A lot of the luster for the Olympic Qualifiers this weekend in KC wore off on Monday night, when the US drew 3-3 with El Salvador, knocking the Americans out of the tournament before they even got to Kansas City. Instead this weekend in KC we're going to see Mexico, Canada, El Salvador, and Honduras take the field in the semifinals on Saturday with the winners of those games meeting on Monday night.
Since the USA's exit I've seen a massive influx of people willing and wanting to dump their tickets that they've already purchased. I know that many of my friends are in this group, deciding instead to spend the weekend doing other things, including watching the Final 4 with KU since the US is out. Since I couldn't care less about KU, or college basketball in general, I personally still plan on being out there on Saturday, and I plan on having a good time.
Here's why I'm still planning to be out at Livestrong Sporting Park on Saturday (and probably Monday). Very rarely any more do I go to a game, sit, watch, and enjoy myself. Any more when I attend games they are Sporting KC games. And while I stand, sing, and enjoy myself at those games, they're not always the most relaxing experience in my life. I spend a lot of time over analyzing stuff that the players do on the field. Not to mention the anxiety of it being my team and always having that nagging feeling (no matter how well KC is playing) that we'll lose the game.
I'm looking forward to going to the games still hanging out with some people I know, and not having a care in the world about the teams on the field. Just going to a game and enjoying watching the game in person. The last time I did that was probably last year's Gold Cup game between Canada and Panama, and even that wasn't without some stress, especially since Canada led until late, and if the Canadians had held on and the US beat Guadeloupe, the US would have won the group. Before that, the last game I just went and watched was the Club America vs Chivas game at Arrowhead a few years back. Before that it was Charlton Athletic vs Aston Villa at The Valley back in 2004, so very rarely do I go and just watch games.
I'm going to enjoy getting out to Livestrong Sporting Park, maybe bringing a grill, cooking some food, having a beer, then going inside, finding a nice shady spot in the Members Stand, take a seat and enjoy some soccer. If you're still planning on going, feel free to join me. We can mock the other teams and commiserate the USA's exit while we watch.