I planned to write something about Detroit City FC’s short and long-term future before next season, and I still probably will, but with all the talk about the downtown stadium proposal, I thought now would be a good time to put a few thoughts down.
As I mentioned in my piece, Two Obsessions, I fell in love with the game of soccer in 2006 and waited six years before I had a club to call my own. “City Til I Die” is not just a phrase to me, it is a declaration of passion and loyalty. Detroit City is my club, and will be until it ceases to exist or I do, whichever comes first. This may seem melodramatic, and it even slightly feels that way to me since, in the grand scheme of things, sports are an exceedingly minor and insignificant part of life.
On the other hand, they are also our greatest form of collective experience, and some of the fondest memories of my short life have been made in the past two years at the narrow, bumpy field off of Grand River. I’ve had more fun among a crowd of 1000 than I ever have in Ann Arbor with 110 times as many people. With major teams, you could theoretically go to every home game without seeing the same person twice, but at City games, there are always dozens of faces I recognize, even though I’ve never met most of them.
City’s greatest strength and the main reason for its success is that it is tied to the community. Founded by five men who met through a local league, based in the heart of the city, made up mostly of local talent – this story is not very different from that of Liverpool, Celtic, Manchester United. The difference is those clubs’ stories unfolded over a hundred years ago, and ours has just begun.
It’s very exciting to be in on the ground level of something like this, and I intend to follow it wherever it goes, be it USL-Pro, NASL, MLS, or even just NPSL (although if the current rate of growth continues, I don’t see this as a viable long-term option).
Putting aside all the talk of job creation, revenue generation, and proper use of resources, if, by some chance, a non-DCFC MLS expansion franchise is awarded to Detroit, I will not support it. This isn’t out of bitterness – I would wish the team and its supporters all the best and be happy for them if they were successful.
The simple fact is I already have a club.
Allez Le Rouge
Forevermore Rouge et Or
City Til I Die