ARSENAL FAN VIEW: A meaningless Europa League game on a freezing Thursday has never been more popular as 272 days of waiting ended in a night that showed that playing soccer is so much more than the 90 minute game
A meaningless Europa League group game on a freezing Thursday night has never been so popular.
From the moment the first chant was sung – a usual “What do you think of Tottenham?” Fifteen minutes before kick-off, two hundred and seventy-two days of waiting came to an end.
The air was cold, the result was gratifying, but none of these emotions came home.
Arsenal finally welcomed 2,000 fans back to the Emirates Stadium on Thursday
Sportsmail’s Sam Blitz was among the 2,000 viewers who watched Arsenal Thursday night
The game on Thursday evening shows that attending soccer matches takes much more than 90 minutes. It’s about the community you go with, the familiar faces you see in the pub and in the stands, the jokes with the away fans. So there is still something missing if not everyone is there.
However, this was still a night to celebrate.
It started as soon as you hit the ground, each steward greeted you with a standing ovation through the turnstile – and that sound penetrated the terraces – as did the supporters when the stewards were keen to move them on.
The chants during the game went through the masks, but the face coverings couldn’t hold back the joy of every goal, especially Alexandre Lacazette’s opener.