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Are West Coast Soccer Fans More Hardcore Than East Coast Ones?

Last Saturday’s clash between Arsenal and Liverpool saw soccer fans on the west coast getting up as early as 4:30am PT to watch one of the biggest Premier League matches of the weekend. Meanwhile, on the east coast of the United States, fans had three hours extra sleep until they awoke at 7:30am ET with a cup of coffee in hand and the remote in the other.

But what does this say about soccer fans in the United States? Can we assume that because west coast soccer fans have to get up at the crack of dawn that they’re more devoted than fans on the other side of the country? Or are fans the same except that they just have to set their alarm clocks for different times?

If you live on the west coast or the western part of the United States, how do the early kickoffs on Saturdays and Sundays fit into your routine? Do you secretly envy soccer fans on the east coast who have it easy, in comparison?

Share your insight in the comments section below.

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  1. Chris from Texas

    August 26, 2011 at 7:45 pm

    I have actually noticed less hardcore fans in California compared to NYC and Austin. People Tivo or just don’t watch games against lower teams. It kills the sense of community a fan gets at a pub, but weeds out the posers.

  2. AP

    August 26, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    I just took GRE. It has a section where they give you a paragraph with flawed argument and one has to explain the flaws. This article would be perfect example of flawed reasoning. If you know about GRE, you’ll know what I’m talking about!

    • Matthew

      August 26, 2011 at 7:33 pm

      I have taken the GRE and have post gradute degrees. This article was intended to create discussion. If you look at the article it is filled with questions geared towards an audience to address, like a debate. All this is a discussion question. Your job as the audience was to supply an analytical response, which most did not. If you can’t see that, good luck getting into graduate school.

      • Guy

        August 26, 2011 at 7:52 pm

        Matthew, I agree with you 100%. I am always amazed at the visceral responses to rather innocuous questions/articles. The author was obviously having fun. This is a blog for crying out loud. Questions will be raised. Good. Bad. Indifferent. All of a sudden 50 people have their pants on fire. It really is amusing to see what pushed them over the edge. Some…and I stress some…don’t have much of a life. Do these people all have digitalis prescriptions?

        Write your own articles, folks, and submit them to The Gaffer. We are all dying to read your insightful analysis.

        • Matthew

          August 26, 2011 at 8:00 pm

          Guy, that was prefect. I agree completely.

        • MG

          August 26, 2011 at 11:55 pm

          So when someone writes a preposterously childish and frankly stupid article, one isn’t allowed to criticize it and call it out for what it is? That’s absurd.

          Let me put simply: To imply that West Coasters are more ‘hardcore’ than East Coasters simply because they watch a football match at 4am as opposed to 7am is silly. It is silly. I have a right to say that and I will say that and I have said that.

          “Write your own articles, folks, and submit them to The Gaffer. We are all dying to read your insightful analysis.”

          I don’t have any ‘insightful analysis”, but if I did, I can assure you that I would spare everyone ridiculous articles like this one.

          • Guy

            August 29, 2011 at 12:20 am

            Sorry, delayed 44 hours due to that punk storm, Irene…..

            I did not say there should be no criticism. If you feel an article is ridiculous and want to say so that is fine. This is a blog and anyone who writes an article should expect some to disagree with its premise/question, whatever it happens to be. I am just befuddled by the almost irrational anger of some posters, not just towards this article/writer, but others as well. I must be getting too old.

  3. Matthew

    August 26, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    The point is that people are interested. Why post a comment. If I am not interested in somthing I don’t bother with it. But a lot do care. I shouldn’t have to spell this out. Plus, if you resort to calling me names that is the hallmark of a person with nothing intelligent to say. A true sign of a person lacking depth and pesonality.

    • MG

      August 27, 2011 at 12:04 am

      “Why post a comment”

      Because I wanted to point out how ridiculous the premise of this article is. Simple as that.

      ” If I am not interested in somthing I don’t bother with it.”

      I’m not interested in it, again I needed to point out how stupid it is.. And if the point is to be funny, I didn’t really find it funny. Mainly because this isn’t really a comedy website, now is it? Had it been, I’d have taken it a lot less seriously, obviously..

      “But a lot do care.”

      Again, we don’t, we just decided to make our criticisms and disbelief known.

