What's All the Fuss About?

This week was an exciting one for fans of FC Cincinnati.  We, probably, saw the end of the stadium drama surrounding the team’s MLS bid.  MLS, probably, voted to accept the team into the top flight of American soccer. And everyone found out the team’s new name would be Fussball Club Cincinnati.  Well, they learned that one for the second time, with the first hint being back in November of 2017.  Or was it back in 2016?  Either way, Twitter had a meltdown, insecure american fans showed their insecurities, and Cincinnati was able to make fun of itself better than anyone else did

 "Guys, the crown is a soccer ball. It's genius"! 

"Guys, the crown is a soccer ball. It's genius"! 

Well, this is a supporter's blog, and our team's name will be changing.  Someone should probably write about that no? Well here's your blazing hot take: I don't really care. 

Look, if I was given power to name the team we'd end up with something like Queen City Soccer Club or Queen City Rangers because I'm unimaginative and think mascot based names are dumb.  I know they're "American" but so are colleges and universities that developed nicknames all on their own. You think the name "Bearcats" was focus grouped and selected? Nah, they picked up the name from a player that had stopped playing for the school for a few years.  NYCFC, an incredibly boring name, has allowed for the rise of the nickname "the pigeons" for the team because, what else was a team from New York going to call themselves?  To declare yourself the "Riverhounds" or something like that (just as an example, obviously nobody would name a team that poorly) just sucks all of the fun and potential history out of the team. 

So, since I can't and shouldn't name the team, I guess the owners of the team can.  And in their first attempt they went with "Futbol Club Cincinnati".  Dumb. Objectively dumb.  From the people who were paid actual real money for this cringe-inducing video, we had a USL team that was very clearly lacking someone who knew soccer on their team. And they went with the Spanish spelling of a word we don't use when talking about soccer.  Sounds about right. 

And yet, this hapless attempt at branding and marketing produced the best lower division club the United States has ever seen. Boom, roasted Cosmos. Passionate fans that show up in droves, record breaking merchandise sales, and one of the best runs in the Open Cup from a non-MLS team in nearly a decade.  All with a dumb name.  And nobody cared. Because why should they?  The name is completely secondary to what the club has become. 

So now the move to MLS looms.  And with it the club is going to change its dumb name to.... another dumb name.  And this is news?  People are upset about this? Or offended by this? It's 2018 and social media is a thing, of course they were. I'm offended at them being offended, so it's all a vicious circle I suppose.

Look, FC Cincinnati has a hard enough time not going by "FC" here in town.  Nobody calls it Futbol Club unless they're making fun of it, which they should.  And now American soccer fans are upset we're taking a dumb name to MLS?  C'mon. 

At least we didn't name the team after a tragedy that killed hundreds of people.  At least we didn't buy the rights to an older team to pretend we have history.  At least we aren't just a billboard for an energy drink.  At least we didn't do a knockoff version of Real Madrid.  Or a knockoff of Real Madrid's nickname, "galacticos".  At least we didn't name our team after a parent team.  And thank god we aren't Columbus. 

 If a European makes fun of our name, remember this is a real team that is actually pretty good and competes in the Champions League regularly.  

If a European makes fun of our name, remember this is a real team that is actually pretty good and competes in the Champions League regularly.  

So the team went from a dumb name to a name that, while also being dumb, at least attempts to connect with the city.  Some Cincinnatians are obsessed with being German.  Like, unhealthy levels of obsession with a nationality.  Despite 44% of the city's population being black and less than 50% of the city being white, people will still claim that 50% of Cincinnati is German.  However you cannot deny the impact German culture has had on the city of Cincinnati.  A classic "Cincinnati-ism" is to say "Please?" when you mean "Pardon?" or "I didn't hear you", a tradition that comes from the German word "Bitte?" which works in both contexts. German culture has made an impact on our city in a number of different ways.  We also like beer, unlike every other city on earth. Like, literally, we might be the only city in the United States that even drinks the stuff.  In fact I heard once that Cincinnati invented beer. So we got that over whatever lame town you come from. 

 We have a plaque so you know it's real.  Also, yes those are hairless nuts at the top.

We have a plaque so you know it's real.  Also, yes those are hairless nuts at the top.

So if someone wants to make fun our club's name, let them.  It'll be the only thing they can dog us for.  It can't be for anything else, because when it comes to the best team in the American lower divisions, we are the gold standard.  It would be really embarrassing to be going to MLS and have to be compared to us

In the meantime, Cincinnati is going to continue to do what it has been doing for three years: exceeding everyone's expectations and building a club on the shoulders of fans and supporters that continue to propel the team to previously unbelievable heights. 

Welcome to the fussing show. 

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Kevin Wallace

OpinionKevin Wallace