The Most Belligerent Fanbases in Sports

Zack Pumerantz@z_pumerantzAnalyst IIIJune 5, 2012

The Most Belligerent Fanbases in Sports

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    When thousands of passionate (and often, inebriated) fans are clogged into one venue like salty sardines in a small tin can, a natural danger can lurk in the shadows. Anything is possible.

    But while most fanatics are moments away from craziness at all times, there are a few particular fanbases that reign supreme when it comes to recklessness.

    Hostile, aggressive, sloppy—you name it and these diehard fanatics represent it.

    It's time to trace the most belligerent fanbases in sports. Some are funny, others violent, all diehard.

    Just watch out for the glass bottles and stray hot dogs. In fact, grab a helmet.

20. The Cheeseheads

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    Passionate, enthusiastic and loyal—Packers nation will always bleed yellow and green, and always be questioned for their tactics.

    Some will do anything for a couple of playoff tickets.

    The Wisconsin faithful truly are a cheesy phenomenon.

19. Red Sawx Nation

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    Now that we've finally found Bill Buckner, it's time to move on.

    Okay, so maybe that's not the notorious former first baseman, but this guy does represent everything that is Boston Red Sox.

    Naturally this fanbase was far more hostile before its team broke the nearly century-long curse in '04.

    Imagine the insanity beforehand.

18. South Africa's Musicians

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    Apparently, this crew of diehard followers didn't believe flares, bottles and pig heads were enough to show their enthusiasm, as many other countries did. Loud horns, evidently named vuvuzelas, became the ultimate support.

    Imagine tens of thousands of bees buzzzz-ing in your ears nonstop for 90 minutes. Welcome to South Africa.

17. West Virginia's Mountaineers

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    What a breathtaking performance, followed by the elegant hands-behind-head drop.

    Laying down after a brief frolic is perhaps the craziest act this guy could've performed.

16. Chicago White Sox's Youth

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    Oh, how they start so young.

    The father surely bet his kid $5 that he wouldn't run onto the field.

    One point for junior.

15. S.S.C. Napoli Faithful

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    Whether it's with pure hunting of rival fans or the ferocious use of firecrackers, Napoli's supporters continue to prove to the world that they are among the most ardent group of followers in sports.

    Perhaps it's time to calm down a bit.

14. Oregon Ducks and the Pit

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    Sure, Kirk Herbstreit called this fanbase the "most rabid in sports," but it was their treatment of Kevin Love that put the Oregon faithful in the not-so-friendly category.

    And dare we forget the University's murderous mascot.

13. Real Madrid Diehards

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    They've been known around the world as among the most exuberant, but Real Madrid supporters are beginning to border on insane.

    Hanging from street lights is certainly a new way to celebrate.

    A+ for creativity. F for limited plotline.

12. Vancouver Canucks' Green Gentlemen

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    Forget the 2011 riots after Vancouver lost the Stanley Cup to Boston, these fans are remembered most for their hilarious green ringleaders. This pair is determined to show Charlie Day that it's always sunny in Vancouver as well.

    Perhaps the two greatest fans in sports.

11. Los Angeles Dodgers Maniacs

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    After the beating of a Giants fan last year, Dodgers fans began to garner attention as one of the more ruthless fanbases in sports.

    And this was clearly no isolated incident, as a Dodgers fan was recently sent to the hospital following a four-on-one bout in the stadium parking lot. 

    Just another classy day at Dodger Stadium.

10. A.S. Roma Ultras

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    We're left dumbstruck by two conflicting incidents that seem to define Roma's hardcore following.

    An Arsenal bus ambush in 2009 and this kissing incident perfectly mesh to form perhaps the most misunderstood fanbase in all of sports.

    But after witnessing Francisco Gallardo's intense celebration, we'll never question on-pitch actions ever again.

9. Cleveland's Dawg Pound

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    Dog biscuits, eggs, double A batteries—there are evidently few objects that the fanatics in the bleacher section behind the east end zone of Cleveland Browns Stadium won't toss onto the field.

    Let's not forget the 2001 game against the Jaguars, when Browns fans chucked plastic beer bottles in response to a delayed review by referee Terry McAulay.

    And we can thank cornerback Hanford Dixon for the stellar institution of such a vociferous fanbase.

8. Montreal Canadiens Fanatics

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    With 24 Stanley Cups under their belt, the Original Six Canadiens are an illustrious bunch. And you can bet their Canadian faithful are a passionate following.

    But setting fire to at least three police cars during the 2008 playoffs after advancing past the first round, rioting after making it to the Eastern Conference finals in 2010 and booing goalie Carey Price (a Canadiens player, of course) leads us to believe they are more angry than they are appreciative.

7. FC Barcelona Cules

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    Having won La Liga (the Spanish top-flight league) 21 times, it's only natural that the world's second-richest football club would possess some of the most passionate and appreciative fans on Earth.

    But these Cules (Catalan for rear end) have written their own unique script that often clouds their team's legendary reputation.

    From the Cules at Camp de la Industria (FC Barcelona's first stadium) sitting with their posteriors over the stand, to the angry Boxwood Boys tossing a sliced pig head on the pitch in response to former Barcelona vice-captain Luís Figo leaving for rival Real Madrid, these fans have proved they are fearless. 

6. Galatasaray S.K. Enthusiasts

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    Two English soccer fans were killed before the 2000 UEFA Cup semifinal in Istanbul between Leeds United and Galatasaray. That says it all.

    Also, this group makes the list for their nickname. Or, rather, the stadium's moniker, referred to as "Hell."

    Smoke and more smoke, with the occasional tossing of flares. Extra classy.

5. Raider Nation

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    Regardless of how ruthless and out-there they may be, Raiders fans are strung together by a fearless dedication that can't be ignored.

    Costume clad and often foaming at the mouth, Raider nation has become the benchmark for diehard gridiron support.

    The Black Hole (sections 104, 105, 106 and 107) is one of the most sought after crevices in sports.

4. Millwall Bushwackers

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    Luton Town in '85, Hull City in '09 and a thuggish reputation cemented for good.

    The Millwall Bushwackers, followers of England's Millwall FC, are perhaps the most ruthless fans in all of sports.

    Their chant of "no one likes us, we don't care" is a colorful complement to their hostile temperament.

3. The Old Firm Rivalry

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    The hatred between fans of Glasgow-based clubs Rangers and Celtic is far too intense for most (as pictured here). 

    But this rivalry is far more political than athletic, as Rangers fans are seen as Loyalists, while Celtic fans are depicted as Republicans.

    Thirteen yellow cards and 34 fan arrests last year was only a side dish to the true violence behind this rivalry.

2. Philly Phanatics

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    With the accuracy of an aged Donovan McNabb, most of these fans miss their targets by a wide margin.

    But it's the thought that counts, and Philly fans are among the most thoughtless in sports.

    They boo their own players, cheer opponents' injuries (see Michael Irvin) and possess arguably the most inhumane and reckless patrons in sports.

    A Flyers fan was seen epically fighting Toronto's Tie Domi in the penalty box, and a Phillies fan was arrested for rebelliously vomiting on an 11-year-old girl. Need we say more?

    We've had enough cheesesteaks for several lifetimes.

1. Red Star Belgrade's Delije

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    Translated roughly as Heroes, the Delije started perhaps the most violent battle in sports history in 1990.

    As Yugoslavia continued to deteriorate, nationalism began to flood the streets of the Balkan region.

    On May 13, 1990, 3,000 Red Star supporters traveled to Zagreb's Maksimir to watch Red Star battle the Dinamo Zagreb.

    The resulting riot was simply tragic.