American Outlaws Hartford Chapter – Interview

American Outlaws Hartford Chapter Interview

The transcript of our interview with AO Hartford Chapter Treasurer Andy Leary. See the full post here.

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Describe the American Outlaws in 3 sentences.

AL: The American Outlaws [is the] unofficial supporters group of the US National Team, both Men and Women. It’s the part that’s trying to bring the atmosphere to the games and to the next level. It’s similar to Continue reading

The American Outlaws

USA tifo Costa Rica

“Come to an event”.

To cynical and subtle Europeans, nothing is a bigger cringe than American Sports culture. Cheerleaders, half-time shows, a sponsor for absolutely everything. And rows upon rows of adults festooned with a garish and nauseating array of stars and stripes. Flags, face paint, costumes…. the whole culture is so far from European Football tradition, it is easy to convince yourselves that Americans would never be able to “do” Football fanatic properly.

But Andy Leary is prepared with apt retort. “That’s the response. Come to an event and tell me about that after”.

This is the National Team fan group you really should know about.

The American Outlaws Continue reading

The Future Football Superpower

USA tifo Costa Rica

In their masterpiece ‘Soccernomics’, Simon Kuper and Stefan Szymanski try to predict which nation will be the future dominant Football nation. They rank countries based on population size, success, GDP per capita and working-class population size; the metrics they believe contribute toward international success in the sport. Football’s low barriers to entry have made it thrive in cities and countries with large working-class populations. All you need is a ball to play. Thus, in theory, countries with larger blue-collar populations will produce better Footballers and are more likely to be successful.

Their prediction? Turkey. But there is one factor they didn’t take into account. Continue reading

Minneapolis, Twinned with Reykjavik

Minnesota Vikings fans

The 2016 European Cup will be remembered for 4 things; 1) Wales’ emergence as a tournament dark horse, 2) Will Grigg’s reported perpetual state of flammability 3) how boring it was and 4) the Iceland Clap. We should probably extend that to the Icelanders’ amazing support throughout, but “The Clap” was so universally popular it had bookies betting which Premier League fans would be the first to replicate it. That’s not really materialised but the Iceland Clap is now being performed by fans elsewhere (I vividly remember a video posting of a Vietnamese fangroup getting it on post victory).

But it has spread in other ways Continue reading

[Houston Dynamo] Do They Know What Dynamo Means At All?

Teach the Texans. Let them know that they screwed up.

Football fans in countries with nascent Football leagues are very interesting to observe. A lack of existing customs and traditions means that fans can basically develop their Football culture from scratch. The behaviour among fans and people involved in the sport at this point therefore can be very telling about their culture and what they value. The USA’s Major League Soccer is a prime example of such a nascent league.

On the other side of the pond, European Football fans resent the very commercial nature of American sport. The franchise model of ownership and subsequent potential for immediate Continue reading