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Barra Brava vs. Screaming Eagles

(By Toni L. Sandys and Jonathan Newton - TWP)

If you've been to a D.C. United game at RFK, you know of the Barra Brava and the Screaming Eagles, the rival supporters groups that exist literally in each others' shadows. Depending on where the sun is, I guess. The groups cooperate on many events, and are rivals in others.

Never will that horrific sentence be more true than on Sunday, when the clubs will meet in a men's-women's doubleheader at George Mason University, in front of several members of United, during the First Annual D.C. United Supporters' Charity Shield Match, where the number of words in the event's name will almost certainly exceed the number of goals scored.

All of the proceeds benefit the Wounded Warriors Project and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The event is also part of Nadine Namoff's woman of the year campaign, which is why Nadine told me her husband, defender Bryan Namoff, will be in the stands, with a painted face, beating on a drum.

"If she says that I'm gonna be painting my face, then odds are I might have it done," he said today. "I'm not gonna self-paint my face, but if someone wants to do it, so be it."

Not having seen the rosters, it's unclear to me which team would be favored. Even on the skills I've most commonly seen them perform (creating banners, drinking alcohol), I'd have trouble naming a favorite. But I've definitely never seen them play soccer, so I solicited some preview-style opinions.

"Yeah, that'll be interesting," Santino Quaranta said. "I'd probably go with the Screaming Eagles, man. They're probably a fitter bunch than the Barra Brava, you know?"

"I think Barra Brava's probably a little bit more violent," Ben Olsen said. "I don't know, I guess it would be kind of a pretty violent, passionate squad on the Barra side, and more of an intelligent, defensive chess game from the Screaming Eagles, but still passionate."

These guys were joking, incidentally. As was Namoff, when I asked for the projected winner.

"I don't know who's gonna win, I just hope the game doesn't end in an all-out brawl," he said.

"I wouldn't want to be the referee for that game," Olsen added. "It could get ugly."

Namoff does indeed plan to recruit teammates to sit in the stands and bang drums and the whole bit.

"I want to have the role reversal," he explained. "I'm gonna try to get some of the guys to come out and support the fan base, and just root and try to sing their songs they sing to us."

Which means he knows all the words, right? Well, no. He kind of blocks out those specifics while playing.

"I can hum them," he offered.

The games are at 1 (women's) and 3 (men's) at Mason's Robinson Field this Sunday.
The "ticket-price" donation is $10.

By Dan Steinberg  |  June 2, 2009; 3:51 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
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If you need a pic of the SEs we can help with that (as that's BB in both up there)

Posted by: goaldigger | June 2, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

I don't think the BB and SE are necessarily "rivals" in the stands, as you put it... if we were rivals, then why the hell would we a) be sitting right next to each other, and b) rooting for the same team? Both groups have one common goal: cheering on the best team in MLS. Duh. ;)

Posted by: Dynaformer | June 2, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Oh yeah, and those are definitely both BB photos. I'd like to see a photo of the "We sing better than your wife" banner from the Galaxy game a few years ago...

Posted by: Dynaformer | June 2, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

I presume La Norte will be in a corner somewhere?

Posted by: Colm1 | June 2, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Ladies SE-BB 2-0
Men BB-SE 3-2

Posted by: J_S_F | June 2, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

I would pay money to see United players in the stands jumping, singing, banging drums, etc. Heck, I've stood and danced next to Gomez in NY a few years ago when he joined us in the stands during a suspension.

Actually, this situation is exactly why I'm a bigger fan of United than the Redskins or the Wizards. Soccer players in the US are generally more accessible and fan-friendly than the multimillionaire athletes in the "major" sports. Do Redskins players applaud the crowd? Do Wizards players acknowledge the fans at all? Do Nats players celebrate a goal in front of their fans? Nope to all, I think. Sure they sign autographs, but that's obligatory. They don't seem appreciative of the fan base at all (the people actually helping to pay their exorbitant salaries).

United players are down-to-earth, real people. They seem thankful when we travel to away stadiums to help cheer them on. After home games, they come to the SEs, the BBs and La Norte to show their appreciation for our efforts. Some of the players are making good money, but most are only raking in enough dough to live moderately. They're not prima donnas looking down on the "little people" who watch their magnificence.

Good on Namoff and any other players who come to the DCUSCS Match.

Of course JSF has scouted these teams much more than I have but I prognosticate:

Men: SE 4- BB 2
Women: SE 3-BB 2

Posted by: DrBeaker | June 2, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

I'd expect the official line to look like JSF's prediction. What does Vegas say?

Posted by: sitruc | June 2, 2009 9:54 PM | Report abuse

Well the Barra Men's Team went undefeated in their first season in WISL D2, earning promotion to D1.

The Eagles have been in WISL for over 10 years, however I'm not sure which division.

Posted by: alecw81 | June 2, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse

I think what people don't realize is that for many years the Barra have had a famous "North-South" match where the VA Barra contingent plays the MD/DC branch--with the best refereeing that has every been seen at rfk i might add.

the only downside is that in this game one is required to have at least 1/2 a beer or cocktail in a cup--on sunday there will be no cups so the barra may be at a disadvantage.

Posted by: nffc65 | June 3, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Well the Barra Men's Team went undefeated in their first season in WISL D2, earning promotion to D1.

The Eagles have been in WISL for over 10 years, however I'm not sure which division.

Posted by: alecw81 | June 2, 2009 10:36 PM | Report abuse


Oh, man... Are we looking at two teams of ringers? I mean, I know a few of those guys, but you don't see 'em in the stands all that often, you know what I mean?

In that case, may the best ringers win.

Posted by: JoeS3 | June 3, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

I promise 2 goals!! LOL I think this is going to be an awesome game! And I also think the eagles don't have a chance :-)!!!

Posted by: ThE-BaRRa-BrAvA-KiD | June 3, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

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