Inside the Box: Spotlight on Supporter Behavior
Prior to this week's matches against Chicago and San Jose, we would like to alert and inform our membership as to important developments inside the supporters' section.
There have been recent changes, driven by the league office, regarding the enforcement of rules against the throwing of any objects in MLS stadiums.
During the traditional "beer showers" celebrations that follow a D.C. United goal, cups have ended up on the pitch. This season, the individuals responsible for throwing those cups, including a Screaming Eagles member, have received punishments of up to six-month bans from Audi Field.
There is never any excuse for an object coming out of The Nest and onto the pitch. It puts players, referees, staff, and fellow supporters at risk. Even thrown items that don't make it all the way to the pitch can still cause injury to other supporters.
Stiff punishments, paired with the advent of high definition security cameras focusing on the supporters' section, mean that cup throwing will only lead to more stadium bans. This will lead to fewer supporters in the section to be there for the team; nobody wants that.
If you do choose to participate in a beer shower after a goal, please follow this one simple guideline:
HOLD ON TO YOUR CUP!
Toss the the beer out of the cup and straight into the air. Do not throw the cup. This isn't complicated, folks. Please don't be a knucklehead and fling a full cup of beer (or soda, or whatever else you might be drinking) without any regard for where it lands.
D.C. United has given supporters a fair amount of leeway on this issue, recognizing that the "beer shower" celebration has become traditional. But if your cup comes out of your hand for any reason, you could face a multiple match stadium ban.
For additional clarification, we've provided a link to the full MLS Code of Conduct. As always, we'll continue to bring you league updates to rules or enforcement as we receive them.