In the seven seasons at Dick's Sporting Goods Park (DSG) since it opened on the frigid day in 2007 against D.C. United when the Rapids won 2-0, I have thought about the history of our stadium. It's a safe bet that the Rapids will not win the Eastern Conference Championship on the pitch of the DSG again so that will have to go down as a one in a lifetime special moment. With the announcement of the friendly between Mexico and Bolivia that will add history to the DSG which already has some very special moments.
Being in the media has allowed access to some of the places "regular" fans can't see like the jerseys of the teams that visit lining the halls of the chairman's club. The pictures of the snow game the U.S. Men's national team played against the Costa Rica cry babies who got their revenge when the U.S. visited some weeks later. Recorded history is a special thing when done right and the Rapids front office makes their house a great place to be in for the fans that make the trek to Commerce City.
The friendly between Bolivia and our south of the border soccer rivals Mexico was announced on Monday through various media avenues and with it comes the frenzy of seeing one of the second tier national teams in CONCACAF "El Tri" battle against the 71st ranked "La Verde". So when I wear a green shirt at this game it could be in defense of either team. This game could be a taste of national team soccer for the Mexicans and some high level competition for the Bolivians. Either way, with Mexico hosting it will be sure to sell out the 19,000 plus seats at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. When the All-Whites of New Zealand visited a few years back Mile High Stadium almost sold out and that was also a friendly. With the match last Saturday between Manchester United and A.S. Roma selling near 55,000 tickets it's clear that their is a market here for high level soccer.
Which is also why it's important that we soccer fans in the best part of the Rocky Mountains show the higher ups that we will watch any team because the next time the World Cup comes around Denver as a host city will have that important record to show the U.S. Soccer Federation that we will be a great candidate. We could fill old Mile High Stadium every fourth of July and we will watch two less than average countries duke it out in a friendly in September which I predict will turn into Blizzard game 2. Maybe the stigma of the only city that was granted the Olympics and then gave it back might be lifting a little bit. The infrastructure in 1994 was before Coors Field, LoDo, 16th street mall was a mess. Now we have a venue that has hosted a Stanley Cup game 7, a Democratic national convention, and is good luck as far as I'm concerned after the game against Costa Rica. Denver deserves higher level events. Who knows what FIFA will do with the 2022 world Cup. But we as soccer fans are doing the right thing by showing up to these events like the Mexico Friendly.