Take That fan travels 19 hours from Italy for St Mary's

Take That fan travels 19 hours from Italy for St Mary's gig

28-year-old Antonio Rotunno from Bari made the near day-long trip with his friends Nunzia, Floriana, Irene, Gloria, and Claudia – who are all huge Take That fans.

They left home at 5am on Thursday, May 30, before arriving in Southampton at midnight.

The first thing the group did upon arrival was to visit the stadium, before bedding down in an apartment within walking distance.

READ MORE: Traffic warning for Southampton ahead of Take That gig

However, at 5am on Friday morning – still over 24 hours before the concert is due to get underway – the music lovers were back outside the home of Southampton Football Club, this time to camp outside St Mary’s, a stone’s throw away from the Ted Bates statue, to ensure they are among the first fans onto the pitch when doors open at 5pm tomorrow, having bought standing tickets.

“When you want a good spot for your favourite band you have to go for it and earn it,” said Antonio.

“This is my tenth time seeing Take That, it’s not even our first show in Southampton as we came here five years ago in 2019 for the Odyssey tour, we’ve grown fond of this place.

Daily Echo:

“It’s the first time seeing them on the This Life tour and we’ll be seeing them again later in the year as they’re coming to our home town in Italy for the first time, we can’t wait.”

READ MORE: Take That, St Mary’s: Full guide to 2024 Southampton concert

He added: “Every time we see them it feels like the first time, so the excitement levels are very high.”

Now consisting of three members – Gary Barlow, Mark Owen, and Howard Donald – Antonio’s favourite song is The Flood, the band’s number one single from when they reunited as a five-piece in 2010, alongside Robbie Williams and Jason Orange.

Antonio said: “One of my favourite songs is The Flood but it’s too hard to pick – it’s very special as it’s when Robbie re-joined the band and the five of them were together again – so the song is very meaningful, and it was also the first time I saw them as a five-piece.

“My friends have been fans since the 1990s and it was their lifetime dream to see them as a five-piece, it came true eventually!”

Asked how he would pass the time outside the stadium leading up to the concert, Antonio commented: “We can play games and also make friends, which is probably the most important thing.”

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