For the game. For all.

Tony Cardone
Aug 24 · 4 min read

Since our founding back in 2013, we’ve worked to be the voice of the soccer fan in Austin. We have always believed that soccer is for all, and our club should represent the best of us — the city we want to be proud to share with guests from all over the world.

The Independent Supporters Council (ISC), a group of more than 60 supporters groups throughout all levels of US and Canadian soccer, shares those values. Today, we’re excited to share that Austin Anthem has joined the Council.

Austin Anthem will keep doing our thing the way we’ve been doing it for nearly six years now, a (sometimes unholy) alliance of queso fountains, civic engagement, and an unabashed love for our sport.

This move will allow us to become more active in the broader North American soccer landscape. When we travel to away games as a group or as individuals, we expect to be treated with respect. When other groups and individuals come to Austin, we want to treat them to the same respect.

As is human nature, we’re not going to get along with everyone. Sport by its very nature is a competitive endeavor, and it’s why we love it so much. But nobody should be subject to a dangerous road trip nor be targeted because of who they are or who they support.

The ISC will give us a venue to ensure that soccer is moving forward — not backward.

We’re against racism. Against homophobia. Against fascism. Against hate of all types. And united with our fellow soccer supporters, our voices have a bigger impact when we say it together.

We believe the Independent Supporters Council will be an invaluable asset as a supporters group towards achieving a more equitable soccer culture, and we hope you’re with us.

FAQ

What is the Independent Supporters Council?

The Independent Supporters Council is a group of more than 60 supporters groups throughout the United States and Canada just like Austin Anthem. They range from the top flight MLS SGs that you’ve probably heard of, such as the Timbers Army and Dallas Beer Guardians, to the NPSL’s Denton Harbringers from North Texas.

Each SG is independent of the team they support, and is not beholden to their club’s front office. Hence the “independent” part.

Check out the full website: https://www.officialisc.com/

Why is Austin Anthem joining ISC?

We’re people people. We have much to learn from other supporters groups in the next eighteen months before Matchday 1, and these connections will prove to be crucial in helping us mix Austin culture with the soccer world.

Perhaps more importantly, however, is the ability for our voices to be amplified by member groups from around the country. When there are concerns and issues with how the league is operating, the ISC is the voice of the fan.

What rules are there for Austin Anthem now that we are part of ISC?

We haven’t had to change how we operate to align ourselves with ISC bylaws, and we don’t expect to. We will be sending representatives to ISC meetings, which will provide an important way to connect with fellow SG leaders. The whole list of rules members must adhere to is here: https://www.officialisc.com/bill-of-rights-by-laws

Who else is in ISC?

A lot of people. Texas teams that have members in ISC are FC Dallas (Dallas Beer Guardians), Houston Dynamo (Texian Army), San Antonio FC (Crocketeers and 210 Alliance), and Denton Diablos FC (Denton Harbingers). There is no other ISC group in Austin.

You can see the full list of current members of ISC on their website — https://www.officialisc.com/current-members.

Do you not trust the league front office?

We have a great relationship with the Austin FC front office, and we will continue to work with team leadership to ensure this club lives up to the high standard that we expect from an Austin institution.

We’re fortunate. Not all supporters groups have such a positive relationship with their club’s ownership. At some point, there will be a difference of opinions. We hope to leverage the broader ISC membership so that we can work with the front office in enacting meaningful change when we feel it’s needed.

The league is tasked with the commercial success of our game. We supporters are in charge of realizing the benefits of our game for our entire community. It’s one of the core principles that drives Austin Anthem: it’s more than a game. Sometimes, the commercial benefits come in conflict with the community’s best interests.

We consider it our mandate to ensure the community — our community — is always put first.

Taking to social media to complain is cathartic. But a far more effective solution is collective action, be it through deliberate dialogue or something more visible.


Austin Anthem is the independent supporters group for Austin FC, the Major League Soccer club of Austin, Texas.

For more information, visit us online at AustinAnthem.org

Austin Anthem

The Official Soccer Supporters Group of Austin FC

Tony Cardone

Written by

Director of Social, Newsletters, and Web at Austin Anthem

Austin Anthem

The Official Soccer Supporters Group of Austin FC

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