Philadelphia is widely regarded as one of America's most passionate sports towns. But don't let legendary tales of fans pelting Santa with snow balls or of a jail in the old football stadium scare you away. When it comes to Arsenal, branch manager George Sedgwick says Philly earns its moniker.
"If you are thinking of watching an EPL game in Philly, please look us up. The Philly Gooners are a loyal, fun, and helpful bunch, and we will be happy to make sure you know where to go for true Arsenal support in the City of Brotherly Love."
Meet the fans: Philly Gooners
Year established: 2002
"Back then, finding Arsenal on American television was not easy. Most supporters took to the Internet or a scant few pubs to watch. As a result, we Philly Gooners bonded as fans and friends. The group founders have remained close to this day, even though some have moved to different cities and encouraged Arsenal fandom in other parts of the country."
Number of active members: "Since we’ve moved to an Arsenal-only pub, we get between 50 and 100 supporters for most games. For the biggest matches, we’ve had quite a few more
"Overall, there are about 700 in our group and many are active in discussion on Facebook and Twitter"
Arsenal in Philadelphia: "Philly has a large EPL following. Arsenal seems to be second in terms of supporting numbers, with Man U being on top of the pile."
Where our members hail from: "Most who watch games are locals, but we tend to get a few Ex-pats, college students, and folks on trips, too. At any given game, we typically have 1 or 2 'visiting' Gooners."
Group's favorite Arsenal moment: "A very memorable moment would be our 5-2 win over Spurs in February 2012. The pub was filled with one-game-only Spurs fans, led by a fan who has his own internet radio show. We Gooners, who are one of the largest supporting groups at Fado, had never seen 99 percent of the Spurs fans, and were surprised by their numbers...and as we went down two goals, the Spurs fans were very vocal about their team. As you know, we turned the tide, and our singing added to the strength of our victory.
...And we haven't had much Spur support at the pub since then!"
Group's all-time favorite players: "Always, the entire current squad. But who can leave out the brilliance of TH14, the aplomb of Pires, the vision of Cesc, and the shining future with Wilshere."
Why we are Gooners: "We are Gooners because Arsenal play with class, skill, and intelligence. Also, because of Wenger's genius. Mostly though, because we just are, through and through."Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 21 Sep 2011