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As Arsenal kick off 10th season at Emirates Stadium, Gooner Jeremy Corbyn admits: ‘I miss Highbury’

PUBLISHED: 09:00 14 August 2016

Labour leader and Islington North MP Jeremy Corbyn outside the Emirates Stadium before Arsenal's game against Tottenham in November last year. Picture: John Walton/PA Wire

Labour leader and Islington North MP Jeremy Corbyn outside the Emirates Stadium before Arsenal's game against Tottenham in November last year. Picture: John Walton/PA Wire

PA/Press Association Images

At 4pm today, Arsenal FC will begin its 10th season at the Emirates Stadium in a Premier League game against Liverpool. But one of the most famous Gooners has told the Gazette he misses the “special” atmosphere of its former Highbury home.

Labour leader and Islington North MP Jeremy Corbyn applauds Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez off the Emirates Stadium pitch at an FA Cup game against Burnley in January. Picture: Yui Mok/EmpicsLabour leader and Islington North MP Jeremy Corbyn applauds Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez off the Emirates Stadium pitch at an FA Cup game against Burnley in January. Picture: Yui Mok/Empics

It hasn’t exactly stopped staunch fan Jeremy Corbyn attending matches. The Labour leader and Islington North MP is regularly spotted at games. But he agrees with the many fans who believe a certain spirit is lacking at the Emirates.

Speaking at Hillrise Summer Festival in Archway yesterday, he admitted: “I miss the old stadium. There was a special joy being able to sit in the lower East Stand, so close to the players. It was theatre.

“The Emirates has incredible views, but it doesn’t have the same feel. And the area immediately around the stadium, all the concrete, feels a little bleak.”

With a capacity 22,000 seats greater than Highbury, Mr Corbyn added: “It’s had a good effect on Islington in the sense that more people are able to come and spend money in our bars and restaurants.

“But it’s sad that not enough was done to improve the transport links, particularly Holloway Road. It makes the point of being next to a station totally lost.”

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