Anonymous said: Do you know why the Arsenal & Spurs fans started fighting or do you just assume it was the rivalry? Also, cut them some slack if they were overexcited. You'll see the Red Bulls play in person many times this season. Some of these gooners won't see them play in person again for years. Lastly, you sound like you're judging them for liking a foreign club & assuming they're ignoring your local football culture because of this based on 1 relatively extraordinary weekend. You don't know their lives.
I’m under the assumption that it was the rivalry - the pointing at the hat was a good sign.
And I realize I’m casting maybe 5 or 10 dudes in one section of a 25,000-seater as symbolic of a group and that’s pretty dumb. But I also feel like there’s a difference between being overexcited and being an actively dickish guest.
The last part was really less a judgment and more a worry. And that’s less related to this match and more endemic among these international friendlies and what I believe to be the scourge of “Eurosnobbery.” Now, I realize I’m biased: I love the European game, caught a couple Fiorentina matches when I was in Florence, would totally travel down to anywhere on the East Coast if Everton choose to tour the US again and would love to see a game at Goodison one day. But I grew up on folks like Tim Howard and Clint Mathis and Mia Hamm and Brianna Scurry. I’ve always held MLS as a very important thing and to see a hell of a lot more people at these friendlies (not just RBNY-Arsenal but the International Champions Cup and the other MLS vs. English team matchups) than at actual league matches is, well, disappointing. Like, 36,000 people saw Liverpool - who tour the US every year, it seems - beat Olympiacos at Soldier Field. Yet why is it that Chicago can support European clubs and the USMNT with the Grant Park and Soldier Field watch parties while the Chicago Fire can’t even sell out Toyota Park once this year, all the while still being in shouting distance of a playoff spot and in the semifinals of the Open Cup, which could be their first trophy in eight years and tie the record for most all time?
There’s something that’s stuck in my mind about the Arsenal match the last couple of days. My dad and I are first-year RBNY season ticket holders in 103. Sometime in the second half, down in 105, a fight nearly broke out between a Gooner and a guy in a New York jersey (the blue with the white trim, I think from 2009 or 2010) and a Tottenham Hotspur hat.
And like, while I get that wearing a Spurs hat was not the smartest move on the part of the RB supporter, I don’t think he was in the wrong here. All the Arsenal fans who came in from across North America - from California and Kansas and Toronto and the greater Chesapeake area - who bought tickets from the Red Bulls and from Arsenal America and from us season ticket holders were welcome, but they were visitors. And I don’t know if they fully realized that: it was probably between 70-80% Gooners, and they were just swarming the greater New York area the past weekend. There weren’t a lot of New York supporters who dressed as such on Saturday.
But it wasn’t the Emirates. It wasn’t London. It was New Jersey. And it’s home to fans with their own history and their own culture and you don’t come there to pick fights with them because their choice of English club doesn’t jive with yours.
And perhaps I’m casting too many aspersions on this guy - perhaps he just got caught up in the moment and that regularly he supports a domestic team wherever the hell he’s from. But gosh, walking around the city and going to the match and seeing all the folks who came from across the country, who traveled great distance to see Arsenal play, and wondered if they’d go the much smaller distance to see their local team. Like, there was a bunch of folks near the Blind Pig on my walk back from PATH who were part of the Kansas City Gooners. And I really hoped that along with coming across half the country to see the Gunners play that they’d go to the Kansas side of town to the lovely Sporting Park to see a team that’s doing pretty damn well and has one of the best fan cultures int the league. And I’m just really worried they aren’t, and that they’re kinda missing out.
Two thoughts on this:
(1) I still can’t believe the Red Bulls actually seriously awarded a trophy they made up to themselves;
and (2) best face here goes to Connor Lade (good luck at the Cosmos, buddy!) followed not too far behind by Roy Miller.
This Is How The Internet Is Reacting To Ira Glass Hating Shakespeare
Radio host Ira Glass didst belittle Shakespeare and the internet doth protest.
So Ira Glass tweeted last night that he thought “maybe Shakespeare sucks” (which he’s backed down from a little) but I tweeted at him and had a minor exchange and lo and behold it’s been featured on like five different things today
So suffice it to say it’s been a strange day for me on the internet