With less than a month until Arsenal arrive in Jakarta, we speak to popular Indonesian TV presenter Vincent Rompies about supporting Arsenal, his favourite players and this summer's tour.
Vincent, first of all how excited are you that Arsenal are coming to Indonesia?Very excited! I dream of going to Emirates Stadium one day, but Arsenal coming to Indonesia this year is quite enough to fulfil my dream for now.
Are you going to try to get to the game in Jakarta?Yes, I cant wait to see them live at GBK [Gelora Bung Karno Stadium]!
Which players in particular are you looking forward to seeing?Jack Wilshere and Theo Walcott. I love the way Wilshere plays, in every match he performs like it's the final game. I also love to see Walcott's speed. Both of them have shown their loyalty to Arsenal.
What do you think the reception will be like from the Indonesian fans?I've seen it on Twitter and also from my fans, who ask me whether I'm going to watch the game or not since they know I'm a Gooner. The GBK crowd is going to be awesome.
Why are Arsenal so popular in Indonesia?That's what I get completly confused about. Arsenal have not won any trophies for the past eight years, but the number of fans here has become huge. There are also no stars player that may have caused it. So I think people are aware that football is not always about trophies or handsome players. The 'Arsenal way' is what makes the Club so popular.
"I fell in love with the way Bergkamp plays"
When did you first become an Arsenal fan?I forget the exact year. But not long after Dennis Bergkamp and Marc Overmars started playing for Arsenal.
What is your first memory of supporting Arsenal?Bergkamp, Bergkamp, Bergkamp. I fell in love with the way he plays.
What is it about the Club that you love most?Bergkamp and how we play the 'Arsenal way'.
Have you ever had the opportunity to go to Highbury or Emirates Stadium?No, but it's on the list of my five dreams to visit Emirates Stadium one day.
Do many of your family and friends support Arsenal?My kids were indoctrinated to support Arsenal... ha ha.
Where do you tend to watch Arsenal games?Mostly at my house. But a couple of times I joined Arsenal Indonesia supporters to watch games.
What are you like when you watch Arsenal games - are you quite vocal or do you stay quiet and absorb the action?I used to be very vocal and emotional when watching the games. There was a time when I watched a match with Arsenal Indonesia supporters and became very talkative and was bullying the other club... ha ha. A couple of times I also expressed it on my Twitter timeline. But it's not good for me to be too emotional. So I choose to watch games at home and I think people already know me as a Gooner. I still express it in my timeline in positive way and people respect it.
"It's not good for me to be too emotional, so I choose to watch games at home. I still express it in my timeline in positive way and people respect it"
Have you tried to get your fans to support Arsenal as well? If so, how?I have no need to do that. But it is important for my kids to support Arsenal! There are a couple of my fans that said they became a Gooners because I am.
Which players really impressed you this season?Wilshere, Cazorla, and Arteta. Wilshere because of what I said before. Cazorla reminds me of Petit, while Arteta reminds me of Vieira.
How confident are you that we can challenge for the title next season?Very confident! But I'm not a glory hunter. Trophies are not the aim of the game for me. With last season's squad I think we can finish in the top three. Let's see who we buy in this transfer window.
What would it mean to you to see Arsenal win the title again?I just expect Arsenal to play like they did in the unbeaten season, or when Fabregas was still in the team. I can smile when we lose as long as they play the 'Arsenal way'!
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