The Sounders and The Fury
If you think Major League Soccer fans are any less fierce and aggressive than Europe’s notorious soccer hooligans, try life as a die-hard Seattle Sounders fanatic relocated to Portland Timbers country.
Illustration by Sloane Leong
My Portland office cubicle holds what may be the largest collection of Seattle Sounders paraphernalia gathered within the Oregon state boundaries. Ticket stubs, game day programs, the sports section of The Seattle Times declaring this year’s smashing 3-0 season opener victory against the New England Revolution. The newer soccer fans in the office walk by briskly, while the more senior members have already learned the best routes of avoidance. They’re all fans of the Portland Timbers — my Sounders’ most-despised rival — and we have an unspoken understanding of mutual mouth-shuttage. Nobody wants to get fired.
The less savvy residents of Portland are aware that this whole soccer deal is kind of a thing (MLS game attendance has tripled across the country in the last decade, and stadium sellouts in Seattle and Portland are commonplace), but are ignorant to the tectonic plates of hatred that divide my bright, key lime Pantone 370C green from the Timbers’ dank, mo…