1. It’s our contribution to soccer culture
As the most popular sport by far in nearly the entire world, soccer is the rare game where we as Americans don’t more or less define the culture around it. Sports like (gridiron) football – and to a lesser extent, baseball – have pretty limited fan bases in most countries, and how we watch, support, and participate becomes synonymous with the game itself.
Tailgating is one of those uniquely American experiences. European stadiums are often located in city neighborhoods and other areas with limited space and an emphasis on public transit – so they tend to lack giant parking lots. Though plenty of fans flock to nearby bars, tailgating in the American sense is rarely an option, and even more rarely done.
2 The sport embraces it
A quick online search is all you need to find dozens of MLS teams detailing their home-game tailgating policies. You’ll be in the good company of likeminded fans and supported by the facilities managers – so no worries, just kick back with the grill and a beverage or four, and expect a loud, excited atmosphere full of club chants.
3 It’s evolving fast
With soccer’s national popularity on the upswing in the last few years – and at an all-time peak following the recent 2014 World Cup – it’s a great time to get involved with a rapidly evolving tailgating culture. Football tailgating boasts a history going back over 140 years, and has changed substantially since the earliest days – who knows what the future holds for soccer? You could be there to help shape it.
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