The following is a letter Timbers Army season ticket holder, Erica Goode, sent to the Portland Timbers front office. It is reprinted here with her permission.
The opinions she expresses are her own, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the 107ist board of directors.
I renewed my tickets today, but I thought about it for a long time. As much as I love the Timbers, I am finding it hard to justify giving money to a front office, in particular, an owner, which seems to disdain its supporters. Many of his comments on Twitter reflect someone who is more concerned with his own ego rather than the progress of the club. I am often embarrassed by the immaturity in his tweets. But that is obviously a personal reaction that I have – one shared by many others but not universally.
A more tangible example is the charging for Trimet tickets, which is incredibly tone deaf and really short-sighted. Partnering with Uber, an organization with questionable business practices for its “non” employees, makes the situation worse, but it is really the money grab regarding the passes that bothers me.
I understand that the club is a business. I understand the need to make a profit. But it is a football club. Its purpose is to win. But I do not see that happening very often, and I do not see an owner that values winning over maximizing profit. That is extremely disheartening, especially as I was a huge champion of the MLS2PDX campaign. I attended the march to City Hall and attended the hearing. Through the years, I have given my tickets to cashiers at grocery stores, bank tellers, people I don’t really know, in an effort to spread the love of the club. Long before current ownership was anywhere near the club.
The financial and marketing success of this club in MLS have been on the backs of supporters who have given their all to make the best atmosphere in the league. But what has the organization done to put the best eleven on the pitch? I hear a lot of whining about referees and excuses about the weather, the altitude, the schedule, etc. Winners rolls with the punches; they don’t petulantly tweet about them and then delete those tweets an hour later.
I have pride in the supporters and the history of this club. But it is hard now to feel the same about the current situation. I always hate venting to you about these things, because you cannot change them. Still, I felt you ought to know.