After my Dad stopped going to games with me in the late 80’s I stopped going for awhile. I couldn’t afford it as I was a kid and I wouldn’t have been allowed to get the bus to Old Trafford on my own anyhow.
Around 16 years old though I started going back. I could afford the 3 pounds to stand in the Stretford End and my folks thought I was then big enough to handle myself in that environment.
Then they tore the standing area down, the premier league showed it’s face and my team became extremely popular. It was difficult to get a ticket. It was difficult to get tickets for games, primarily because of soccer tourism.
Why would Manchester United be interested in me, a kid with 10 pounds in his pocket, who will get the bus to the game, buy a ticket and a matchday programme and then go home on the bus again? Why give me a ticket when they can give that same ticket to a family of Swedes or Norwegians or Londoners, whom will fly in for 1 game, go around the museum, tour the stadium, spend $1000 in the club shop, buy pizza and beer in the stands for the cost of a second mortgage.
From a financial sense it is a no brainer, and is the reason United are so successful, why they could afford the big wages. However it alienated lot of fans, myself included whom went to watch a local lower league team (or founded one in FC United) until I moved to the USA in 2000.
So what’s my point in all this.
Did I become what I hated?
I am not an SKC fan. They are I suppose my defacto local MLS team. However I am not like Ryan and Amanda, I don’t go to most games. I jetted in for 1 game, an important game, and spent a shit load of cash and had fun then went home. The game was naturally a sell out. So did I stop a local KC bloke and his son from going to the game by snagging 2 tickets? I’d like to think I didn’t but in all honesty I probably did.
So with that caveat, of the, yes I’ve done it too…….
my meme’s last Sunday. caused a bit of a stir no? “they doth protest a little too much”
Someone mentioned to me, that picking an MLS team to support in a city that doesn’t have one is arbitrary. Well if it was completely arbitrary then we’d have a smattering of Crew fans, Dallas fans, Philly fans and the odd Montreal fan. But we don’t we probably have 5 times as many people whom associate with the Timbers than any other team. That’s not arbitrary, that’s bandwagon.
I don’t mind who you support, really I don’t. But don’t tell me it’s not jumping on a bandwagon. Because that’s just shit. you like what they’re doing out there and want to be associated with it. It is impressive what’s going on out there, but it is nothing to do with us here.
And the fact remains, that while it is impressive that Portland has had many sellouts, when lets say 2000 people jet in for a game from out of town, that’s 10% of the stadium. That’s 2000 Portland men women and children whom can’t watch their local team because of bandwagoners. Locals without tickets have every reason to resent that as I resented the “Manchester United supporters club, Carlisle branch” as their bus rolled into Manchester every 2 weeks.