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A Supporter’s View: The Kansas City Wizards


It’s a good time to be  Kansas City Wizards fan. The Wizards are 2-0, a stadium project is on the way, the team’s new ownership group is spending money (exhibit A: Claudio Lopez) and even the team’s new temporary home is drawing rave reviews among KC fans for the atmosphere.

So pardon Wizards fans for gloating a bit. Not since 2000 have Kansas City fans had this much reason to feel good and things might only get better. With D.C. United and New England facing loaded schedules, the Wizards just might sneak in and take the Eastern Conference.

SBI correspondent Mike Cross is caught up in the euphoria. He was at Community America Ballpark with the rest of the fortunate KC fans who watched Scott Sealy deliver a game-winner and keep the Wizards perfect. here is his take on the festivities ((Feel free to provide your reaction to Mike’s piece in the comments section below):

Believe it KC fans, the Wizards are for real

By Mike Cross

I think a lot of Wizard’s fans spent most of the off season feeling like we were at a party listening to a guy tell a joke and we were the only ones in the room who got it.  We looked around at the various moves the organization was making and thought, you know this stuff might just work!  But everywhere we turned we heard people around the league doubting us.  No matter how confident you were that the team was doing the right things you were left with a seed of doubt in the back of your mind.

One of the moves we liked the most was the one out of Arrowhead Stadium.  Unless you’re Manchester United it’s just too big.  Even at last year’s Galaxy game with somewhere north of 30k in the stadium it still felt more like a wine and cheese party than a sporting event.  Well that’s all changed now, removing one of those doubts.

The move to the CAB (Community America Ballpark) has brought a whole new vibe to going to a game.  The Cauldron has been exceptional and have injected the kind of life into the games that before we’d have to watch an EPL game or go to Toronto to get.  It’s not up to the Standards of Arrowhead (Chiefs) at its best or Kaufman (Royals) back in the day, but it’s a pretty good start.  By the time Hillcrest Road opens up in a couple of years we could have the makings of something pretty special. 

Saturday was no exception for the Cauldron, they got the place rocking and when Trujillo and Sealy waded into the section after goals you get the feeling of a new tradition being born.  Sort of our own Lambeau leap. 

Once again you better not be late getting back to your seat after halftime.  That’s when things really get rocking at the CAB.  It almost seems like the boys wait until there in front of the Cauldron before they turn on the goals.  Just a couple of things I’d like to mention on the game.  What can you say about Jimmy, the captain comes through anyway he has to.  To me though a couple of things really stood out, Marinelli was strong on the ball and brilliant on the set pieces.  He’s starting to show the promise he teased us with last year.  And can I just say Jonathan Leathers is the man.  It may just take a bulldozer to get him out of that right back spot.

My favorite part of the match though came on a comment from Rapids Assistant Coach John Murphy.  My seats are right by the visiting team bench and several of my Wizard fan compatriots were getting on Christian Gomez quite a bit.  To the point that Gomez was wagging his finger at us after every goal as he lead the Rapids back from two goals down to tie the game.  After the second goal Murphy turned to us and said, “He only knows three words of English and unfortunately for you, you’ve used all three.”

Classic!  And great heart shown by Gomez in a losing effort.


  1. I’ve been a little disappointed with the support thus far as well, however some things to remember: 1. The weather for games 1 and 3 was BAD! I was at the game last night and ended up leaving at the 75 minute mark because I was afraid I’d contract hypothermia. The turned away about 1,500 people for the opener. 2. School is still in session which I believe hurt the crowd last night. 3. There are a lot of people that stand up on the councourses and don’t sit much. The Wizards are announcing sellouts, but giving away a lot of tickets. How does that work?

    Regardless, once the weather improves, I believe the place will be packed. Honestly, we should’ve won last night. I can’t believe how many close shots we got and just flat out missed. At any rate, the product on the field is excellent and we are playing an exciting brand of football. Let’s turn this around against Houston Saturday. (Bundle up, it’s going to be COLD!!!)

  2. The Wiz look strong as a team…but the support…is pish. You couldn’t even draw 10 grand for your 2nd game???!!! How are you seriously going to survive when the salary cap rises?

  3. Hey kpugs, you may not mean to be a jerk but you certainly do a fine job impersonating one. I admit I’m not the greatest speller in the world I’ve come to rely on spell check and grammar check to do that for me. Neither of which seem to have a problem with my article. So you’re either not a very good speller yourself or some sort of jerk. I leave it to you to identify yourself if you haven’t already. As for only one paragraph covering the match, you can get match reports all over the place. That’s not what I or most of the other writers are going for. Ives asked us to provide a fan’s eye perspective of the team from week to week. If you don’t like my articles it’s real simple. Don’t read them.

  4. I thought Leathers was really shaky for the first 15 of the DC game, but all rookies will have their slip ups. He seems a good one for the future.

  5. I don’t want to be a jerk, so I want to say I applaud the enthusiam this post is oozing. I honestly get the feeling that this is coming from a true fan.

    But 6 paragraphs with only one (sort of) covering the match, spelling and grammatical errors, etc. I am no writer myself…this guy is a true Wizards fan. Just hope these get a little bit better as the season moveson.

  6. Myers is going to need to earn it if there is any justice. Leathers has been simply outstanding. He hasn’t backed off anyone. Just ask Fred who got so frustrated with him he was throwing elbows at him right and left, and he showed some brass late in the Colorado game chesting down a cross in the box. It was one of those small but important things and Leathers has done all of those extremely well.

  7. I am impressed with KC this season, but disappointed with the supporters. How can an MLS team not sell out a 10000 seat stadium. Terrible and sad.

    Bitter Portland Timber fan

  8. kco said it. that was one of the best lines I’ve read. ever. good work. the conversation-style writing was very good. and who knew kc would play like this early in the season?

  9. Hey guys. Brendan, the Cauldron is within about 15 feet of the Stadiums West goal as it is configured and the first row of the section comes down to almost field level. It’s very close as you can see from some of the video of the players leaping into the section.

    Going into the first game the Wizards had five guys hurt, Myers, Espinoza, Arnaud, McMahen, Watson. The most significant at this time are of course the first three. Based on media reports Myers will probably be available for the game tomorrow. Espinoza might be available but I’d be surprised if he would be used without seeing some reserve action first. The biggest question is still Arnaud. He had micro fracture surgery in the off-season. He has been training but not doing much that might get him into contact situations. Just as a guess I wouldn’t look for him before the first or second game of the upcoming road trip. Hope that helps

  10. Nice job Mike. I’m very happy to see the Wizards finding a good home until their new one opens. How close is the Cauldron to the field? In the video highlights, it looks very close. Will you keep tabs on injury progress? I’ve got a couple players on my fantasy team. Good luck on the new season.

  11. I knew the CAB was going to be a great place for soccer. Can’t wait for the new stadium it will take the Wizards to the next level.

  12. Great first installment Mike. Sounds like you got a great seat one yard off the pitch. Look forward to more commentary like this.

    “It may just take a bulldozer to get him out of that right back spot.”

    Wizards will need to shore up the defense a little bit. Can’t be allowing the ball to sit in the box for 3 seconds with our backs on the grass. Time for a clean sheet against the Revs.

    C’Mon Wizards!


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