at regular intervals.

"Whatever the sadness at leaving the Vetch and all its memories, this is the dawning of a new era."





SEE ALSO
Swansea 1-0 Shrewsbury
30 Apr 05 |  League Two


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