      ” Plus, if you resort to calling me names that is the hallmark of a person with nothing intelligent to say.”

      Nothing intelligent to say? I made several analogies, primarily about Englishmen and women who watch matches at 12 noon which, by the authors logic, would mean that they aren’t as ‘hardcore’ as East Coasters. Pointing out the absurdity of that very notion. Besides, all you’ve done is tell people a lie, that this article ISN’T stupid, which it is. Again, if it’s meant to be funny, I wouldn’t have known it.

      “A true sign of a person lacking depth and personality.”


  4. Matthew

    August 26, 2011 at 5:56 pm

    I am very serious and you just proved my point.

  5. Matthew

    August 26, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    To everyone who thinks this article is awful and a waste of time. Just think you are taking the time to read and comment with all your moaning and complaining. If you didn’t care why bother but you do. The writer is doing his job and well.

    • MG

      August 26, 2011 at 5:52 pm


      You can’t be that stupid, Matthew. There OVERWHELMING consensus that this article was childish and baseless. You must be joking/trolling..

      • MG

        August 26, 2011 at 5:53 pm

        There is*

  6. NY

    August 26, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    I’m always awake by 7am anyway. If I was on the west coast? I wouldn’t bother. I’d just catch the later games, it’s not a big deal missing the early kick-off.

    Pat yourself on the back for being hard-core. That’s one big accomplishment in life, being a hardcore fan of a game where men kick around a ball.

  7. Kyle

    August 26, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    Biggie > Tupac

  8. Tim Krass

    August 26, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    More hardcore? What’s the difference. I do not equate getting up early with being hardcore. When there is a football game I want to see, I want to see the build-up and I want to see these guys in the tunnel LIVE and Up-Close, like when Roy Keane punched out Patrick Viera. Trust me, it’s going to happen again during this year’s Manchester derby. Don’t be surprised if you see Sam Nasri going flying out of the tunnel from a Phil Jones right cross, or something like it.

    Everyone has a choice to watch their game live or later, when it fits into your schedule and sometimes I must use the DVR but, I fight it tooth and nail.

    If you don’t regularly watch your team live then, the discussion after the game wil end up only going so far. Thus, there are fans at all levels, just depends where your place is. No dresses allowed.

  9. Earl Reed

    August 26, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    So let’s take this another step further: that also means that West Coast fans are more dedicated and devoted than English based Premier League fans. I think that makes sense, based on your criteria.

  10. ChelseaMPLS

    August 26, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    I live on the East Coast now, I would much rather have the matches start at 4:30am, then 7:30am. I would simply stay up after going out, for the matches.

    Also does thie mean that Central Time is more hardcore then East Coast, since they have to get up at 6:30am ? And then Mountain Time is more hardcore then Central and East Coast, since they have to get up at 5:30am. I guess Hawaii and Alaska are even more hardcore then all of us! They have to get up at 3:30am, and 1:30am….

    • Dave C

      August 26, 2011 at 2:33 pm

      What about those people on the islands either side of the International Date Line – Are they hardcore or big softies? I can’t decide!

  11. Jason Gatties

    August 26, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    You can all kiss my butt. I live in the midwest and I’m going to be up at 3:30 am on random week days to watch the rugby world cup in a couple weeks.

    Bow to me

    • Guy

      August 26, 2011 at 2:51 pm

      Jason, did you buy the package or do you get Universal Sports? I’d like to see more than the 3 NBC matches, but don’t know if I want to go the $125. I may break down anyway.

  12. Thomas

    August 26, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    Uhh..DVR that sh*t.

    Just don’t check twitter or the web.

  13. Jacob

    August 26, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    Hell yes West Coast fans are more hardcore! Waking up at 3:30 to be at a pub by the 4:00 am match time is dedication people! Plus drinking beer at 6:00am is pretty bad ass too!!

    • nope

      August 27, 2011 at 10:28 pm

      It’s only bad ass if you stayed up all night drinking.

  14. carlos

    August 26, 2011 at 10:19 am

    No, just west coast soccer fans have no life. You basically have to stay in Friday night instead of going out to chill in order to get up that early.

    • carlos

      August 26, 2011 at 10:23 am

      Then again you could go out and party all Friday night and still watch the game at 430 by not sleeping at all but then you just ruined your whole Saturday by sleeping all day.

