Sunday, July 14, 2024
Sunday, July 14, 2024

Omaha Preview: Bad Tweets, Influence, and Irony

Morning all. Tensions are truly running high in the FMFC world since Saturday, as the loss to Richmond puts the Flamingos inches away from missing the playoffs. A win vs Omaha will keep those chances alive, while a loss puts us mathematically out.

Last night I tweeted something I shouldn’t have (add it to the pile, I know). It all stemmed from an interaction I had in Richmond with a man named Ron, a Virginia-based FMFC fan. After I was inside the grounds at City Stadium and just after getting a beer, Ron stopped me and introduced himself, we clinked our koozie’d tallboys together while I toasted to a hopeful win. Ron then rehearsed the joke about having more kits than wins this year, and said he was already convinced we were going to lose.

I asked where he heard/saw that joke and he said he heard it on one of the FMFC podcasts. In my hungover state, I kinda just shrugged my shoulders and made my way down to the front of Section M. I have to admit, what Ron said got to me and it bugged me throughout the game.

After the game was over, I ran up to the bathroom and saw Ron on his way out of the stadium. I shouted after him and said he should come back to the RV for a beer and hang out, talk about the game, etc. Ron turned around and said he was going home, that he couldn’t believe he wasted his time coming out — which I found disappointing because it was probably the most entertaining match I’ve seen this season. Ron left, and now with the luxury of hindsight, can see a bit why Ron would be upset: he doesn’t get to see the team in person very often, and yeah — it was a disappointing result.

Back to the tweet I shouldn’t have posted. Last night the thought of cracking a joke about some of the FMFC podcast hosts not attending matches and still churning out episodes crossed my mind, as a comparison to the kits:wins ratio. It was meant to be tongue in cheek, as in my mind it’s a completely ridiculous equivalence. The joke wasn’t even that strong, which should have been my first indication to draft & delete, but I posted it anyway.

I posted a follow-up saying that I thoroughly enjoy and support Forward’s Backwards and Talkin’ Flock, and that while this season has been brutal as far as results, those hosts need to know there’s a wider community that takes their cues from them. If they go negative, fans will too. After a night’s sleep and Rob Chappell’s righteous (and correct) reprimand of what I tweeted, I realized the heavy dose of hypocrisy in me posting something about remembering the weight of our words, because I’d done the exact thing I was trying to joke about.

It’s easy for me to write and say whatever I want while I’m not getting paid for this, but this situation was a reminder for me that for people like Rob who make their living as journalists, credibility has an hugely value and it’s not something I should be flippant about. Lesson learned: talk to people directly instead of complaining indirectly on socials, hell I should have just told them the bad joke in private — they could have dressed me down in private. Joking at the expense of people you respect and call friends is a dangerous game, and it’s worse when you’re not even getting the laughs you want.

You should all listen to Forward’s Backwards and Talkin’ Flock – they’re informative, funny, and each offer a different perspective. And to be clear: I actually think it’s fantastic that Jeremy does Talkin’ Flock every week even though he’s not based in Madison and can’t come to a lot of games. One of my inspirations and favorite all-time podcast‘s host lives in Dublin and writes/records about Arsenal, and isn’t able to go to a lot of games in London. It takes a village, and I respect the hell out of anyone who uses their life force to write about sport, especially if they’re channeling their passion from afar.

My sincere apologies to Jeremy, Keith, Kyle, and Rob. I said a dumb thing, and I shouldn’t have.

Right then. Omaha.

Tonight’s game decides whether there’s any potential of silverware this season, and it’s not going to be an easy one. Omaha sits at the top of the table, and in most other league setups in the world they’d be crowned champs tonight if they win; tonight’s their chance to clinch first place. Along with some of the great Omaha fans I met when they played at Breese in June, I then met a bunch more when we visited in July, and if they win I’ll honestly be happy for them. This pandemic has been absolute shit and while I’d rather our guys be lifting a trophy and me reveling in victory, I’ll settle for some of my friends having their moment.

Omaha has been dominant in USL1 this season and Jay Mims has organized his squad at times to the level of brutal efficiency. As much as their overly narrow pitch annoys my sensibilities about the way the game ought be set up and played, it’s within the laws of the game so fair play to them. Madison players will likely have felt Saturday night’s loss like a punch in the gut, and I just hope tonight they can stoke some of the fire in their bellies we saw in Richmond.

Players to Watch

Omaha

Evan Conway netted a hat trick on Saturday vs NCFC and will likely be riding high, boasting a season-long average of a goal nearly every 90 minutes. Greg Hurst is always a looming goal threat, and left back Damia Viader is arguably the best all-round player in the league with 6 goals and 5 assists to his name, and that’s just his offensive stats.

Madison

Josiah Trimmingham had a dynamite game vs Richmond, scoring a true striker’s goal despite being deployed as a central defender most of his playing career. It will be interesting to see if Carl picks him in the XI again, and personally I feel if one of our players is taking chances and scoring, we have to start them. Eric Leonard and Justin Sukow played with incredible intensity and heart in the last game, and for me they also have to be on the team sheet.

A Question of Character

This is a must-win game for both sides, and it will be interesting to see which Madison team shows up tonight. Will it be the one capable of beating Omaha back in May, or the team that fails to get results on the road? Carl’s task tonight to rouse the passion and professionalism in these players is not an easy one, and time will tell as to whether the guys want to fight for each other and the fans of this club, to turn the tide and to close the season out strong.

All I ask is that they give us a performance to be proud of.

Author

  • Andrew Schmidt

    Eclecticist, FMFC supporter, Flock co-founder, designer of things, and taker of photos. Writer, wrench, motorcyclist. Pro-intellectualist, anti-pedant. Drinker of coffee and greeter of dogs.

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