This was not normality but it was a night for reconnection and a more emotional experience than expected

Since I was a boy one of my favourite sounds inside a football ground would usually occur during the opening minutes of an evening game in the winter, when a centre-half would do something mundane such as head the ball back to the goalkeeper and thousands of gloved hands would pump together, creating a wintry sonic boom.

Never did I foresee attending an evening game in December to the sound of muffled singing beneath mandatory face masks. I was at the final match at Highbury and the first game at the Emirates but in years to come how will I view attending the first game with fans allowed back at Emirates Stadium during a pandemic?

Related: Premier League fans must wear masks, not sing too much and no hugging

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