Having missed out on last season’s home tie against Barcelona in the Champions League, I think yesterday provided the briefest of hints of what a home European tie at the Emirates can be like. Of course Captain Vantastic did the business again, and we’re through to the knockout stage, with a job well done, but something else troubled me early on. And that was how the Dortmund fans out-sang us Gooners for much of the game.
I know away fans are usually loud, but the synchronised lake of yellow and black, was an incredible sight to behold, and more than once distracted me from an uninspiring start by Arsenal. A variety of co-ordinated sing-alongs, and hand claps – including a rendition of what sounded like Roll Out The Barrel – echoed from the corner of the Clock-End and East Bank, reaching us North Bank residents with little in the way of reply.
We tried our usual volume, but the Emirates wasn’t taking. Did the Dortmund game go to General Sale? I’m not sure. Perhaps people gave up trying to get to the game due to Underground delays, that accounted for the empty seats and so the lack of noise. Whatever it was, the Arsenal faithful were largely quiet.
Until we scored. Alex Song showed almost unbelievable (and somewhat uncharacteristic) style in passing three Dortmund players, and clipping a smart cross met by an RVP header that proved too powerful for Weidenfeller. And then the songs rang out, quite literally.
- ONE SONG! We’ve only got ONE SONG!
- 1-0 To The Arsenal!
- Robin Van Persie! Robin Van Persie!
- Sing When You’re Winning – You Only Sing When Your Winning!