A few days ago LB over on Friends Of Fulham suggested bringing Norway flags to the Split and Villa games; Yarden (another FoF poster) then contacted Dagbladet, a Norwegian paper, who afterwards ran a story on it. Here’s a translation:
The Premier League kicks off on the 13th of august and supporters in England have expressed their wish to mark last Fridays tragedy.
The fans of Fulham want to show their support by bringing Norwegian flags to the clubs home ground, Craven Cottage.
The leader of Fulham Supporters Club Norway confirms this to Dagbladet.
-The British supporters have taken this initiative. They are going to buy Norwegian flags to show that they care. As a Norwegian this is really nice to see, says the supporter leader Bjørnstad.
The Norwegian flags will be shown by a host of fans for both the Europa League qualifier against RNK Split next week, and the first league game of the season against Aston Villa, at the stadium where both Bjørn Helge Riise, John Arne Riise and Hangeland play.
Stirs up emotions
The Norwegian Support leader has been contacted by several British fans who wish to express their sympathy.
-Fulham is almost a half Norwegian club. Several English fans have contacted me to ask me how people in Norway would react to this kind of gesture. This has obviously stirred up emotions in England, and I have said it would be a very nice way to show their support, Bjørnstad says.
John Arne Riise and the rest of the Fulham squad arrived in Croatia on Wednesday and are playing a Europa League game against RNK Split tonight.
Riise tells Dagbladet that he is moved by the supporters involvement.
-It warmed my heart when I was told of this initiative from the English Fulham fans, and it is an initiative that we really appreciate. All our thoughts go out to the people and families that have been affected by the tragic events. We will never forget them, Riise tells Dagbladet.
-It’s amazing to hear about all the sympathy the Norwegian people are getting from all over the world. These tragic events will hopefully bring people closer together, make them take even better care of each other and give us an even stronger belief in the values that we know are right.
Received many reactions
Riise recently signed for Fulham and the national team player has been contacted by many of his former team mates. On his private blogg, Riise writes:
-Many of my former team mates at Roma and Liverpool have sent me texts where they say they are shocked by what happened. Many of our team mates at Fulham have talked about how incredibly sad it is. I’ve also received emails from all over the world, Riise writes.
– Football and sport becomes so meaningless at times like this. I am a professional footballer and I train when I am told to, but my mind is elsewhere.
The idea to bring flags to the game was conceived on an internet forum, and now, a short time later, many supporters have bought their Norwegian flags online.
To read more about it and where to buy flags if you’re interested, read LB’s topic here. It looks like this idea’s being really supported by the Fulham fans so there should be a good number on display and the Norwegians who have heard of it seem genuinely touched.