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Self-explanatory title.

In sports, usually the smaller teams only have local supporters, while the bigger ones have supporters that go beyond their city/town/region and even country. This often upsets locals of smaller towns that have a smaller team representing them, and they'll immediately view the supporters of bigger teams as gloryhunters or plastics.

In football/soccer it's quite common for people outside of Europe to have a favourite European club or two. Usually top clubs from England/Spain/Germany/Italy. Personally, I don't think it's that big of a deal for an Indonesian guy to support AC Milan or Liverpool. Those clubs never face Indonesian clubs in official matches since European clubs play in UEFA competitions and Asian clubs in the AFC. So unless an Indonesian club one day wins the AFC Champions League and on the same year as Liverpool win the UEFA CL and both clubs meet each other at the FIFA Club World Cup, it's unlikely they'll ever face each other ever, even in a friendly match.

I do think it's important to support your local team, though. By this, I mean teams from your country. I guess a lot of countries out there don't have developed enough infra-structure or a strong traditional football culture enough to get locals excited for their football, so they end up looking up to European clubs instead. I do find it a little bit odder for, let's say, a person from Denmark or Croatia to support a foreign team and not care at all for a Danish or Croatian team. Here in Portugal a lot of people like football and follow the big leagues and might have a slight preference for a foreign club or two, but it's NEVER superior to their alliance to the local club. I've only met a single Portuguese person in my life who strictly supported a foreign club: it was back in 9th grade and he supported FC Barcelona and had NO connections to Spain or Catalonia whatsoever. It was a bit odd, but his choice I guess. Portugal has a strong enough football culture, tradition and history which means people will support Portuguese clubs.

Anyway, considering people from all over the world see certain clubs playing in the latter stages of the Champions League on a regular basis I can't really blame them for taking a liking to those clubs. It's actually a bit stranger for people to support smaller or less-known clubs from far away, tbh. Like, when I happen to see an American or a Canadian supporting Norwich FC of all English clubs it makes me wonder. I guess it's brave and noble of them to do so, but it's bit head scratching, know what I mean?

I recently met a Japanese guy who supports Benfica. He doesn't support any J-League team afaik and he even said he'd support Portugal's NT against Japan's because "there's no Japanese players at Benfica". I mean, I appreciate his love for Benfica, but it's still a bit odd hearing that :lol. Japan is actually one of the top Asian countries at football and the J-League gets good attendance. Apparently he became a Benfica fan when he travelled to Portugal in 2010 to study Portuguese and happened to watch our games at the stadium and his favourite player of all time was Pablo Aimar who played for us at the time. If Aimar was his idol, safe to say that he was already a football fan at least 7-8 years previously.

Can't speak much about American sports cuz I don't follow or know much about them, but pretty sure the NBA is huge worldwide and I'm sure a lot of people who live far from USA and never been there support NBA teams such as the Bulls or the Lakers. I think American teams usually don't play European basketball teams, do they?

I guess everyone is different. I am Portuguese and from Lisbon and my entire family supports Benfica, so I can't imagine myself supporting any other team. Most foreigners who support Benfica are people with Portuguese ancestry from Portuguese immigration in the 50s-60s and people from former Portuguese colonies in Africa. Occasionally you'll meet a guy like the Japanese fan I mentioned a couple of paragraphs above, though. I also have met a German guy before who only supports Benfica. Makes me wonder why no Bundesliga team has conquered his heart instead, since Germany has a strong football history with several well-known clubs that have had legends playing for them in the past, but whatever lol. Glad he's on our side instead.

I've read somewhere before that Liverpool fans are annoyed at all the tourists in Anfield these days. I think I'd be annoyed too if half of my team's stadium consisted of Chinese tourists taking selfies all the time, but that's not happening here, so I don't find the whole thing overwhelming. In fact, I think it's kinda nice of them to pick a team like ours when they could have easily picked regular CL winners and contenders. A fan is a fan and adds revenue and social media engagement and following to Benfica. A foreigner who supports Benfica is, in my book, much worthier than a Portuguese person who hates it. Benfica is the most popular club in Portugal with fans all over the country and also enjoys immense popularity in former Portuguese colonies such as Cape Verde, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, etc. so it's not that odd for someone from the other side of the world to take a liking to us nor do we see it as a problem. Maybe people from smaller and more regional clubs would find that odd.

Ofc a lot of those Asian and African fans of Bayern or Man City will be plastics, but a lot of them are likely to become fans for life, so it's hard to generalise. And someone who adapts their sleeping pattern to watch a bunch of games every month deserves some credit to some degree. I couldn't imagine having to stay up until 3AM to watch Benfica play regularly. Does that make me less of a fan? I don't think so.

Thoughts?
 

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Hello I think this is all about the reasons why they support the teams .

