Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Timbers fan assaulted before San Jose match

San Jose Hooligans?   The match against the Quakes on Sunday night was a rough one to no one's surprise.  I was a little taken aback that it was Alan Gordon, the former Timber, who ended up being the goat in the game,  but his elbow into Silvestre's face was just as clear as the one a week earlier which took out Valeri.  But then San Jose has always played a physical style in recent years.  What did catch me by surprise was the story of an attack on a Timbers' fan in his car driving to the match.   I've generally been impressed with the ability of the competing fan groups to be vocal rivals without devolving into more physical and thuggish competition,  particularly when there's so much beer involved.   This is the first time in recent years I recall hearing of a scuffle like this in PDX.  It certainly isn't a good sign for Timbers' Army members going south for the return leg next week.   And it seems strange to me in other ways.  The culture and demographics that have been connected to hooliganism since ancient Rome could certainly be found in modern American cities as well.  But are the young counter cultural and hipster fans who make up a chunk of the faces at Jeld-Wen cut from that cloth?   Alienated and angry?  There must be a few in any large group,  but I'm surprised that there might be enough to travel to a distant city and assault a local fan on a public street.  Or perhaps the rise of football here in the states, with its mythology of fan violence, is an attractor to people who would have been American sport fans torching cars in their city after winning a championship in something.   Another phenomenon I don't quite get. 

We'll see.  In the meantime, I'd really like to see the kabosh put on violence where it can be identified and stopped: on the pitch.