Although Saturday’s game did not end the way the Montreal Impact had imagined, the support in the stands was representative of the entire season – loud, vibrant and proud of the team on the pitch.
“The way the supporters cheer and sing all game long is unbelievable,” said Impact head coach Jesse Marsch. “The knowledge of our fan base about what to cheer for and when is unlike anywhere else in the league and you get the feeling that you are playing in Europe. The supporters group have been loud all season and sing for the entire match and the other fans have followed their lead.”
Passionate Jebi Knights
The support for the team was so passionate and heartfelt so much so that it became common place to see players comment on Twitter about how great the team’s backers had been at different moments throughout the season.
That passion turned into a phenomenon for one player, Jeb Brovsky, who developed a special bond with the fans. That bond turned into an actual fan club for the Notre-Dame grad called the “Jebi Knights”, using the Star Wars movie franchise as its foundation.
“It makes you feel like you are at home,” said the second year defender. “If a player can establish relationships with the supporters, and the fans with the players, it makes it so much easier to play. I couldn’t be happier with the support we’ve gotten this season.”
As loud as it can get
Another player that found his way into the hearts of Impact supporters was Patrice Bernier, the local boy who played 10 seasons in Europe before coming home to don the Impact uniform once again.
“It’s not everywhere that you play in front of 20,000 supporters,” said Bernier. “A lot of times this season Stade Saputo was extremely loud and I’ve had players from other teams come and tell me how great the atmosphere was.”
Impact president Joey Saputo summed it up best.
“I’ve had supporters come to me and thank me for bringing an MLS team here, but my response to them is always the same: THANK YOU for all your support. Without you, we wouldn’t be where we are today.”