What’s match day like when you don’t live in the UK? Emeka C. Onyenuforo reports from Lagos, Nigeria.
Over here, there are several viewing centres in different locations. It means supporters having to travel to the nearest one to see the match.
More and more people now have DTtv (a Sub-Saharan African direct broadcast satellite service) so that it’s possible to watch games from home. It’s how I watch.
Normally, I invite a few fans and family to enjoy the game. It means my match day starts by getting up early and cleaning the house, cleaning the TV screen, then checking on the electricity to make sure there won’t be any problems or blackouts.
An hour before kick off, we all settle down to watch highlights from previous games and an in depth interview about the match.
Thirty minutes before kick-off, we switch over to the ‘live’ game. If we win, it’s celebration afterwards. If we don’t, it’s hell for everyone!
How did I become an Arsenal supporter? My late father was a fan so I inherited the passion and love from him. It’s been one of the best decisions I have made. For many others in Nigeria, it was when Kanu Nwankwo joining the cub – and course the beautiful style of play typified by Thierry Henry influenced a lot of people.
Our thanks to Emeka, who is founder of the Arsenal Supporters’ club in Nigeria.
I remember being in Angola (West Africa) for work. We were in a very remote spot and Arsenal was playing an important Champions’ League match. I urged (nay, begged) my hosts to find me somewhere to watch it. They drove us to a bar set on the edge of rainforest where there was a projector and screen – and they were showing our match. The trouble was, the screen was set up for a 4×3 picture and the football was being broadcast widescreen (16×9). I saw the match, or two thirds of it, because every time the action was on the left, the image disappeared into branches and foliage! I still don’t know how Fabianski fumbled a free kick in the penalty area into his own goal! (At least I think it was him and that’s what happened!) Hopefully things have improved now, for the sake of the local, loyal football fans!