It’s not a great time to be an Arsenal fan. Heck it hasn’t been a good time to be an gooner for many years now. Nevertheless, thought I’d share my experience of fulfilling a lifelong dream of watching the Arsenal live.
Become a member
It costs 30 quid and is the simplest way to get yourself tickets. As a ‘red’ aka entry level member you’re last in line (bar the general public) when it comes to buying tickets but even then I was able to watch tier 1 games e.g. north London derby, champions league knock-out rounds by simply being persistent. Keep checking the ticket page and get to know your F5 key really well.
Pick your seats wisely
I’m a fan of the section behind the goals. Generally speaking the people around you here are less likely to be part-time fans and more likely to not only know the chants, but be willing to start them as well. Emirates has a reputation for being a ‘library’ for good reason – lots of tourists and casual fans in attendance can be frustrating for those looking to get those vocal cords going. Avoid the upper tiers at all costs – it’s a graveyard up there.
Try to attend an away game
For those on a red membership the only realistic way to get your hands on away tickets is to go on the secondary market. It’s illegal to scalp tickets in the UK but anecdotal evidence indicates that operators such as ticketbis are an honorable bunch. They do cost a pretty penny but it’s worth doing at least once during your time in the UK. I would happily trade 5 home games for one away game. The atmosphere is incomparable and the camaraderie among the band of travelling gooners makes for a memorable experience.
Forget about watching at an Islington pub on game day unless you’ve got your membership card
Most pubs will have bouncers on the door turning away anyone who doesn’t have an Arsenal membership card or game day ticket. It’s bizarre but to demonstrate how wary pubs are of troublemakers, I once got ‘IDed’ at a pub which was not only miles away from the stadium – it wasn’t even showing the game!