I think if your family support a team then you are likely to support that team if even you are in that town/area or country.
There are a lot of cricket fans who support the team that reflects their background, as some people have never been to Caribbean on holiday but their family come from their so they are West Indies fans against everyone including England even when they are born in England.

When I was visiting family in Minnesota in December 1999 I was not much of an NFL fan didn't have a team.

However as my cousin husband and his mates had the game and I wanted to make conversation I joined him and his mates to watch the game on TV and became a fan.

So much so that I got 4 or 5 of my mates Vikings shirts .

I have also been to Every Vikings international series in London at Wembley stadium and at Twickenham Rugby stadium.

It is your choice what team you support!

Yours

Farhan
 

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Doesn't bother me. But then I moved every few years so my teams are eclectic as fuck. Being in Italy in the late 80s/early 90s means I was thankfully exposed to the greatest club team of all time in AC Milan. And naturally an Italian National team supporter. Outside of that, my teams have nothing to do with my physical proximity to them. I support the Cubs in baseball, Eagles in the NFL, Capitals in hockey, and the US for the women's national side. I think the only team I can be called a "bandwagon" hopper for is AC Milan..... but then, who couldn't love that team during that run? I suffered with the Cubs and Eagles until recently. Weird... those two now have championships. Capitals too. Though I didn't suffer as long with them.
 
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Impressions/impact I guess. Am a life long Bulls fan because of the whole dynasty team, this is while also supporting my home state's most pathetic sports team in its history: The Atlanta Hawks.

What I don't like are fair weather fans who teleport from bandwagon to bandwagon, only supporting teams who keep winning/winning championships.

I almost want to be a Cleveland Browns fan for the sole fact that those people just will not give up on that team, even after 0-16, that is real love right there.
 

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Like what others have said, I don't mind who supports you as long as they're not bandwagon jumping.

One slight exception- in rugby league we have a best of 3 games series called "State Of Origin". The entire concept of the series is about the interstate rivalry, New South Wales vs. Queensland. A few people I know support Queensland because they've been more successful in recent years- a bit of a bandwagon thing but admittedly it is longer term. I like to remind them "it's State of ORIGIN" not "State of PREFERENCE".
 

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I don’t have any problem with it at all. Folk jumping on the bandwagon solely because a team has just won something annoys me a little bit though but it’s not a big deal to me really.

I’m from Scotland but I follow Real Madrid and have done for the past 15 years so if you know your football, you’ll know they weren’t too hot at that time so I definitely did not jump on the bandwagon.

They’d just finished 2nd to Barca, had been knocked out of the Champions League at the last 16 AGAIN and the galacticos era was coming to an end.

I was working abroad (Egypt) on a supply vessel at the time and the only sports TV we had was the Real Madrid TV channel and the occasional Champions League game which we all watched together in the galley. I was a big fan of Zidane, Raul and Guti and I loved the all white kit so I just naturally started following them without really knowing who they were!
 

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I think that's the fun of sports that an individual can root for whatever team they choose. I've seen a lot of instances where people form a bond with a team over something from their childhood. For example a friend of mine was just a kid in 1993 when the Montreal Canadiens won the Stanley Cup. He's always said that watching those playoff series was magical to him and he's cheered for Montreal ever since despite living nowhere near Quebec.
 

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Unless you grew up somewhere else and moved I've never really understood being a fan of a team from another place.

Like I'm in cali I see alot of Seahawks fans like wtf?

At one point cali had 3 teams and u cant pick one to be a fan of lol?


Not a huge issue for me but it has always confused me unless your from Cleveland lol
 

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I don't see an issue with it but maybe that's because I'm one of those guys when it comes to Football/Soccer, but I was born in a Rugby League town (with no Football Team, St Helens) grew up in another Rugby League Town (who has a semi pro team Workington) that now lives in Scotland who supports Tottenham and have done for around 30 years now when it comes to Rugby I'm 100% loyal to my place of birth with St Helens.
 

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It's up to everyone what they do, and I'll support a team from a foreign cricket league, or another country as a "second team" but I'd be lying if I said I really gave the same kind of fuck about them winning or losing as I do England. I support Warwickshire in the UK cricket tournaments as it's the closest team, but I'm not from there, have never lived there, and again I don't pin my hopes and dreams on them winning stuff like I would if they were really a "local" team to me.
 

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Fandom is a strange and wonderful thing and as long as you're passionate and love your team I don't think it matters how local you are. My football team is my local team as Ive been going to watch them live since the age of 6 and for a long time I very much thought you should support your local team.

Getting into NFL and NBA over the last 5 years or so has definitely changed my mind though as I'd call my self a massive Dallas Cowboys and Chicago Bulls fan but havent seen either live or even been to either city (or state for that matter)

If you form an attachment to a team who isn't local then fair play enjoy it. So much crap and negativity in the world that if a sports team thousands of miles away bring some positivity to your life then sit back and enjoy it
 
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