The football season in Europe is just about over! With only the English FA Cup lined up this Sunday, and the UEFA Champions League final approaching thick and fast, on June 3.
Today we’re celebrating the 12th man in football…the fans. It can become difficult to understand amidst all the stories about players, managers, agents and money in the modern game, but football is really all about the fans. Supporters are the lifeblood of the clubs, turning up week in and week out to follow the team no matter what.
Football has a way of bringing out the worst and the best in fans. From hooligans to racists, badly behaved fans are nothing new in the world of football. They come from every country and they support just about every club on the planet.
But whichever side you are in, fans make the experience of watching football worth the money. To have a good atmosphere at a football game, you need a good on-field showing and a good off field showing. A good showing by the fans involving loud chants, songs and pyro shows can immediately boost the team when it’s down.
Chanting is an age old cheering tool used by fans all across the world. In Africa , Egyptian side Al-Ahly fans are arguably the best fans in the continent, they have organised pyro shows and made banners not only for their club but also for their national side. Just like other Ultra groups all over the world, they have also come up with merchandise.
Africa’s own controversial cornet, the Vuvuzela, is hard to ignore. The plastic trumpets have become the accessory of choice for soccer fans across the continent , especially since the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Hate it or love it, the Vuvuzela has delivered glory, and heritage notwithstanding.
Tifos, with their large-scale coreografia, are a long-standing tradition in the global game, but are becoming increasingly elaborate. They are primarily arranged by ultras or a supporter club to show their love to the club] but are sometimes sponsored or arranged by the club itself. In Africa, tifos are commonplace in big clubs in Morocco like Wydad Casablanca.
Moroccan Botola Pro league may not be widely known for its quality on the pitch, but off the pitch it certainly grabs headlines. The league is home to some of the baddest and most incredible ultra groups in world football.
Mosaic artwork in stadiums has enhanced ambiance during matchdays everywhere across the world. In some countries mosaic is a name mostly used as a name for any choreography displayed by fans in the stands of an arena or stadium in connection with a sport event, mostly as part of an association football match.
Although some federations have strict regulations against fireworks and flares, pyroshows are increasingly becoming popular across the world, despite safety concerns following heightened alerts against terrorism.”
Casuals, Ultras, Torcida, die-hards, philistines…whatever you call them, fan groups remain a huge part of the global game.Follow @Muisyo_