Do Arsenal fans feel more passionate about club than country? (Opinion)

The European Championships were supposed to have taken place this summer, with the semi-final and final of the event taking place in England, but has international football lost it’s edge over club football?

Darren Bent had the discussion on TalkSPORT earlier this week, where he claimed he would prefer World Cup glory over the Champions League or any club glory.

He went onto add that he wouldn’t accept relegation as a sacrifice for the international glory, but he would accept his boyhood club finishing without European football in order for England to win, not that one would have much impetus on the other…

This is of course the opinion of a former player, and former England international, and fans opinions will of course vary from the other side of the television

I’ve followed England my entire life having been born in North London, and despite my father being anti-England somewhat as he cheered on the Republic of Ireland, and in my younger years, I definitely felt more inclined to be passionate in support of my country of birth, but Arsenal eventually took over.

It’s hard to understand just why I felt that England was now less important, but watching them failed to pull the heart-strings that you get from watching club football nowadays.

In recent years, I do try to make sure that I watch every England game, as well as watching every Arsenal match that I can, and the Three Lions have had a resurgence in recent tournaments in getting fans back onside, possibly down to the football, or possibly down to different reactions to the press, but Arsenal remains as number one for me.

I know not all Arsenal fans are English or England fans, but am I alone in feeling more passionate watching my club than my country?


Tags England


  1. I’ll prefer my country wins the world cup than my club winning the league, but I’ll prefer champions league for my club over the world cup any day.
    I’m Nigerian btw.

      1. Feels bad for you mate ,we are in the same boat having to watch 2nd class players for our country’s ,iwobi ,and Dele should both be playing in league two .

        1. Eh your not to bad I’ve to support Ireland and we havnt had a decent player since Roy Keane.
          So yeh Arsenal first for me as I like good football of course I’d like the country to win but No chance atm.

  2. I’ve not watched international football for quite awhile ,couldn’t bring myself to TBH, any match where I have to sit and watch Kane ,Dele would make me feel like bringing something up my throat .

    1. Exactly, Dan!! The International break bores me to tears… I could think of better things to be doing than watching those 2 muppets!!

  3. An interesting article Patrick and I guess that like you and it seems a majority of fans across our country- not sure about all other countries though- I have always been far more passionate about our club than my country.

    Apart from world cup and WC qualifiers to a lesser extent, I do not think about the England team from one tourament to the next. But not a day goes past where Arsenal is not on my mind and hopes. Perhaps a poll of Gooners who say yea or nay to your question would be interesting?

  4. Club always ahead of country.
    A patriotic Arsenal friend disagreed, ok, I said Aubameyang or Kane… there’s only one answer… rest my case.
    I also struggle to support a team of players I hate most of the year

    1. Given most of the responses, a more interesting choice would be Club or Country (featuring a starting line-up including AMN, Holding, Chambers, Saka, ESR, Willock, Jules and Nketiah…

  5. I’ve always followed my country and always hope they do well in every game they play. i dont watch friendlies as they are just a waste of time but i do watch the qualifiers and the actual tournaments.
    But I’d much rather my club do better as they are the ones i have a season ticket for.

  6. I feel most people are more enthused about Club football than internationals because they are more frequent, to the point where international breaks are perceived as an interruption we could do without. Club teams get to compete for more trophies within a year, than national teams do over the course of 5 or 6 yrs, and players from all over the world can feature for club teams, which gives club sides a limitless pool of talents to draw from, this amps up the interest as well, with global scouting, and especially transfer windows (the bane of arsenal fans 😀).
    I believe if the the frequency of play is reversed, most people would be more enthused about their national teams, but it could breed excessive patriotism and all. Instead of seeing news such as Roma fans attack Inter fans on a subway, it’d be Germans attack the French after a game, and I don’t think that’s good for global politics.

  7. I always want to see England lose – and Asn’l win. But I have no right to have an opinion. I’m from XXX stupid Sweden.

  8. Constant failure of my national team has made me diverted all football love for club football, and now that I follow a club that have been so inconsistent since over 13yrs, I am now mature and more in control of my football emotion.
    However, my bragging right when my club win big trophies / shame when club relegate will be so huge much more than when my national team is in similar situation.
    In other words, I’ll be more happy when arsenal win UCL than Nigerian winning world cup(which I might not even watch maybe until semis)

  9. International football didn’t lose its edge against club football, it never had an edge to begin with.

  10. The simple truth is Arsenal first…national team meh. Arsenal is a choice. We make it on our own, its a decision we stick with and bear all associated ramifications. Supporting the national side is kinda coerced and herd mentality as most would rather support other awesome footballing nations but are stuck with yr team, false sense of patriotism blah blah blah..but for me football is about passion, creativity and beauty. If the national swuad lacks this…then i cant support them.

  11. as much as i would love arsenal to win the champions league,Nigerian winning the world cup would be more appealing to me

  12. I am from India, and in spite of recent improvements in the football scenario, Indians and football don’t go well together as its mostly Cricket or nothing here. I don’t like Cricket, Love football and Arsenal were the first football team I watched on TV, so it makes an easy choice for me, lol!

    1. Sid, Rather a pity that you don’t like cricket(which I much love) when your country is ranked number one! Such is life, I suppose.

      1. @Jonfox Always wanted to watch Cricket but never understood it. Cricket is not a fan favourite in my country. Love to know how to watch though.


      2. I used to play it in my childhood, but it didn’t appeal to me as much as football though. But I do like our national team, England national team and Australian national team and support them, in that order, in international tournaments.

  13. Personally i do not miss watching any arsenal game except by nature of my work; when i am hooked in the operating theatre. My national team games, i can afford to hear the result later.

  14. Excellent topic/question.
    I support both my Danish national team and Arsenal, but if I was forced to choose, Arsenal comes first 🙂

  15. Arsenal before dozing off to England set peicing their way to a quarter final losses all day every day.
    Club v country being just the start, I would leave my wife before Arsenal. I would seriously consider putting my kids up for adoption before Arsenal (would settle on foster care with limited access).

    1. I used to to love watching the English teams in the late 90’s but comparing to now where 60% of the players are from Tottenham makes watching the team really boring so I guess I’ll probably take arsenal over watching England, but been a Nigerian its tough to choose…

  16. Well. Arsenal winning the CL would be cool, would probably not sleep that night but Nigeria winning the World Cup will be grand! But if its the choice of which games to watch, love them in red than green. There was this euphoria when Arsenal won the FA Cup in 2014, uncomparebale to Nigeria winning the AfCOn in 2013.

  17. Tough article to decipher…
    The only two football matches that broke me in history were..
    1: Nigeria 1 Italia 2 (USA 94)
    2:arsenal 1 fc barca 2(UCL 06)
    Baggio and Belleti ,damn you guys

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