See how far Sporting Kansas City has come

11/27/2013 5:21 PM

11/27/2013 9:14 PM

Someone ought to check with Chiefs officials to see if Arrowhead is available Dec. 7.

A local sports team that once played there to a smattering of fervent fans might be able to fill much more of the stadium now. Admittedly, this is a fantasy. Not happening.

The MLS championship match between Sporting Kansas City and Real Salt Lake will be across the state line at Sporting Park, despite this week’s foulup with ticket sales. But it would be an interesting test of how far Sporting KC has come to see what the team could do with 60,000 extra seats.

Peel back the frustration and the online screwup is a marker for how far Sporting KC has come and the appreciation for soccer in general has grown.

Now we’re generating nonstop trash talk from rival fans and a rush to evade the rules in hopes of scoring tickets to the crucial match. Once it was difficult to give Wizards tickets away.

Real Salt Lake fans used an online code to access presale tickets that were reserved for Sporting KC season ticket holders, an attempt to snap up more than their share of the 1,000 tickets held for the visiting team. Did Kathleen Sebelius unload some programmers from the Obamacare website onto Ticketmaster?

How the current scenario was not foreseen is a bit of a head-scratcher. But a special code intended for Sporting season ticket holders leaked out across social media. Of course, someone passed it to a friend. And then they told two friends and somewhere in the mix, someone had a friend who is a Salt Lake fan.

The ticket purchases were voided. Ticketmaster has to set things right for Sporting KC’s loyal fans. With more than a week before the game, they undoubtedly will sort things out. Real Salt Lake fans are the ones who will pay — some mightily because they already purchased a flight assuming they’d scored a ticket for the game.

Back in the days when our soccer club still went by the silly name of Wizards and played at Arrowhead, I used to take a preschool nephew there. We’d sit dwarfed in the stands, usually surrounded by empty seats. That nephew is in college now. The team grew up as he did.

Now we are a winning franchise with a packed stadium.

The ticket sale episode emphasizes a basic lesson in sports that Real Salt Lake fans apparently missed. It’s the one learned by all youngsters, even if they are small enough to still be herding the soccer ball rather than skillfully moving it.

Don’t cheat. It won’t end well for your team.

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