By all accounts, Detroit City FC’s international friendly with FC United of Manchester was a massive success. 6,245 fans and supporters from the U.S. and U.K. flocked to Keyworth Stadium to see a great showing of the beautiful game, one that ended in a 3-3 draw. Detroit City FC supporters, especially the Northern Guard, put on an impressive display of unending chants, smoke, and passion for their club.
The visiting team was quite pleased with the event.
“It’s been a great experience,” FC United midfielder Scott Kay commented. “They’ve treated us like royalty. It’s a great city, amazing people. We are very grateful for them having us over.”
Fellow FC United midfielder Thomas Brown agreed.
“The fans were incredible. It was a brilliant experience to come over and play. To be fair, the quality of play was better than we expected. It was a tough game. It was very hard to play in this heat. They gave us a good game.”
The home side was equally impressed.
“This means a lot,” former DCFC captain and current assistant coach Josh Rogers added. “It was a culmination of what the owners have built and what our supporters have built. I know that FC United of Manchester took a liking to us because we are very much like they are: supporter-built, supporter-owned. To play in this game and in this atmosphere is pretty incredible.”
Rogers said that the club has gone a long way in his four-plus years of involvement.
“It’s pretty incredible. The first game back in 2012, we didn’t expect many people to show up. There were 1,200 people. Since then we have had a steady increase each and every year. To get almost 7,000 today and 7,400 for their home opener, it’s pretty incredible to grow a club like this. It’s been an incredible meteoric rise.”
This weekend’s match was an impressive start to a “summer of soccer,” bringing two teams that are thousands of miles away together to celebrate their supporters and the concept of community-based soccer.