Conflicting reports of what really happened with Koln fans at the Emirates

Opening win

The Gunners hosted FC Koln in their first Europa League/UEFA Cup match since 2000.

Arsenal were 3-1 winners on the night, with Sead Kolasinac, Alexis Sanchez and Hector Bellerin all scoring.

Arsenal went behind early on courtesy of an incredible 45-yard strike from Jhon Cordoba, before the home side turned things around in the second half.

Arsenal statement

The match was somewhat marred by crowd trouble, with kick-off delayed by an hour. Despite some doubts, it was eventually it was decided that the safest option was to let the match go ahead.

Arsenal released a statement on Friday morning regarding Thursday night’s controversy with away supporters at the Emirates Stadium.

“We worked in full consultation with police and UEFA officials on the night and in advance of the game and had taken extensive steps in advance to prevent tickets being sold to visiting supporters,” the statement said.

“We have launched a full review into the circumstances surrounding the game and will ensure any lessons that can be learned are used in the future.”

You can read the full statement here.

Overreaction?

While it is true that 20,000 German fans descended on London, as we reported on Wednesday, and that they were only allocated 3,000 tickets, there have been conflicting reports of what went down on Thursday night.

It is also true that many of the traveling fans were boisterous, with some pushing their way into the stadium, and others lighting flares inside the ground. But that does not tell the whole story.

Many Koln fans were segregated with the home supporters, leading to, ultimately unfounded, fears of crowd violence. Some even disguised themselves as home fans, wearing Arsenal shirts.

Two sides to the story

An insightful Twitter thread from football journalist and Koln local Archie Rhind-Tutt sheds more light.

 


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