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Thoughts on the New England Revolution debacle

These are good people. They don't deserve what they've gotten.
These are good people. They don't deserve what they've gotten.

The New England Revolution have been a fairly successful franchise over the years in MLS. They may not have won any of them, but they made four MLS Cup finals including two in a row back in 2006 and 2007. Unfortunately, the team has long seemed to put the once-a-year soccer mom fans over their more hardcore fans. No soccer specific stadium or even any real plans for one has left them in a cavernous gridiron stadium for pretty much their entire existence. And recently, one of the more disgusting acts I've ever seen by an MLS front office took place during a game, a debacle that left a couple of Revs fans arrested (Thanks to The Bent Musket for the video) and even more of them simply disgusted.

TeamOps security came upon The Fort - the name of the supporters area at Gillette Stadium which houses a couple of supporters groups including the Midnight Riders and The Rebellion - and decided to 'crack down on profanity' by asking for the removal of the capo of the group after the popular 'You Suck, Asshole!' chant was performed. As the night continued, arrests took place and the already deadened atmosphere with the tiny crowd was completely squelched. Take a look here at The Drug Is Football and here on tBM for a more in-depth explanation of the events. Really petty and pathetic by the Revs front office.

It all reminds me of the Rapids supporters and the problems between them and the Rapids FO that we saw for so many years, efforts that squelched our real supporters groups and killed any attempts at atmosphere we ever may have had at Invesco Field up until last year when the Terraces were finally put in. Although there was never anything as straight up sickening as this, bans from the stadium and even an arrest or two took place between security and the supporters at DSGP on occasion. To this day, things like streamers, smoke bombs and a lot of other things are banned and anything to be used in the terraces has to be 'checked in' so as to avoid any conflicts.

The Revolution seem to be one of the final teams if not the final team in MLS that's stuck in the 90's when soccer in the US was a baby sport for babies and MLS was nothing more than a place to take the youth soccer team after getting ice cream. No 'European' style support at most of the stadiums, and in the places that there was that sort of thing it was usually to cavernous to hear them anyway!

Well, times have changed.

I have never been to a single major league sporting event in my life where I didn't hear a single profanity, except for a few 90's Rapids games perhaps where there weren't enough people there to HEAR the profanities. I've been to NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, NBA... pretty much every type of sporting event possible even down to college ball in America, and there has been so-called profane language at every single one, loudly often. If you're foolish enough to take your 5 year old child to a sporting event in 2011 - this ain't 1950 anymore, folks - then you damn well better expect a little profanity to come at the kid.

If Revs supporters are anything like any other supporters I've ever heard, YSA is probably one of the more mild chants that they oft perform! And if a fan from another country heard about this, there's a good chance that the reaction would be something like 'They got a bunch of people thrown out and banned from the stadium for saying 'asshole'? Are you kidding?" We as a country just need to catch up to the rest of the world, and slowly but surely we are except for incidents like this. The support is there in Boston, we've seen loads of people show up to games at times in the past. What they need is a front office who realizes that this is not a baseball team, and the real fans of the team don't want a baseball atmosphere.

Good luck to Revs fans at getting your stadium back into the hands of the people. Every supporters group in MLS is right alongside, rooting for you.