Hi there, my name’s Matt and I moved to the Emerald City back in 2015. I hail from London and as you probably could have guessed, I’m a football fan.
Football is just as loved in England as American Football is here in the United States. There’s nothing quite like the passion you exhibit for your team; you’ll fight for them, cry for them, and stay out all night celebrating their victories knowing full well you’ve got a meeting in the morning.
Despite growing up in London, I was born into a Manchester United family. As a result, I didn’t experience the same connection between club and city that many of my Arsenal or Tottenham friends did. However, nothing beats rooting for a team alongside your family and sharing in that bond.
From Football to Soccer
Since my move, I’ve spent a fair amount of time educating people that ask me if I watch soccer. “Football” I always reply, which usually gets a chuckle. Ultimately however, we love the same sport and it’s wonderful to see that Americans have made room in their hearts for soccer.
Although Eddie Murphy and I may have had very different experiences when “Coming to America,” we certainly both had to deal with the time difference. London is 8 hours ahead of Seattle, meaning that if I wanted to watch an afternoon game kicking off at 12:30 pm London time then I’d have to be up at 4:30 am Seattle time. If I was King of Zamunda I could just have a servant wake me gently with a lovely cup of tea. Alas, I am not royalty and had to set an army of alarms to see my mighty Red Devils week in week out.
Why the Seattle Sounders?
After a few months, I thought I’d try out the MLS given its more reasonable start times. A few days later I’m at home watching my first Seattle Sounders game…
Hold Up! Obafemi Martins & Clint Dempsey are now playing for the Sounders? This makes things more interesting - two names that immediately stand out due to their stints in the Premier League. Clint Dempsey is a born leader and Premier League veteran while Obafemi Martins is one of the most exciting players anywhere. This is a team I can get excited about watching.
The next week my wife and I head down to our first game. The atmosphere inside the stadium was electric, alive and buzzing, Seattle has the most passionate fans I have ever come across. Getting to experience the powerful connection that the team has with the city has been incredible and I feel blessed to have discovered the Sounders community.
5 years later and I’ve been on board for the highs of the 2016 & 2019 championship titles as well as the downs and the tough playoff exits. I feel like the Sounders have become my team and I plan to be here well into the future.