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From Russia With Love

BY ANNA LVOVA / @MadRuskiGunner

My obsession with football is hereditary. Indeed, I have a serious suspicion that my father was born with a ball glued to his tiny little feet. I can’t remember him not watching or playing football. Ever.

When late at night in the summer of 1986 he sneaked into my room to watch the World Cup final between West Germany and Argentina, he did me a huge favour - he invited me to fall in love with football. I have cherished the beautiful game since that day and carry my devotion with me everywhere I go.  

Nowadays as soon as people realise how much time and energy I spend following the game their eyebrows raise higher than Carlo Ancelotti’s.  When I answer the next obvious question about the club I support, they look like Arshavin on his first day inside Arsenal’s locker rooms.

To re-phrase the famous Thierry Henry quote “I may be Russian but I support The Arsenal”.

As someone who was taught by her father that the most important thing in football is the beauty of the game, would it have been possible to support any team other than Arsenal ? I very much doubt it. It doesn’t matter how old you are, if you witnessed the ‘Invincibles’ or have taken the time to study the history of this great club, there is no other choice.

So here I am. Living thousands of kilometres away from North London. Putting on my red and white t-shirts on for matchdays. Singing Arsenal chants in front of my television. Gaining grey hair, fraying my nerves, going insane, jumping for joy, laughing, crying. Not many things in my life give me that rollercoaster of emotions! And you know what? I wouldn’t trade it for anything!

I live in hope that one fine day I will finally get the chance to watch a match at the Emirates Stadium. I've lived long enough to know that if you really want something, you will get it in the end.


Reader Comments (2)

Nice one Anna, cheers from a Russian Gunner living in London.

October 25, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAleks

Anna I'm sure you will make it to an Arsenal home game soon. I remember for years waiting to see the Gunners at Highbury and it was worth the wait even if it was a terrible game during the Bruce Rioch era, a 2-1 home win over Leeds with Ian Wright hooking a winner into the Clock End. I didn't care I was just so happy to be at Highbury in the Lower East stand.

It's well worth the wait.

Good luck and hope to hear you got to a game soon.


October 26, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBarry from Ireland
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