While soccer is a relatively new professional sport in the area, it seems like Orlando sport fanatics have been longing for something to be a part of. Orlando City Soccer Club had sold over 13,000 season tickets before even playing its first match, and in its first season, it sold out all season tickets available. Two primary active supporter groups formed during Orlando City SC’s time in the USL and have continued their support for Orlando City SC during their transition to the MLS: The Ruckus and The Iron Lion Firm, which combine on game days to form what is called in Orlando as “The Wall.” The purpose of The Wall is to “create stronger camaraderie and cooperation between supporter clubs in a coordinated attempt to create the loudest, most creative, most passionate, and visually stunning sporting experience in North American soccer,” according to the Orlando City Soccer Club website.
Supporter clubs find purpose during a game by “creating the intimidating raucous atmosphere that makes the stadium a fortress that opposition teams fear to visit.” These clubs want its members to feel like they’re all part of a huge family, along with standing behind the goal and singing out to their “boys in purple.”
In order to become a recognized supporter club, the group must meet the following criteria:
- Have at least 50 season ticket members committed to join the group
- Have a formal process for electing a minimum of five leaders within the group
- Uphold and enforce the Fan Code of Conduct within the group
After becoming a recognized supporter club, members will have the following privileges awarded to them:
- Ability to use flags and tifos
- Ability to use drums and/or instruments
- Ability to use controlled smoke
- Representation on the Fan Advisory Council
Now that Orlando Pride is preparing for their inaugural season, the women’s team has welcomed its first organized supporter club called The Crown. The Crown will focus on supporting and promoting Orlando Pride, while creating the loudest, most creative, and passionate supporter experience in women’s soccer. The Crown’s home base will be Graffiti Junktion in Oviedo, Florida, where they will host game-watching parties and other events related to the Supporter Club. New members who want to join The Crown will need to pay $25 for the membership fee and will receive an exclusive scarf.
QueensCast is thrilled to see so much dedication to our city’s soccer clubs, and we’re excited to see how the supporter culture evolves in the upcoming seasons for both Orlando City SC and Orlando Pride.