  15. BD

    August 26, 2011 at 10:17 am

    The bars don’t open until 7:00 AM in Portland, OR

  16. Dave C

    August 26, 2011 at 10:14 am

    I’m a big football fan, but IMHO if you’re getting up at 4:30am to watch a regular league match you’re just sad.

  17. Todd C

    August 26, 2011 at 10:03 am

    It’s called a DVR. Whenever you wake up and get your ish together you can start watching the matches from earlier that day. Regardless of coast. Just avoid the www and twitter until you’ve caught up. C’mon MAAN. It’s 2011. No need to wake up at 4:30am for a match…unless you’re really that “hardcore”/we-todd-did.

  18. threefeetoffun

    August 26, 2011 at 9:49 am

    This is silly. I live in Buffalo and had to get up to go out and watch the 730 match. If I lived on the west coast I would have just stayed up. No one is more hardcore than the other.

  19. Efrain

    August 26, 2011 at 9:49 am

    Mr. Muller,

    I didnt even get up at 730am to watch the match. DVR it! Eat, exercise, chores, errands… and my reward later…. a few beers and a match. Personally I prefer my beer after noon.


    Hardcore Fan

    • Darren

      August 26, 2011 at 1:44 pm

      After noon!!! … thats not hardcore.

      Beers for breakfast. Thats what HARDCORE soccer fans do.
      In fact, we shotgun beers to watch the 4:30am match of lower league teams like Swansea vs QPR. Exhillerating stuff!

  20. Fernando

    August 26, 2011 at 9:36 am

    There is no point to this article. Anyone who wakes up earlier for a game then they would for work is a good fan.

  21. xcrumedy

    August 26, 2011 at 9:29 am

    perhaps let’s argue that it does not get more hardcore than watching a match at 4:30 am while attending a tijuana donkey show … just sayin’

    here i thought the rubbish articles were left to the summer doldrums …

  22. BD

    August 26, 2011 at 9:24 am

    By far, the stupidest article I have read on EPLTalk. Gaffer, do you review these articles before they go out? Waking up early to watch a match HAS NOTHING to do with being hardcore.

    Time to start posting some more articles quick to push this dreck down into the archives……..

    • Taylor

      August 26, 2011 at 9:46 am

      I second to this opinion. This article might be good to generate comments and controversies but it doesn’t add value at all.

      When I lived in Asia, I and a lot of soccer fans got up at 1.30 or 2.30 AM to watch Champions Cup (and then Champions League), UEFA Cup, etc and this is before DVR era. That was just a fact but doesn’t give me the right to call the others less hardcore fans.

      Seriously, we need to move from this type of : true fans or not because they do not supporting a certain club, supporting more than 1 club, etc.

  23. Kris

    August 26, 2011 at 9:20 am

    I live in Philly and I’m at Fado every morning there’s a Gunners match regardless of time. A 4:30am start (pending that the bars will open then) would mean I could go out all night and stay up for the game which would be pretty cool, and no I would never DVR just to get more sleep, that’s the opposite of hardcore.

  24. MG

    August 26, 2011 at 9:07 am

    In fact, can we as Americans say we are ‘more hardcore’ than all of England for watching a match as early as 7am, when they are sitting comfortably in their couches and chairs 12 noon?.. It really is as silly as that.

  25. MG

    August 26, 2011 at 9:05 am

    Is this serious?.. It seems like an ‘Onion’ piece, without the funny..
    7am is still relatively early on a Saturday morning to get up and watch a football match. Waking up at 4am just because you live on the West Coast doesn’t make you more “hardcore” than an East Coaster.

    It does make you “less fortunate” though haha. It’s just a matter of fact. You guys are three hours behind us. I’m sure many East Coasters would get up at 4am if they live in the West, or, as has been suggested, they’d DVR it. Sure, it isn’t live, but you cannot deny the amount of hardcore fans that can’t watch Saturday matches and Tuesday-Wednesday Saturday matches because they have to work. It’s essentially the same thing. Watching the match on DVR is still watching the match.

    It’s laughable how almost childish this article is..

    • Alan Knut

      August 26, 2011 at 11:51 am

      Amen. I was about to type this same post, but you beat me to it.

      Just the title alone is ridiculous, and your comparison to the Onion is honestly the greatest criticism anyone could give. This article just should have never existed; except in a high school paper.

