FIRST. GREATEST. MOST.


The idea for the banner came following Jeff Cunningham's game-winning, record-setting goal in Vancouver.  It became clear that not one, not two, but three of the most important players in Columbus soccer history were going to be in attendance at Columbus Crew Stadium on July 16, 2011.  The Crew were going to honor Brian McBride as the first inductee into the new "Circle of Honor."  Guillermo Barros Schelotto was returning from Argentina with his family to make Columbus their home and to start the new Schelotto & Padula Soccer Academy with former Crew teammate and champion Gino Padula.  And Cunningham, the new all-time leading goal scorer in Columbus history, was going to be playing for the Crew.  It seemed like the right thing to do to show the three greats our appreciation for their contributions and to recognize this special alignment of stars.

The banner was painted by a few supporters gathered together for a day of painting at Lisa Phillips' house, where we watched the Japan-Germany match in the Women's World Cup, had some barbecue and giant hot dogs, drank beer, talked with Sonny the Parrot, and put together a good banner in about 12 hours.  Among the people who worked on the banner were Lisa, Jordyn Holl, Manny Zambrano, Meredith Zeman, Evonne Segall, Katie Mitchell, Tara Canterbury, Kevin McCollough (who brought a big bucket of black paint that's going to serve us well for a few more banners) and the great Sam Fahmi, who brought his camera to document the making of the banner so, hopefully, we can show the rest of Crew Nation what's up and we can get more people doing more projects like this wherever they prepare to support Columbus.  And no Crew supporters' tifo can be made without paying homage to the standard that is set week in, week out by Rick Thomas.  Thoma's example has taught us that even on a relatively small project like this, it always must Be Massive.  Great work, everyone.

Here are a few photos from the match day:

From Massive Report photographer, Sam Fahmi. 

From ONN broadcast.


With a tiny budget and a small available space to produce this banner, it turned out pretty well.  Bigger things to come....

POSTSCRIPT:
We won TheEndline's MLS Tifo of the Week.

Massive.