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We Ride This Sporting KC Roller Coaster Together

Another Sporting Kansas City season has come to an end. We rode the ride together and there are plenty more rides to come.



Daniel Salloi and Gadi Kinda celebrate Salloi's goal vs St. Louis. | Credit: Thad Bell

According to an online dictionary, a roller coaster of emotions is a situation or experience that alternates between making you feel sad, disappointed and desperate to making you feel excited, exhilarated or happy. Another season has come and gone, and boy was this one a true roller coaster of emotions. Being a fan of a team means that we all know that only one fanbase will be happy and celebrating at the end of it all. So, we know that this end of the season disappointment is more likely to come than not. But it still sucks. 

This season was one of the most topsy-turvy roller coaster emotions of a year for Sporting Kansas City or any other team. We don’t need to keep being reminded of the first ten games of the season, but we all remember them. From February to May, there was nothing about this team that felt good. We were all in that state of sadness together. Some of us were very vocal about that sadness. Some of us chose to try to be the eternal cheerleader (that’s me…I’m that some of us) and just try to find something positive to cling to. 

Sporting KC, Johnny Russell

Credit: Thad Bell

We went through that sadness and disappointment. The excitement and happiness. We got all the way to Decision Day in October. Together we were able to again find that common emotion of seeing this team do something that had never been done before. We were there with them as we watched San Jose draw, so we got to hang out together at CMP at least one more time.

We were all there feeling that nervousness of a penalty kick shootout against San Jose secretly knowing that Tim Melia would come through for us. We felt the deflation together when Pulido missed his PK. Then the quiet confidence of Tim Melia stopped those San Jose attempts. Of course, he did and we got back up together. We got to celebrate together when Daniel Salloi put that winning PK in the back of the net. 

Sporting KC, Tim Melia, Daniel Salloi, San Jose Earthquakes

Credit: Thad Bell

We watched as the boys went to St. Louis on a cold rainy late night at the end of October. We got to just feel joy together as SKC just demolished St. Louis City. Golazo after golazo after golazo after golazo.  

We were together in Kansas City on a beautiful November Sunday afternoon. We were screaming together when Logan Ndenbe scored in front of the Cauldron. 

Then when Daniel Salloi did it in front of the South Stand, we were screaming together again. We were able together to send St. Louis home and out of the playoffs while we got to keep going through it all together. 

This team brings me, and I know a lot of you, a ton of joy from February/March to October/November every year. Sure, there are a lot of you that like to complain about every little thing, but even in the down times being a part of something is important to us all. Being a fan means that through the good and the bad, the quarrels and anger, the elation and celebration there are always so many people right there with you feeling those same feelings. 

And now we get to all feel this let down together. Maybe it’s even a bit of grief. We had allowed ourselves to feel like maybe this year we would be the one fanbase left standing at the end. The one that got to experience the ultimate celebration together. But for whatever reason we aren’t. Maybe it was the 21 days that left the team out of rhythm. Maybe it was the missed handball call or the other opportunities to score that just didn’t go in the back of the net. Whatever the reason, we are all still here together in our feelings as a fanbase. We get to feel a little sad together and grieve a little bit for what could have been in this Cinderella fairy tale story of a season. 

But we only get to feel that sadness and grief for a little while because now together we all move on. We say goodbye to this roller coaster of a season. We will have to say goodbye to some players. Some we want to see go and some we don’t.

Then we all get to feel excited together! We get to start talking about what the plan will be for next year. What new players do we need? Who needs to go? What will change and what will all inevitably stay the same? 

That’s the thing about being a really hardcore fan of a team. We go through it. Together. We go through the worst part together. We grieve the end of the season together. But the end of the season is also where a new dream begins. Maybe 2023 wasn’t our year, but now we start dreaming about 2024. Together!

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