As some of you know, I write on Mondays for a sports blog called the Burgundy Wave, a sports blog for our Colorado Rapids Soccer Club. This past Saturday, my daughter and I went to see the final home game of the season between our Rapids and FC Dallas (‘FC’ means ‘football club’—what every other country in the world calls soccer). I write for them because it helps me stay connected with not only other Rapids fans, but also my community in a non-church environment.
The last home game was also Fan Appreciation Day. My daughter and I had a great time where we watched our team play in fantastic fall weather, eating nachos, and just soaking it all in. A Rapids representative asked us if we would like to participate in a ‘jersey off their back’ event after the game on the field. We would pick a card that contained the uniform number of a player on the Rapids roster, who would then give us the ‘shirt off his back’ and sign the card. What a surprise.
Keep in mind, the Rapids lost 1-0, continuing an abysmal 12-game winless streak (their last win? July 25 against Chivas USA). But meeting the players, hearing their heart about how much they appreciated us even as they’ve disappointed us by their performance—I saw a bit of the drive of these professionals who want to win, but still were grateful that we’ve stuck it out.
Feel free to read the article at the BW here. I’m hoping it provides a balance for fans in supporting the players, but holding leadership accountable as well—not an easy balance to strike. Here are the four main points:
- The players hate losing worse than we hate them losing.
- They appreciate us more for sticking by them even in this ghastly streak.
- When you see how badly these professionals hate losing, your heart goes out to them.
- We need a balance as fans to support the team and players, while keeping the ownership and FO informed and accountable.
P.S. Below is a picture of my daughter with Marlon Hairston. He’s a 20-year-old rookie from the University of Louisville, who I hope will be an integral piece in their rebuilding process moving forward. This picture honestly made our year. What a nice, gracious young man he is!