Exploring London: a global footballing capital

Two Biggest London Derbies

London is currently home to as many as 13 teams across the top four tiers of English football. The number is much bigger if we include teams from lower divisions.

From the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea, and Spurs in the Premier League down to Harrow Borough, Hendon, or Carshalton Athletic in the Southern League Premier League South and Isthmian Premier respectively, we have all sorts of clubs and profiles situated in the English capital.

Many ferocious rivalries arose between the neighboring outfits throughout history. Most are based purely on geographical location, but some were born by pure hatred between the teams’ fans. NewJerseysafebetting have done a research which is very interesting indeed. Stay tuned and enjoy the list. 

Arsenal vs Tottenham  

Anyone who follows the top flight of English football has to be aware of the tension present in the clashes between Arsenal and Tottenham. Known as the North London derby, this rivalry has everything a genuine city rivalry should possess. The teams regularly play each other in the Premier League, often in season-defining outings for both teams.

The fans easily get lost in emotions remembering long lists of heroes and traitors of the derby, while the unpleasantly close home grounds do not help to friendliness in this matchup either. It is very difficult to underline several important moments in the history of this matchup.

However, North London fans will certainly have some moments forever instilled into their heads. The abuse Sol Campbell has experienced after joining Arsenal from Tottenham in 2001, Arsenal celebrating the Premier League titles at White Hart Line in 1971 and 2004, a free-kick taken by Paul Gascoigne in the 1991 FA Cup semifinal at Wembley, etc. are only some of the moments that instantly bring joy or sadness into any Arsenal or Tottenham fan.

West Ham vs Millwall

While the former is an elite rivalry, this one is probably the fiercest of them all, not only in London but in the whole of England. It is also one of the oldest rivalries in the country. The story began in 1885 when a group of shipbuilders and dockers formed Millwall FC in the city’s East End. Just ten years later, rivaling group of workers decided to form their own team on the other side of the Thames River, later known as West Ham United.

The inaugural Dockers derby thus took place in the 1899-1900 FA Cup campaign. The teams soon moved to other places in the next decade and they were no longer East London neighbours.

However, the rivalry by no means stopped there. The hatred between the two outfits was shown in movies that kept the main focus on hooliganism and animosity between the two teams. Since Millwall have been quite far from top-flight football in recent years, the two teams rarely meet each other in present times. Nonetheless, when they do, the tension and drama are guaranteed both on and off the pitch. One of the recent clashes was played in 2009 at Upton Park and it saw both teams’ fans suffering injuries, with one Millwall supporter stabbed before the kick-off. 

More notable rivalries

All of the other London rivalries are far behind the two discussed above, but they are still worth mentioning. If you ask a West Ham fan what is his second most hatred club, the answer will be Tottenham Hotspur. Spurs also have a rivalry with Chelsea whose fans do not particularly like Arsenal as a club either. Last but not least, we have to mention Queens Park Rangers and the constant tension in their clashes against geographical neighbours Chelsea, Brentford, and Fulham

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