PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - The Timbers Army is planning to protest the banning of Portland fans in connection with the MLS policy on political displays.
The 107 Independent Supporters Trust, the nonprofit group behind the Timbers Army and Rose City Riveters, reported that “multiple individuals” were issued three-game bans for displaying flags with the Iron Front image during the Aug. 31 match at Providence Park.
MLS has banned the use of signage deemed political, including the Iron Front symbol, which is “widely associated with its frequent use by antifa,” according to the Timbers.
At the Timbers match at Providence Park against the Seattle Sounders on Aug. 23, supporters of both teams engaged in a protest by remaining silent for the first 33 minutes of the game.
Now, the Timbers Army has announced they will not fly any flags or deploy any smoke for goal celebrations for Saturday’s match against Sporting KC.
Instead, the Timbers Army plans to use banners with words instead of symbols, “to remind the world of our unwavering opposition to fascism and to discrimination.”
The group also plans to continue fighting against the MLS policy and working to lift the bans for the fans who displayed the Iron Front flags and banners.
“We want to make something very clear: Our fight is not a fight with the Portland Timbers. Our fight is against white nationalists, white supremacists, and others that seek to bring hate and violence to our stadium, city, state, and country. In this moment of darkness, we feel obliged to rally to make the soccer community the inclusive place that the world isn't for so many of our marginalized communities here in Portland. We look forward to working with the Portland Timbers Front Office in this fight for our community,” according to a Timbers Army statement.
The situation has received attention from nationwide sports media outlets, including ESPN.
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