Welcome to Wests Ashfield & the home of Arsenal Sydney, THE ARMOURY for the Sydney version of the 2015 FA Cup Final.
Now many would have you believe that ‘Foreign’ Arsenal fans have no passion, no connection to the club and understanding of what it is like to be a Gooner, ooh to, ooh to be, ooh to be a Gooner.
Well I’m sorry but they are wrong & Arsenal Sydney is the living proof.
The evening starts, at 10pm, with an exhibition of Arsenal & programs, shirts & memorabilia collected from every Arsenal FA Cup final appearance since 1930.
Elijah (more from him later) has spent the last 10 years collecting all his memorabilia, with the prize draw (in my opinion) being a worn boot signed by Frank McKlintock, which was personally signed when Elijah went to Frank’s house on a visit to the UK.
This follows the exhibition that Elijah put together a few months back, which was his personal collection of Arsenal shirts, 88 in total, the largest collection in Australia. (And I thought I had a lot of shirts)
Arsenal Fan TV were also present, interviewing for Arsenal Fan TV (obviously), collating the views of Aussie Gooners on the season & the future of Arsenal.
Unfortunately the interviews aren’t up yet but they did get some awesome crowd footage inside the Armoury.
There was also an influx of supporters from further afield, Australia’s a big place.
Minibuses arrived from Wollongong , Newcastle and Canberra.
I was especially impressed with the boys from Canberra, a 700km round trip, which is a bitch if you don’t get home till 8am on a Sunday morning.
Come kick off, at 2.30am, my mate Matt & I are ready and the venue is crammed with 800+ Gooners, all giving large for The Arsenal.
You know the result, so you don’t need me to eulogise on The Arsenals performance.
All I have to add is that at 4.30am, the cheer when we lifted the Cup was as loud & meaningful as anywhere else in the world.
For (nearly) the last thoughts on tonight’s proceedings, I leave you with one of the architects of the evening Elijah (@aussiegoona) and his take on The Arsenal and Arsenal Sydney.
Arsenal Sydney once again put on the biggest event in Arsenal history down under with The Armoury rammed with over 800 in attendance!
Gooners travelled from all over Sydney, Blue Mountains, as well as a bus load from Wollongong, a bunch of road trippers from Newcastle, and even 2 from Canberra who caught the bus back home a few hours later! There was also a few that were visiting from the UK as well as a Gooner from Tamworth. country NSW!
Wests Ashfield treated attendees with the greatest comfort offering ample parking, a special dinner menu that went all night, drinks flowing, and plenty of rooms to watch the mighty Arsenal!
Yours truly, (@AussieGoona) put on an entrée to get everyone into the mood to remind us all our rich FA Cup success with “The Arsenal Exhibition 2” showcasing a rare collection of match programs, balls, boots and kits from across the clubs its entire FA Cup Final winning seasons starting with the 1930 match program!
This helped raise over $500 for Make A Wish this year, a magnificent effort.
As for the atmosphere it was absolutely amazing! The chanting was non stop and Sanchez’s goal brought the roof down. When full-time came there were tears and cheers as we achieved what no other club has – 12 FA Cups – the most in history.
As sunrise came, Gooners embraced each other knowing there was pride restored again after another baron Premier League season, giving us all hope that maybe just maybe we will all be back to see us lift that other trophy we long for.
Thank you to all that came, as well as Wests Ashfield who know how to support the greatest supporters club in Australia!”
You should never question a Gooners loyalty or commitment, wherever we are in the world.
And for my last thoughts on The Arsenal for this season I leave you with –
On our 12th FA Cup win, my true love gave to me….. (thanks to Adi @skinnybrownie)