PICTURES

The day The Straits Times gave me front row seats to watch FC Barcelona play Real Madrid

The reader won VIP tickets to catch Lionel Messi play at Camp Nou, and got an autograph from Jordi Alba

I am still in awe of my amazing trip to Barcelona, to watch Barcelona play Real Madrid. The Straits Times and Samsung flew me up on Singapore Airlines and I got to stay in a five-star hotel. I also had a VIP gold ticket for the match at Camp Nou.

They also arranged for a chauffeur to come and pick the other winner and myself up from the hotel to Camp Nou, and back again after the match. My VIP seat was also the best seat in Camp Nou as it was at the first row, and just beside the FC Barcelona team. I could catch every detail of the players and the match from my seat.

Upon my arrival in Barcelona on Thursday, a chauffeur picked us from the airport. He dropped me off at the five-star Hotel Majestic, where I checked in to a very clean and spacious room. I didn't realise that at this hotel, rooms are cleaned twice a day.

After that, we headed to Camp Nou for a visit to the museum. To be standing at the stadium, which can fit close to 100,000 people, is the fulfillment of one of my biggest dreams. On the match day on Saturday, the chauffeur came by and drove us to Camp Nou and unlike my first visit, I was in awe of the number of Barcelona supporters outside the stadium.

Just being among the thousands of supporters at Camp Nou, with the excitement in the air, was a very different feeling. Of course, I can only compare it to my first concert at the Singapore Indoor Stadium watching The Script.

It was only upon entering the stadium that I realised that The Straits Times and Samsung gave me a VIP seat at Camp Nou, which was more than I had expected. There I was, seated at the first row and directly in front of the pitch. From my chair, I could catch everything happening on the field, and see every detail on all the players, from their warm up at the start, to seeing them leave at the end of the match.

But my best moment of the night, of which there were many, was not in watching the game. I was lucky to be able to spot Barcelona and Spain's national team player, Jordi Alba, who was seated just a few seats away from me. I managed to bring up enough courage to approach him for an autograph, which he happily signed on my Barcelona football jersey.

The trip to Barcelona to watch the match was definitely a dream came true. I still cannot believe that I was given this priceless opportunity to not only catch a live football match with one of best players in the world, but to also watch a match between two of the top soccer teams in the world. Barcelona won 2 -1 in El Clasico!

Words cannot describe my emotions at Camp Nou. The atmosphere there was fantastic and the experience of being so close to the players will always stay with me. The entire trip was an experience that money can't buy and it is something I will remember for the rest of my life.