      • jobicoppola

        August 26, 2011 at 12:30 pm

        +1 for this and parent comment

        • Mike in Idaho

          August 26, 2011 at 1:14 pm

          +1 some more! Why would you wake up at an ungodly hour to watch a game when you could just watch it at your convenience when you wake up? If waking up to see a game at 5:30am (kick off time here) is hardcore, I guess I’m just not hardcore. I can live with that.

    • Chad

      August 26, 2011 at 1:53 pm

      +1. EPL Talk is better than this.

    • brother jon

      August 26, 2011 at 2:36 pm

      another +1: is this is a half-baked attempt to reignite east vs west friction? stop being silly, the only twits on either coast that go around wondering if they’re harder than other are twits. (or pervs) don’t be either.

  26. Clampdown

    August 26, 2011 at 8:56 am

    Who cares? Oh no, you’re not hardcore if you DVR the match and watch it when you wake up! In fact, you’re not hardcore at all because you didn’t get on a plane, fly there, and watch it in person!

    I can’t wait for the post laying out the ground rules for who is a fan and who is a supporter.

    • MG

      August 26, 2011 at 9:02 am

      hahah good point about flying out to watch it.

    • Guy

      August 26, 2011 at 2:38 pm

      “I can’t wait for the post laying out the ground rules for who is a fan and who is a supporter.”

      Ah, yes. Always tedious.

  27. Phiz

    August 26, 2011 at 8:20 am


    And east coast people are more hardcore about life because we get up 3 hours earlier every workday.

  28. PZ

    August 26, 2011 at 7:42 am

    I enjoyed the early kickoffs (and the early F1 races) when I lived on the west coast. It meant I could enjoy the match and still have more of the day left to enjoy other activities. & yes, more than once we also pulled all-night sessions drinking til the bars (pubs) closed at 2am then hung out for a few until kickoff.

  29. FCAsheville

    August 26, 2011 at 7:40 am

    “Last Saturday’s clash between Arsenal and Liverpool saw soccer fans on the west coast getting up as early as 4:30am PT”

    Just the dumbasses without DVR!

    • JerZGooner

      August 26, 2011 at 7:56 am

      I would suggest that if you are watching the match on DVR (w/o extreme circumstance) you are not a hardcore fan.

      • NotTheNoob

        August 26, 2011 at 9:01 am

        I’m am going to suggest that if you watch the ESPN2 fixtures live, with Ian Darke spoiling all the other fixtures, you are not a hardcore fan.

      • MG

        August 26, 2011 at 9:07 am

        What poor judgment..

    • Chad

      August 26, 2011 at 1:50 pm

      Exactly. DVR is our friend.

  30. Joe

    August 26, 2011 at 7:40 am

    I think the MLS attendance figures confirm what you suggest here.

  31. Evertonian

    August 26, 2011 at 7:37 am

    Maybe they stayed up?
    Gaffer, you need to get all over DISH moving FSC to a non-HD channel!

    • The Gaffer

      August 26, 2011 at 7:42 am

      As far as I can tell, they’re just moving channels. I’m hoping DISH will change it back from SD to HD very shortly.

      The Gaffer

      • NotTheNoob

        August 26, 2011 at 8:20 am

        This is very upsetting. I’m about the get on the phone with Dish Network to find out the scoop on FSC HD. I will not stand for being downgraded to SD.

        • NotTheNoob

          August 26, 2011 at 8:51 am

          I just got off the phone with Dish Network customer service. He tells me that FSC in HD will be on ch 406, but it hasn’t been added yet in the channel migration.

        • BD

          August 26, 2011 at 9:19 am

          I’m seeing FSC HD on 9520.

          Panic over, maybe

          When 406 goes HD, maybe 407 will too (Dish, are you listening).

          • NotTheNoob

            August 26, 2011 at 9:26 am

            FSC is still in HD on 149. It is also in HD on 9520. On both channels, the on screen guide does not list the programming. All it states i “this channel is moving to 406…As of Sept. 7th, this is their permanent home.” The lack of programming info makes using the dvr very difficult.

            At the moment, there is no guarantee from Dish Network that FSC will remain in HD, but a customer service rep from Dish assured me that FSC-HD will be on ch 406.

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