Fans singing in harmony at Arsenal v PSV by Dan Smith
On Wednesday night the air felt like it hadn’t felt in a while.
A unique taste to what you were consuming.
A smell hard to describe.
Not different …. I can’t use that word. Because in reality what thousands were about to experience used to be the normality at the Emirates.
Highbury had hosted these occasions annually in its final years.
Arsenal once had the record for the consecutive years where midweek was our normality.
As Gooners chatted to themselves, applauded the players onto the pitch…. there it was …. that familiar tune.
To many, a song that was the soundtrack of your childhood, to others an anthem taken for granted, equally some would be too young to recall this music ever being played watching the Gunners.
Aware of the song of course, maybe at other English grounds but the closest to your hero’s being on your PlayStation.
Tom Brittons iconic masterpiece had never been sung like it was in North London in midweek.
In the past, perhaps opinions on UEFA meant supporters didn’t feel the need to be vocal.
Others arrogantly didn’t feel the need to see the significance of the words, naively thinking it was a noise that would never fade. After all Mr Wenger had ensured for over two decades that the Gunners would be greeted by these lyrics.
He was mocked for ‘only’ consistently making sure we were associated with a masterpiece originally intended for George Friedric Handel’s ‘Zadok the Priest’.
Some still (and might never) see the irony that the very same fans who sang with pride pre-PSV, forced out the greatest manager in our history for the exact same landmark that Mikel Arteta is celebrated for.
Yet that’s what was beautiful about the other evening.
A fanbase so often divided singing in harmony.
All personal opinions were put to one side to reflect.
To truly appreciate the magnitude of the occasion, you need to analyse how far we had fallen.
We thought rock bottom was the Europa League song on Thursdays.
In reality it was zero European football at all, to the point that 5th was called progress.
We actually gone full cycle. Sacked Mr Wenger for only finishing in the top 4 to years later only finishing in the top 4.
In reality we reached a level were
The last 6 years hasn’t always been a fun journey, and to make sure we never take that trip again we should never take European nights for granted.
For a few seconds we were united, proud of the badge again.
When Thierry Henry was unhappy at Barcelona, he was asked would he like a return to Arsenal?
He smiled and said: ‘In life, you always go back to where you belong.’
On Wednesday, Arsenal went back to where we belong.
Back to the summit of the sport.
Back at the head of the table dining with Europe’s finest.
Back as a serious superpower.
Just how it should be.
JustArsenal Show – NEO discusses Arsenal’s excellent win over PSV and the goalkeeper conundrum….
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