Discussion in 'Columbus Crew' started by 110toyourleft, Dec 3, 2023.
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Foozer here, one of the old Massive 317 guys (I actually tweet with that handle from time to time). I do more lurking than posting nowadays, but between my kiddos and work it's hard to find time for much. IDK if I ever officially shared this, though I think it's been hinted or referenced in the past. I worked in the front office for a certain lower division pro team in my home city. Got to do my dream job, but the combination of start ups (literally making things up as you go) and sports kicked my butt and I only worked from 2013 (shortly after their official launch) to right before the start of the 2015 season. At some point in 2015, I had a screening interview with the Crew about a ticket ops position, but by that point I had moved on to a corporate job and things didn't work out on either side.
I actually went to my first Crew game in 2002; a 1-0 loss in extra time against the MetroStars where Brad Davis scored in overtime...McBride, Maissoneuve, Martino, and everyone else came by and signed autographs afterwards. McBride even took the time to just talk with me and my parents and, as a teenager, that made all the difference and I've been a Crew fan ever since. Met some random Indy based Crew fans with a bar in 2007/08 and have been friends with those guys ever since.
I feel super fortunate to say this will be the 4th MLS Cup I've attended. In 2008, I actually drank some terrible mixture of whatever the heck got poured into the actual MLS Cup trophy. For that reason, I tell anyone who asks that they should, whenever possible, splurge on going to the championship game of their team. You never know when they'll be back. Based on ticket prices this year, though, we might be approaching the point where I can no longer afford it.
Anyway, I usually manage to make it to the home opener and another couple games per year, almost always sitting with @cleazer. For the regular season this year, I made it to the home opener and Philly in September and then at Nashville on the road. For the playoffs, I've been lucky enough to attend the first game against Atlanta, HIR at Cincy, and will be going on Saturday. Hope I run into some people, but even if I don't post very often, know that I appreciate the people I've met from this board over the years. In the early 2000s, BigSoccer was the only way to talk with soccer fans and man did it lead to some fantastic friendships and experiences.
To take this a step further…
Six years ago, a seedy owner and a complicit commissioner conspired to try to yank us out of town. Since then, the team was saved, attendance has skyrocketed, and we’re about to host our second final in four years… IN TWO DIFFERENT STADIUMS. I’d say things are going well, where it’s arguably the single greatest time ever to be a Columbus Crew fan.
I still hope like hell we cash in on Saturday. We thought 2020 was a “year ahead of schedule” season too, and that didn’t work out. And I just don’t know what to think about the wild card that is Messi. So it’s always important to take advantage of opportunities like this. But for things under Nancy to go this well, this fast… the best may be yet to come.
Only one mountain remains for Nancy if we win on Saturday...
Never a bad time to reference The Holy Grail of American Sports.
First game in 2003, while a student at tOSU, Carlos Ruiz and the L.A. Galaxy at Columbus Crew. 20 years later, MLS Cup #3 for me this weekend, and we get to take our kids to their 1st. Somewhere early along the way, met friends for life @chelsey + her amazing family, @ZipSix , @hangthadj , @Placid Casual, @DrunkandDisorderly and countless others at the V-Army tailgate by the trees. Still have one of those V-Army scarves. Maybe I'll break it out this Saturday.
Extra credit: Founder of Crew Union: East Coast Elite
Been a member of Big Soccer since April 1999. I haven't posted anything on these boards for years. I read them when I have time. I have been a Crew fan since 1996. I went to several games over the first few seasons. Often times taking friends to their first match and they have become fans as well. Then I moved out of Ohio and started going to a college in Pennsylvania. When HCS opened in 1999, I had partial season tickets for the first few seasons of HCS. Then I moved further into the state of Pennsylvania and just stopped going to games. When I would come back to Columbus it would be for US Mens games.
My son was born in 2012 and he plays soccer and loves watching the sport. Took him to his first MLS match with the opening of Lower.com in 2021. He has been to 2 games there and 3 road MLS matches for The Crew and 1 road US Open match this season vs Loudon United. We have watched every minute of every game this season on Apple TV.
I was happy to snag 2 tickets for this MLS Cup. It will be my first MLS Cup which involved The Crew and my 2nd Cup overall.
