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Willem II played SC Cambuur in the Eerste Divisie on Friday, February 2. The Willem II ultras group, Tilburg Tifosi, produced an electric pre-match tifo to celebrate their 20th anniversary. The display included banners and pyrotechnics to honour the origins and contributions of the Tifosi group since its inception.
Background information about Tilburg Tifosi
Tilburg Tifosi are the main supporters’ group of Willem II, and they were founded in 2003. They provide flags, banners, and displays before every home game. All the banners, flags, and displays are designed and made by the Tifosi group themselves with the help of different companies. As well as this, the fabric that is used for the banners is stitched, and the paintings are done by members of the Tifosi team.
On their website, Tilburg Tifosi said: “Our goal is simple: to provide full support so that the players get the three points. The bond between players, the club and supporters is what we are proud of at Willem II.”
Tilburg Tifosi rely on donations from supporters and sponsors to produce the banners and flags that have been synonymous with Willem II home matches for 20 years.
Willem II Limited Edition Shirt
For the game against SC Cambuur, the Willem II players wore 20th anniversary shirts. The shirt was a limited-edition design with ten of Tifosi’s most iconic tifo displays over the last 20 years worked into the stripes.
The Tifosi logo is displayed on the left-hand side of the shirt, with the colours of Willem II designed in a paint-stripe style to honour the coordination of banners that have been produced by the group. Willem II worked with the merchandise group, Robey, to design the one-off shirt.
These shirts are not commercially available at the moment, however, they are being auctioned on the ‘Matchwornshirt’ website to raise money for the Tifosi. Tilburg Tifosi announced that the auction closes on January 10, 2024, at 3pm GMT.
The Tifo Explained
Located behind the goal in the stand called the “Kingside”, Tilburg Tifosi unveiled a message that stretched across the bottom of the stand. The message read, “Uit troots onstaan gevormd door eeuwige trouw. 20 Jaar Tilburg Tifosi uit liefde voor het rood wit blauw.” This can be translated to “Born from pride, shaped by eternal loyalty. 20 years of Tilburg Tifosi out of love for the red, white and blue.”
Above the message was a three-part display. On the left-hand side, a figure wearing a blue shirt is depicted wearing a blue shirt with the badge of Tilburg Tifosi over the message “20 Jaar.” On the opposite side is a figure wearing the Willem II anniversary shirt, which includes the Tilburg Tifosi badge. Meanwhile, in the middle a larger version of the Tilburg Tifosi badge was displayed, with the number 20 immediately behind it. In the background, figures in black and white are depicted writing Tilburg Tifosi in graffiti on a wall.
Finally, the fans in the Kingside stand produced a spectacular airborne pyrotechnics display in the red, white, and blue colours of Willem II.
The game finished 1-1, with Thijs Oosting scoring the equalising goal for Willem II. This leaves the Tilburg-based club five points clear at the top of the Eerste Divisie, which is the second tier in Dutch football.