Die-hard Timbers fans hoping to be first in line Saturday–and for all future home games–will have to get creative.
New rules prohibit soccer fans from camping outside Providence Park and from getting a wristband more than 24 hours before a match.
The recent edicts don't sit well with many long-time Timbers fans.
"Being out here on the streets, spending the night ... it's just something that's indescribable," Gary Buckler, a fan outside Providence Park Friday night, said.
The Army section seats aren’t numbered, so it’s typically first come, first serve. Some fans arrive days early to ensure they get a wristband, which allows them to secure the best seats possible.
Some fans at Providence Park Friday night said they had spent the past two nights in front of the field.
“We have to have a chair,” Gary Buckler, another fan outside the field Friday night, said. “And I’ve got a small pod that covers the chair. I’m going to be in, out of the rain, and I’ll have to sleep sitting up.”
One person said they had been camped outside the field since Monday.
Event staff say the new rules are due to limited space at the park, which is currently being expanded. Staff also say they will hand out fewer wristbands than in previous years. Only 600 will be distributed this year, compared to 1,000 last year.
The Timbers kick off against Minnesota Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
The Timbers army will be let into Providence Park two-and-a-half hours before match time. All other fans will have to wait an additional 30 minutes before entering.
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