Arsenal supporters are taking on the roles of “ultras” in an attempt to improve the atmosphere at the Emirates Stadium – though fans are split.
The Gunners have been much-improved this season and currently sit at the top of the Premier League after 12 games, having won 10, drew one and lost one.
They’ve been imperious at home, winning every single one of their games – including beating Spurs and Liverpool.
A noticeable difference this year has been the atmosphere around Arsenal, with the supporters more than playing their part in getting behind the team.
In the past there has been an element of toxicity at Arsenal, with AFTV playing a part in that, but it’s all positive vibes at the moment and a couple of new hit songs have come out.
And a big driver of the atmosphere is the Ashburton Army group, located in Block 25 of the Clock End. Wearing the same t-shirts, ey’ve been organising tifos and displays, banging a drum and singing loud and proud for the full game.
They did just that in the 5-0 thrashing of Nottingham Forest, with videos posted online of the section clapping and chanting in sync to the beat of the drum.
The scenes were quite reminiscent of what we see from Crystal Palace’s ‘Holmesdale Fanatics’, and looked like something you’d expect from European ultras.
Reaction online has very much been mixed, with some hailing the atmosphere and others not having it one bit:
Arsenal’s atmosphere has been criticised ever since they moved to the Emirates from Highbury in 2006, with it struggling to recapture the magic of their old stomping ground.
Yet there’s clearly a feel-good factor at present and a culture that is completely different to recent years for the North London outfit.
Arsenal host FC Zurich in their final Europa League group game on Thursday, before playing London rivals Chelsea in a massive clash on Sunday.