How I became a New York City FC Fan

Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

As I sit down on this M train ride home from work, I recall the day I became a die-hard NYCFC fan. So, boom! Check it:

My birthday is June 28 (in case anyone wants to say Happy 25th B-Day in a few weeks) and my friend Alex sends me a text saying he's taking me to a soccer game. Now, I'll admit I was not an avid football fan; however, I did pay attention to the sport, mainly due to the 2014 World cup. He tells me they're 400-level seats (yeah, in 2015, we were allowed up there.. cool, right?) for a Redbulls vs NYCFC match. I had no clue what an "NYCFC" was, so I said hey, why not... and Hey, why not was the right attitude! If you want to be thrown into the MLS scene, "hey, why not" attend a match where a rivalry sparked the moment the 2nd team claimed the greatest city in the World? Plus.. A Hudson Derby on YOUR birthday??? No Brainer!

Alex and I arrive at the game, and witnessed an atmosphere that was indescribable! The chants! The scarfs held up with pride! The BEER! I think the last time I fell in love THIS hard, was sophomore year of high school with my then-sweetheart. (Its been awhile..) We lost that game, yet, won an affection for a team that plays in our backyard and embodies the true grit & grind of the melting pot we call "the Big Apple." Los Celestes!

What truly resonates with me about my first NYCFC game is witnessing the animosity and rivalry that the fans of the Boys in Blue had for the New Jersey Red bulls (Okay, i'll be nice..) I mean, New York Red bulls. The back & forth banter and bird-flipping was remarkable! Never have I seen a party of two unanimously hate each other, since the time I was 9 and saw "Small Soldiers". I truly love the ugly side of the beautiful sport. It is that euphoric feeling I get every single game I scan my ticket and raise my sky blue scarf, that made me a fan. The excitement I get when David Villa nets a world-class golazo, or that long sigh of relief from a bail-out wonder save from Sean Johnson. Endorphins.. Engage!

This team taught me to learn, and most importantly, respect the sport. I was never a football fan, and now I can't get enough of La Liga, EPL, Bundesliga, Liga MX, etc. etc. I wear my NYCFC kits with pride, even when there is no game. Not because you care; but because I need YOU to know that it will always be: New York City Football Club for life.

& truth be told... I need YOU to feel this, too.

#ItHappenedWithoutWarning #AMDS

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