Seeing the stadium again on Sunday was like seeing that old friend that you shared good and bad times with but didn't keep in contact with for a while since you were kind of busy with other things. The fresh new season atmosphere meshing with the familiarity of the drums, fireworks, and intoxicating Cinnabon scent. The one thing that was not familiar though was the tarp covering up the south end. That gave off a sort of...dare I say...a Chivas-esque vibe. shudders
The Tarp. Not Pretty.
With construction of the US Soccer Hall of Fame beginning, a gigantic tarp (see picture above) was laid over the entirety of the south end. Although, it didn't look like any construction had actually started. It seemed like they could have opened the south end up for opening day at least. The tarp also caused El Matador to move to where the old Inferno used to be. The kits bearing a faint resemblance to those old Burn jerseys, and a supporters group returning to the old Inferno section? Queue the bearded Robin Williams picture of him captioned saying "What year is it?!".
One positive the tarp brought though is that it consolidated the crowd. The consolidation really seemed to help chant and cheers become more infectious than before with the less dense crowds of old. El Matador would start an FC Dallas chant, and the response was much louder than in previous years. I'm chalking that up to crowd consolidation with a little help from the exciting way the team was playing this afternoon. Either way, if anyone is looking for a positive in regards to the tarp, that's one I liked.
The Chemistry. The Beauty!
Wow. If this is Papi's vision then I am thoroughly ready for more. Free flowing, fast moving and hard hitting attack after attack had the crowd 'oooing' and 'ahhing' seemingly on every attack. If the finishing had not been so poor we would've been up by at least four! Especially after that mysterious call in the box that saw Mauro Diaz's excellent strike inside the box disallowed. It seemed like they called a hand ball that the whole crowd did not realize as they erupted into cheering. The cheering quickly turned into boos as the Philadelphia goalkeeper proceeded to take the free kick sending the ball back into play with a 0-0 scoreline for the time being.
Finally, your fan quote of the day: "Que bonita la jugada hoy, preciosa." - Older gentleman loving the way our passing was coming off. I gotta agree, it was a thing of beauty to watch at times.
Let's hear the opinions on the tarp! Anyone else think they probably could have opened it up for opening day? Anyone else entranced by the cool and efficient passing that red team was putting out there? Who else got a big whiff of that Cinnabon scent? Let me know in the comments below!