Rave Green Turn out Twice as Big as Expected
Sounders FC may have suffered a 2-0 reverse on the pitch at the Home Depot on Saturday, but off the pitch there was a success story for the Seattle franchise.
The SoCal Sound or the “Sounderators” were somewhat hastily put together because of the earliness of the first Los Angeles game in the schedule. Nevertheless, through the power of the internet and great organisation, they managed to pull in more than twice the number of Sounders fans as they had even dared to imagine.
Organiser Brady Miller takes up the story, “The idea for getting a group together for this game came out of the ECS (weareecs.com) forums where Simon had made a post asking if any ECS members were in Southern California. I answered that I lived in LA and was interested in going with other fans to the games here. After some hemming and hawing about what we should do to get tickets together, I just called the group sales rep and asked what our options were. She kindly set aside 50 tickets for us and allowed us to call in to make individual purchases from her.
I was worried at first that we’d even get to 20, as sales were slow to pick up and she had already granted us the group discount for 20+. I posted and posted on every sounders message board I could find to get people to this game, and we ended up with about 70-80 people there. We chipped in and bought a bass drum on craigslist to add some extra kick to our section, and had songsheets made up before the game.”
Other Fans and Club GM Recognise “Sounderators”
Their effect was felt all the way back in Seattle. At the main ECS and Sounders Meet Up Group viewing party at the Hawk’s Nest, a huge cheer went up every time the sizable Sounders away support came on the screen. But it wasn’t only other Seattle fans who paid tribute to the turnout.
Club GM Adrian Hanauer said, “The turnout of Sounders FC supporters at Chivas USA was impressive, especially considering the thousand-mile distance some of them traveled. I scanned the crowd and saw not only 60-70 organized supporters in the corner, but also other groups of fans wearing their rave green jerseys scattered throughout the stadium. Prior to the game I visited with members of the largest group and, on behalf of the team, expressed our appreciation for their show of support. Itâ€™s a great start.”Brady was also quick to pay tribute to and thank the Chivas supporters who made them feel welcome in traditional Guadalajara style, “We accepted an invite from the Chivas USA supporter group Union Ultras to join them for pre-game barbecue with sausages, three kinds of homemade salsa and homemade guacamole. They were excellent hosts to us, very welcoming and excited that we had brought such a large group. We emphasized the camaraderie before and after the game -but inside the stadium, each of us was going to do our best to (loudly!) support our respective teams.”
There will be Sounders supporters sections for all future games in LA, and that information can be found on ECS forum under the Match Day section. This includes the June 6 game against Chivas USA and the August 15 match against Galaxy.
They have 60 and 84 seats reserved for those games, respectively. Unfortunately the August game has a deadline to get tickets of May 15 – it is David Beckham’s 1st MLS game back in LA, and as of now, 19 of those seats have already been sold. A SocalSound website is in the works.
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