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Is supporting Arsenal a middle class badge?


The Times this morning has fifty indicators of being middle class, such as veg boxes and dinner parties in the kitchen.   Radio 5 ran it as a theme this morning.

Number ten on the list is Arsenal: 'Middle-class men and women, with their beards [?] and trendy glasses, are strangely attracted to Arsenal Football Club above all others.  The ground is very well situated for a bit of tapas in Islington before the game, and let's face it, you're not likely to get involved in too much argy bargy when half the supporters have babies in slings and are wearing brogues.'

None of this is to be taken too seriously, but the ground in London at which I have heard the most cut glass accents is Fulham, located in Putney.   I am not suggesting for a moment that all Fulham supporters are upper drawer, but I once sat in a stand where the home support was just across a barrier and a number were wearing suits on a Saturday afternoon - and I don't think it was a hospitality area.

It's all relative, of course.   When I go to Charlton for a midweek game, I might wear an old Alan Curbishley training top that has seen better days.  My friends to the left and right of me have come straight from work and are wearing very sharp suits.

In the 1950s at Charlton, and similar clubs, you would see people in their work clothes as most factories worked on Saturday morning.   You would knock off work, go and have a pint or two, and go straight to the game.   There was even one guy who came straight from his milk round with his big leather satchel.   He later made his fortune in Indonesia.