The Most Important Thing Each Fan Should Do…

…Before Heading to Q2 Stadium on Matchday!


Gringo Translation: “We won!”

This is what I usually shout to my wife when I get home from an Austin FC win.  

Her response is something like: “we?” or “you played?” And I respond with an unappreciative grunt.

Ironically, her quips are a futile attempt to poke fun at a fundamental core belief planted in my soul by her Mexican paisanos 20 years ago. (This is a core belief that I know every VHLM-level support holds true).

I know exactly when it became real to me: July 27, 2003. 

The setting was Estadio Azteca. The moment was during extra time of one of the most thrilling 0-0 matches that I have ever witnessed. The protagonists were the Mexican National Team and an invited sub-23 Brazil squad, featuring Kaká.

It was the Final. The Gold Cup trophy sat by the sideline, waiting to be claimed. 85,000 Mexicans (it felt like 100,000) were there to bear witness to history.

The key rule of the tournament that year was the “golden goal” rule.  So extra time began knowing that the first team to score would secure victory for their nation. But summer temperatures, mixed with Mexico City smog, were taking their toll on both teams—their strength was waning and the pace of the game was grinding to a slog.

That’s when the “Mexican Giant” awoke in one booming voice.  

Everyone there began to chant: “Si Se Puede… ! Si Se Puede!” (in Gringoese that means “You can do it”)

Louder and LOUDER, our voices joined in perfect solidarity. As we shouted our lungs out, La Seleccion’s passes got crisper. And their runs got faster.  Even their tackles were more committed. You could see their resolve grow stronger, and the belief that they would overcome mighty Brazil grew in their hearts. 

And that’s when Daniel Osorno got the ball with acres of space on the right wing. He cut back inside and split three defenders and bulged the back of the net with a lethal left-footed strike!  Game over. Queue the pachanga and pandemonium! (see video at 12:00)

The boys in tricolor crowned themselves in glory, and each and every one of us in the stands that day left the Azteca knowing that our collective voice created an updraft that was the wind upon which those Mexican eagles soared to victory.

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What I want you to do ahead of Matchday?

Your homework.

Wait, why would homework be required to attend a pro sports game in the US of A? Because real soccer “fans” aren’t just consumers—they are participants.

Q2 Stadium has come close to the goose-bumpy vibes I felt at the Azteca in 2003, but most of the time it’s in the celebratory moments.  You can hear it in the “M-V-P” chants and the “Alright, Alright, Alright” post-goal singing in the smokey-green haze.

But for Q2 to turn into a true fortress, a real monster that makes our opponents tremble like they do in the Azteca (a place where the US has only won once in 12 tries) we will have to take it to another level.

Each of us has to dig deeper to let our boys hear our belief in those moments when they’re struggling or doubting.  If we transcend superficial consumerism and see the vital role we can play in the drama unfolding on the pitch…we’ll exercise our true power to strengthen the men in Verde in the heat of the battle.

You’ll be able to see the difference: everyone standing, eyes glued to the pitch. You’ll see just as many flashlights swaying in the stands when we sing “McKalla,” no matter what the scoreline is.

So your homework, dear reader, is to download the pdf on La Murga de Austin Website and learn the words to as many of the Austin FC songs as you can. 

Extra credit goes to those who get on La Murga’s Spotify and learn the melodies!

If I haven’t made a compelling argument thus far, then do the work for the sake of encouraging this beautiful heart when coming to Q2:

What’s at stake?

Our team has 4 competitions to battle in, with 6 trophies on the line this year.  Now is not the time to grow self-satisfied or complacent with our “MLS’s longest active sell-out streak” claim to fame. We need to bring our own fight to the stadium, in the same way we expect the players to bleed verde on the pitch.  

Imagine if we were at our loudest and proudest even when the scoreboard says we’re losing!  What a fortress we’d be helping to create during each match?!

We must dig deep and will our boys to victory—even in the darkest moments of this season- as they fight for the colors of our beloved city, Austin.

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