The so-called “hooliganism”, or “barras bravas” movement as it is known in America, has always been the subject of controversy in soccer. However, Chris Knoll, a staunch supporter of English West Ham, showed that defending your club’s colors and honor is much more than wearing a shirt and sing songs to encourage the players.
Known as “Knollsy”, the 58-year-old now enjoys the title of “hero” to West Ham fans, after last May 18 will come face to face with a group of ultras from AZ Alkmaar in the Netherlands after the 1-0 that the London team gave him to qualify for the final of the Conference League. After the elimination, the local fans tried to enter the visiting stand, where a small group of West Ham fans were together with some relatives of the players.
According to the videos shared on social networks, it can be seen how Knoll, together with another pair of English ultras, endures the blows of the Dutch ultras, preventing visitors from invading the grandstand and delivering a couple of punches and kicks. This action gave him the title of “Angel of Alkmaar” and he was received with a standing ovation at the London Stadium in the match between West Ham and Leeds United in the Premier League.
“Knollsy” will see his team in the final
As confirmed by Daily MailWest Ham recognized the heroism of Chris Knoll and invited him to the Conference League final against Fiorentina of Italy, a match that will be played on June 7 at the Fortuna Arena in Prague, capital of the Czech Republic.
Knoll told the same outlet that he felt “very happy” and that he “almost cried” when he received the call from a London club official he met at the game where he became a hero by preventing the players’ families from being attacked by Dutch ultras. .
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