Tomorrow is a must win game for Kansas City, and not just because they need to start picking up points in the league standings and pull themselves out of last place. There are many other reasons why tomorrow is a must win. The game tomorrow against the Chicago Fire is probably the 4th most important game of Sporting KC Wiz(ards) history after the 3 finals that KC has been to. From the hype, to morale, to the general fans, and even to the front office, players and Peter Vermes, this is a must win.
I don't want to say that this is a moment that KC fans have been waiting for since June 5, 1995 when the team was announced as a franchise. Mainly because fans and ownership groups had no clue how important a soccer specific stadium would be at the time. But it's a moment KC fans have been waiting for, for a long time, especially since Lamar Hunt put the team up for sale after the 2004 season. These things combine to make this a must win for the fans. While the stadium is great and I haven't heard a negative thing about the stadium really, giving a positive view of the opener is imperative. My greatest worry is a repeat of the 7-0 July 4, 2001 game against Chicago. That will certainly sour a lot of fans to the new stadium. So giving a positive reflection of the day and the opening is certainly needed.
Continuing with the fans, and including the players, this result is a must win because it will help to boost the morale of both fans and players. After the long 10 game road trip, and the current 9 game winless streak, morale for the fans is low, as I'm sure it is for the players. But the excitement of the new stadium has been showing through on all sides. But when the team takes the field many will remember that we are still at the foot of the Eastern Conference and haven't won since opening day of the season. To boost morale going forward for both team and players getting a win tomorrow is a must. The win in the Open Cup qualifier was nice and the two road draws help, but nothing like a home win can help boost morale.
For the front office, this is a must win. The team has been on a 10 game road trip and hasn't performed to the expectations of many fans. With a back loaded home schedule, KC needs to get a win to help the front office, especially the ticket reps. It's going to get hard to sell tickets to this new stadium if KC continues to struggle to win games. KC, like many towns around the US, as a LOT of fair weather fans who will come out and see the team when they are winning, but totally ignore them if they are losing. A win against Chicago, ending this long winless run is an absolute must for the front office to get the spin going in the right direction. I'm sure for future advertising they'd also like to point back to this game in those adverts with a positive view and the best way to do that is to go out and win games.
This is probably a must win for Peter Vermes as well. While this game won't be the one that loses him his job (unless it's a repeat of the previously mentioned July 4, 2001 game), this is one he needs to win to help keep some pressure off. He will get at least a few home games to try to turn things around, but he needs to get things started right, and that means a win against the team right above them in the table. A win tomorrow would put the Wizards 11 point behind the Fire with two games in hand still on the Chicago club. So a win pulls us towards getting out of the cellar.
For me, all these reasons (and more small ones) are why I feel tomorrow is a must win. For me it is specifically because I want a great memory of the game. I love the stadium and how great it looks, but I want the team to give me a great memory of the stadium's opener. I'd love for that memory to be us turning around that 7-0 loss against the Fire. Not that I think that will really happen, but I'd certainly like it to be the result tomorrow night. 7-0 to the KC Wiz has a nice ring to it chant wise. But really I'd just like to win by 2 clear goals tomorrow.