20 Most Thuggish Fanbases in World Football

Thomas Atzenhoffer@socceratzCorrespondent IIJanuary 29, 2012

20 Most Thuggish Fanbases in World Football

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    Football is known as the sport around the world with the most violent fans around. Whether it be organized hooliganism to random acts of thuggery and violence, in many cases it has been proven as the truth.

    Webster's Dictionary defines with word thug as; a brutal ruffian or assassin. While the second part of the definition is taking it to the extreme in our current discussion, brutal ruffian definitely is much more in the ballpark.

    While some fans can be loud, others hostile and yet more of them guilty of however many assaulting chants, there are those groups of fans that do it all.

Sparta Praha

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    Czech Republic side Sparta Praha are a European side that are known for their ruthless fan base.

    The are as bad with local rivals as they are with visitors such as Croatia's Dynamo Zagreb.

Athletico Madrid

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    Atletico Madrid's fans have a violent history in the world of football. From racist chants to people dying in the streets during hooligan showdowns, the working class local rivals of Real Madrid have been on the map of violence for years.

    The club are known as much for their violence towards rival Spanish clubs as they are to visiting clubs such as Scottish side Aberdeen FC, which had a fan brawl ensue during the 2007 UEFA Cup campaign.

Dynamo Zagreb

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    Croatian club Dynamo Zagreb boast some of the most thuggish fans on the Balkan Peninsula and throughout Europe.

    The club have been involved with major confrontations with clubs such as Sparta Praha and Red Star Belgrade, as well as their national rivals Hajduk Split.

    Two of the worst incidents were their 1990 altercation with Red Star Belgrade and their 2008 bust up with Praha.


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    One of Brazil's biggest clubs, Flamengo, also boasts some of the nation's most thuggish fans. Their rivalry with Fluminense is one of the most violent in the world, and has brought out the bad side of the fans more times than not.


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    FC Barcelona have been on the radar as violent and outspoken for years. Some of their most violent times come out during the Classico Rivalry with Real Madrid, as well as the Barcelona derby with Espanyol.

    These people throw pigs heads, cell phones, beers and chant racist chants whenever the opportunity arises, making them pretty thuggish.

Aston Villa

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    Aston Villa were one of many English clubs that had violent hooligan groups throughout the 1970s.

    While they have not been as active lately, they still remain as one of the most outspoken groups of fans in the United Kingdom.

Wisla Krakow

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    Poland is a country plagued by football hooliganism and thuggish fans. Wisla Krakow have a major following of raucous and riotous fans that have caused major problems from one end of the spectrum to the other.

    Dino Baggio of Parma FC was stabbed in the head from a knife thrown by Wisla supporters in 1999, and in 2003, Wisla hooligans were part of a five club brawl in Wroclaw, Poland.


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    Grecian side PAOK FC are known for their fans atmosphere in the Toumba Stadium. Known as "Black Hell" to many sides that set foot in the stadium.

    The Gate 4 supporters are the most infamous and cause the majority of problems that the club is ever known for.

Zenit Saint Petersburg

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    Russia's second city, Saint Petersburg is home to the nation's most known group of thuggish fans, both domestically and internationally.

    The hooligan and fan groups of Zenit St. Petersburg have caused problems all over the continent while making themselves the more feared group when compared to the sides that call Moscow home.

    Zenit and Glasgow Rangers had a major riot in 2008 during the UEFA Cup.

West Ham United

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    West Ham United are one side of London's most violent clash of clubs that we will mention a little later.

    The supporters of the club are among several that movies about football hooliganism have been based.

Celtic and Glasgow Rangers

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    Glasgow Scotland's two biggest clubs, Celtic FC and Glasgow Rangers FC, effectively known as the Old Firm, are the most violent sets of fans in all of Scotland.

    Anyone that has been to an Old Firm Derby can clarify all that is necessary.

Feyenoord Rotterdam

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    The Netherlands' most violent and thuggish set of fans are those of Feyenoord Rotterdam.

    With more riots, fan brawls, fan injuries and deaths than most teams in the league combined, it is no doub the worst group to mess with just across from the English Channel.


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    Fenerbahce is one of the major Istanbul-based clubs that are known for a rough and thuggish fan base.

    Rivalry matches with Glatasaray are some of the most brutally contested between hooligan groups and normal fans alike.

Red Star Belgrade

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    Serbia's Red Star Belgrade have been a constant source of thuggish behavior for decades.

    Traveling brawls and riots with continental rivals, and local battles with Partizan Belgrade and other national rivals only add to the reputation of the fans.

Birmingham City

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    Birmingham City are the local rivals of Aston Villa, but are far more noteworthy for their violent fan base. The Zulu's and other spin-offs of the original hooligan group of the club are some of the worst in all of England.

    The 1985 riot involving fans of Birmingham and Leeds United is one of the worst in football history.

SS Lazio

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    Rome is home to two major clubs  (AS Roma and SS Lazio) who share the Stadio Olympico. While often times the Roma Ultras will steal the spotlight, Lazio has a massive ultra-following that are some of the most violent in all of Europe.

    Lazio's position as the second club in their City has seen them develop friendships with other clubs of similar fashion including Chelsea, West Ham United, Inter Milan, Glasgow Rangers and Espanyol respectively.


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    Peruvian club Universitario have the most violent fans in their country and some of the most violent in all of South America.

    Fans have been killed in stampedes, thrown from terraces and killed, as well as these fans torching the buses of traveling fans.


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    London-based Millwall have been a thorn in the side of English football for decades.

    Two of their most famous incidents include the 1985 Kenilworth Road Riot and the 2009 Upton Park Riot which involved hated local rivals West Ham United.

    The Bushwackers are the most famous of their hooligan and thug supporters, with the group usually consisting of anywhere from 200-250 at a time. They are by far the most fanatical supporters of the club.


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    The 2000s saw AS Roma fans involved with numerous altercations involving fan violence, stabbings and constant hooliganism and thuggery.

    Twice in 2001 Liverpool supporters were stabbed in Rome. Middlesbrough fans were attacked and stabbed in 2006 and in 2007 another altercation with an English side, Manchester United, saw more visiting fans fall victim to thugs.

    Local battles with SS Lazio fans also result in a major amount of violent problems in Italy's eternal city.


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    "Welcome to Hell" is the greeting to any fan or club that set foot in the Ali Sami Yen stadium, which was one of the toughest stadiums in all of Europe before the club moved to the Turk Telecom Arena. There, the tradition continued with double the fan base.

    Galatasaray fans have been involved with more thuggish and hooligan activity than many Turkish teams combined.

    Battles with Fenerbahce, Arsenal and Leeds United are some of the most documented of the club's history.

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