Ninety Minutes Hate Part Two: Canada Remembers You, Teal

BOOOOOOOOO. (Not you, Jay.)

This will not be a long article. Merely a brief injunction: tonight, we boo Teal Bunbury.

You'll recall I wrote an almost identical article before our home game against Sporting Kansas City last year. I shall quote liberally:

Teal Bunbury is the Canadian-born forward for Kansas City, son of our joint all-time leading international scorer Alex Bunbury. A boy who, having made two appearances for the Canadian U-20 team, consumed our money and our time, and lied to both Canadian soccer officials and the public at large about his intentions, decided to jump ship to play for the United States national team last year.

[. . .]

This is Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and when Bunbury turned his back on Canada he turned his back on us. He hurt our national team and he hurt soccer in this country. He gave the naysayers yet another excuse to say nay. If you're a Canadian soccer fan (and I don't necessarily mean a Canadian national team fan), he hurt the game you love by thinking of his short-term interests.

So boo Teal Bunbury. Because we're Canadian, and he's not.

That was Bunbury's first professional game in the country he betrayed, and Vancouver's boo-birds were out in force. Chants of "TRAI-TOR" were audible from the stands in a city that has a reputation for not caring much about Canada's national team. You guys got the point. I was very proud of you all, and even prouder when somebody reached that article the next morning by Googling "why does vancouver hate number 9 kansas city soccer".

The challenge is in keeping it up. Booing Bunbury the first time he raises his head in Canada looks impressive on television, but booing him the second and third time is what sends a message. It's what shows future would-be traitors that we're not just a bunch of rubes who briefly get angry then stop caring, but that we're real soccer fans who pay attention and don't forget those who spit on us.

Now, Bunbury had a very good game in Vancouver last year, although he was helped by a Greg Janicki injury. You may be tempted to say "so much for booing him then" or "that didn't work" or something similar. The idea was never to somehow make Bunbury into a worse player; that's a difficult thing for any crowd to achieve. The idea was to make it clear to Bunbury, and anybody else who was thinking of joining him, that Canada knows what he did.

Today, we need to show that we'll never forget.

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