I was very pleased to discover that my home town amateur club, Vereinigung Erzgeberge of Warminster, PA, has recently qualified for the First Round Proper of The Cup this year. I never played for them, but had friends and HS classmates who did. Yes, I grew up with a lot of German background kids. They also were once the O-30 US Amateur Champions.
In the Arace article on Tuesday he referenced the 2017 playoff game vs. Toronto when Precourt and Garber and their "lickspittles" conspired (his word) to make it seem like there was little interest in Columbus for the national ESPN audience to see.
So they opened just one gate for a sold-out stadium and then - Arace didn't mention this - they had one - ONE - guy patting down (seriously) every person through the gate. As a result, as he described it, the stadium was barely 1/2 filled at the kick, and the cameras showed this to the country. An Eastern Conference semifinal game and nobody in Columbus cares.
As it happens, I was in the line waiting to get in when the whistle blew (I was listening to Chris Doran on my phone so I knew exactly when it was) and I snapped this picture at the very moment.
For those of you who were not around back then and think maybe all the hate for those guys is overblown, this is a prime example of the crap they pulled on Columbus trying to justify killing the Crew.
We're still standing, Don.
Glory to Columbus.
Extra tidbit: Our boys play Fortnite together.
I think now is a good time to free @Placid Casual from BigSoccer jail.
I'd almost forgotten about that particular chapter of bullshittery until I read it in Arace's article. I somehow got in before kickoff, but a friend I was siting with showed up around 30 minutes into the first half. Assholes.
The multi-generational connection brings absolute joy to my soul.
So much to add as I thought about it more, primarily the connections made over the years at the various watch party spots...
Rose & Thistle (V-Army glory days)
BW-3 Bethel Rd.
Tommy Keegan's (including the bathroom flooding!)
Claddagh (though, I was living in DC during the infamous World Cup Watch Party mutiny!)
The Rose & Thistle! I recall one USMNT game I watched there (vs. Canada?) where there were maybe 4-5 of us in attendance. Damn, how things have changed.
My favorite Claddagh experience was "watch soccer like a pirate night" and I brought a laptop in to watch a pirated stream of us vs. Saprissa(I think).
Didnt this happen first vs NYCFC
We can't forget the game was on Trick-or-treat night as well. Undoubtedly, there were staffers who had to do that whole thing. Didn't the gates open 30 minutes earlier than usual or not?
I wanna know how it was "one gate open" or whatever the wording was. The same three were open that were always open. I do remember a lot of talk of opening additional gates...which wouldn't actually have helped, unless more staff had been able to come.
I think part of the problem was that Crew fans had been so used to shutting down the tailgates 30 minutes prior to kickoff and still getting in on time...that obviously was going to be a failure that night.
was that the game where the announced attendance was 14k (LUL), but by the time everyone actually made it in the stadium was full?
I believe so.
The funny thing was that on that very same night there was a playoff game in Houston where the photos showed a veritable ghost town and the league announced 18,000+.
I took my son Charlie to that match. Charlie wore his Pikachu Halloween costume so that he could be "Save The Crew Pikachu." We had seats behind where TSN had put their "on-the-field" set for their talky talkers. I may be wrong l, but I believe that was also when Michael "F U Caillou" Bradley talked shit about Columbus being MLS worthy, which kicked off the whole tradition of booing him mercilessly whenever he touched the ball.
I remember going to the top of the stands 5 minutes before kickoff and thinking there was no way all those people were going to get in on time. It was totally bs.
Here's Charlie as "Save the Crew Pikachu."
Does anyone rmeber the name of the Hudson Street Hooligans bar that Blake Compton and friends opened on, I think, Neil Ave? As I recall the city closed it down due to some ludicrous building code shit like one of the wall wasn't thick enough or something.
Anyway, I can't remember what it was called. Great pregame place.
It was on Summit, I believe, and it was just called Hooligans. Before that they hung out at Ruby Tuesday.
IIRC, the fire marshall's office was actually on-premises to inspect the neighboring business.
It was a lack of firewalls, exit signs and other stuff.
$10 for a membership and I believe the first drink was included in the $10. I believe part of HSH's defense was that "Why do they really care so much, considering it's members-only? How does this differ from having a few taps in a private garage and only inviting friends to drink?"