Phoenix Rising FC. That would be the new name of our club. My club. I remember sitting there and staring at the badge as it was announced on Twitter.
It’s different. Not just from the USL teams, but a crest unlike any other that we’ve had here in Arizona. It has something unique. “I like it!” I finally said out loud. I was all in.
What a relief, because I could never really get on board with “Arizona United”. For starters it had “United” at the tail end, like a half-hearted, Hail Mary attempt to catch or create fans. It sounded like we were in Europe, and anyone who knew world football or soccer in our city felt the same way.
Still, I did what many other fans did: I supported Arizona United anyway. I went to the games, bought the hotdogs, and tuned in to Youtube to watch the games.
In the meantime I searched for supplemental clubs to attach my passion. I still had a lot to give as a fan that I just couldn’t give to Arizona at the time.
So I turned to Orlando City (I had lived in Orlando briefly during college), and I made sure to catch their matches. I also began supporting Tottenham, and wore my Spurs jersey with confidence because it gave me a real soccer flag I felt proud to support (even though I had never been to North London).
Today, things are different. I think every fan of Phoenix soccer feels different, and it couldn’t have come at a better time. Soon we’ll have a stadium that is our own, where I can take my family and we can enjoy the world’s game – the right way.
I’m thrilled about the prospect of the future and what it will bring. I even went as far as starting my own supporters group: Feather and Fire. So far it’s only me and my daughter, but we have big plans. I think soon we can get my wife to join.