Seattle’s Invasion And The Lessons To Be Learned

We’d love to move on from Saturday’s defeat to Seattle. We really would.

Actually, we’d love to just move on to the end of the season.

Before we can do either though, there’s a point of much discussion which we’d like to address – namely, the Southsiders at Empire Field on Saturday evening.

A number of people have been critical of how the Southsiders were outsung by the ECS and Seattle fans and their performance on the night.

As a long time Southsiders, I’m not even to begin to sugar coat it. We were outsung in our own house by one of our fiercest rivals. Seattle’s fans owned Empire last weekend.

It’s not an uncommon thing in football though for the away support to be loud, boisterous and obnoxious as hell, and often they are much more vocal than the home supporters.

There is no doubt that the Southsiders heads went down during the game. The players have admitted that their’s did, so why should the fans be any different? Some will argue that it is the supporters group job to keep the support up for the full ninety minutes.

I disagree.

There are not many Leagues around the world where the supporters are cranked up to ten for the whole game. Coming from the UK, the singing, chanting and TIFO displays that we have here far exceed what I’m used to. It’s a welcome change but it doesn’t mean we have to be non stop.

Vocal support also has to be earned as far as I’m concerned.

The performance by the players on the pitch shapes the performance of the supporters off it and let’s be totally frank here, the performance of Whitecaps fans this season has been far better than the results, and at times efforts, from the team.

We had a lesser display against Seattle. So what? Deal with it people and let’s make sure that we don’t repeat it on Sunday against Portland.

I know that when the penalty went in, I was deflated and by the time the third goal crashed into the back of Joe Cannon’s net, I was pretty disheartened and could hardly muster up a chant for the rest of the match.

I also didn’t applaud the players off the pitch, as I didn’t think they deserved it. If you think that makes me a bad supporter then get a reality check. We’re not here to show blind faith. We need something back in return. We shouldn’t be sheep.

The atmosphere on Saturday and the noise from the Seattle support wasn’t helped by whichever brainiac at the front office decided to put the ECS under a fucking roof right beside the broadcast booth to amplify their noise both in the stadium and for the viewers at home. At least at BC Place we’re all going to be under a roof if it’s closed.

Watching TSN’s coverage, all you could hear was the Seattle fans. The fact that the Canadian station kept showing the American fans also didn’t help.

In the stadium, when we were singing, we couldn’t hear the ECS. Unfortunately, the rest of the stadium couldn’t hear us either for most of the game, only them.

People have complained about Seattle fans in amongst the Vancouver support. Who do you blame for that? The front office?

Frankly, I blame the Vancouver public who let Seattle fans get these tickets because they couldn’t be arsed going themselves or getting of their asses soon enough to buy them. You can’t blame the Club for selling tickets to whoever wants to buy them. The only exception should be no away supporters in the home team’s supporters section at any of the three team’s stadiums.

If you were a Seattle fan and not a member of ECS or Gorilla FC, then you weren’t going to get a ticket to the match, so you only had one other option. You can’t blame loyal Seattle fans for wanting to watch their team. If the situation was in reverse, I’d most certainly be buying a ticket amongst the Seattle support if that was the only way I was going to see the game.

Hopefully this will alert the Caps FO to the huge demand from down south and allocate a bigger section at BC Place for travelling support. Season ticket logistics may not make this possible though and having them placed in the upper tier above home supporters should be an immediate no-no. As usual with the Caps, the contingancy plan may not be in place.

The whole 500 away fans allocation and how it is handled needs to be seriously reviewed and revised for next season, but that’s an article for another day.

On Sunday, the vastly less obnoxious of the US Cascadians come a calling.

A lot of work has gone behind the scenes this week to try and get the Southside rocking and to create an atmosphere to be proud of at our new home.

Admittedly part of that was due to the fact that there was another ticketing fuck up. We haven’t reported this yet as it could actually work out as a benefit for the Southside, so we’ll see how things pan out on Sunday.

There are problems within the Southside with regards to creating an atmosphere.

We’re hoping that the move to BC Place will iron out some of these and the Caps seem to be a lot more receptive of ways forward involving Capos and megaphones, now that their shackles of the PNE have been removed.

The Southsiders now have four games to see what needs to worked upon next season but it should not all be up to this supporters group to build the right atmospheree at Caps game.

EVERY supporter is responsible.

There were a lot of comments from non Southsiders after Saturday’s game saying we didn’t bring it.

In case people didn’t notice, the Southsiders are not some performance artistes that you are paying your money to see. You want a better atmosphere, then play your part in getting it.

Not everyone wants to stand and sing. We fully accept that. We all support the Caps in our own way. Keep supporting them the way you are comfortable with.

Just make sure you do it and bring the noise and passion.

To nick a Canucks slogan, remember, WE ARE ALL WHITECAPS.

Authored by: Michael McColl

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