We could write with certainty that in 2020 all fan bases or curve have or had a strong friendship bond with a group from a different club, during the years. Although independent, most of the ultras groups of the world find themselves in needs or desire to create a relationship with other cities, nations or continents. Examples are countless, and you could find plenty of them in the near future in this very own weekly serie which we kicked off last week with the Southern Italy Alliance!
Just at the second episode, we already find ourselves telling about a friendship that could be considered the strongest and most solid in the whole ultras world. We are talking about The Orthodox Brothers, formed by a triple friendship between three red&white club’s ultras: Delije, Serbs from Crvena Zvezda, Gate 7, Greeks from Olympiakos, and Fratria, Russians from Spartak Moscow.
There are various reasons of community between the supporters, but the same colors are certainly not a priority in this potpourri of history and tradition. Belgrade, Athens and Moscow: three capital cities, three historical rampart of countries that at some point covered a leading spot in the world society checkboard. Their famous motto “three flowers, two colors, one faith” helps us pointing out the religious bond between the three countries. Serbia, Greece and Russia all have indeed an Orthodox prevalence in their population. Political orientation also have a weight inside this pact: with more or less extremism, the three fanbases identify themselves with ideologies more to the left side than the right, mainly married in order to go against their big rivals in their respective cities. Both Partizan Belgrade and CSKA Moscow are founded back in the days by the army, Yugoslavian and Soviet. Olympiakos instead, fights the extreme right-wing ideologies of their fierce citizen rivals of Panathinaikos. The friendship between CSKA Moscow, Partizan and PAOK is not casual, and it’s there to contrast The Orthodox Brothers, another story that we will analyze in this serie.
We find the first hints to a friendship in 1986, in a fervent period for a chameleonic Europe, and close to historical facts such as the fall of the Berlin Wall, the end of the Soviet Union and the Balkan war. The occasion was an European match between Crvena Zvezda and Panathinaikos, where Olympiakos wished to joining in in order to help intimidate and fighting their biggest rivals. Thirteen years later, in 1999, we could find the first contact between Spartak Moscow and Crvena Zvezda.
Serbs are actually the glue in this three side friendship, considering there is nothing just apart from respect between Russians and Greeks. To scale back the relationship between Athens and Moscow there is also the much bigger friendship that Belgrade has with the muscovite Kremlin, as a result of two very similar kind of nationalism applied in the respective society during recent history. Already in the early 19th Century, Russian army often helped orthodox population in some balkans conflict, and all this people will mainly be gathered in Serbia in the next years. Very intense relationships are still going on between Serbia and Russia also nowadays.
Recent contacts between the ultras bases, always in the high tiers of European football, had further consolidated a bond with more than 30 years of history, and The Orthodox Brothrs could be considered as the strongest alliance in the supporters world for the upcoming years.
Below you will find some historical moments which have shaped nowadays brotherhood!
Last year Crvena Zvesda & Olympiacos met in the EL, therefore Delije prepared this choreography to celebrate the brotherhood, with the text; “Let today win the one in better mood, We’ll be brothers forever in evil and good”.
Before the match both groups met each other in streets of Belgrade for a united corteo.
In the return match in Athens, Gate 7 also prepared a tifo to emphasize their brotherhood.
Back in 2015 Spartak fans unveiled an impressive choreography celebrating their friendship with Delije!
On the 7th of November 2014 when Crvena Zvesda hosted a Euroleague match against their Greek brother Olympiacos with the Serbian fans singing in Greek the trademark Olympiacos fans’ chant “something magical”!
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