The Toronto FC Survival Handbook

The Toronto FC Survival Handbook will get you pumped for the season and give you tips on how to make it a good one
by Sonja Missio   |   Monday, February 18, 2013

Red Dawn Rising - column on Toronto FC (TFC) & the Toronto Ontario soccer scene

The original draft of this article was written in the backseat of my parents’ car as we drove to a Family Day dinner soiree. For those who are not familiar with Family Day, join the club. The Province of Ontario created the holiday in 2008, and Ontarians have enjoyed the third Monday of February off since. While no one in this province really knows what it’s for, the majority of us welcomed the made-up holiday (and the day off).

Anyway, in the spirit of Family Day, I have decided to take a look at my second family, Toronto FC, for my article this week.

But with a twist.

The truth is, I feel guilty; I feel like I have been neglecting TFC. I don’t call anymore, I don’t stop by for dinner and I haven’t watched any of the Mickey Mouse Cup (mainly due to bandwidth issues). In other words, I have been a pretty poor family member.

But it’s time to make up for that.

It’s time to whip myself back into TFC shape and look forward towards the upcoming season, which starts in a little less than a month.

While the club is in their preseason training, I have decided that I needed to begin my own. Because let’s face it, being a fan takes hard work and dedication too.

And that’s the twist: how fans should get ready and stay ready, for the upcoming season.

So, with that in mind, I present to you a survival guide on to be a Toronto FC fan for the 2013 season.

The SAS to TFC, if you will.

1.   Look over the schedule

Nothing makes me realize the season is almost here than writing each individual game in my day planner. Actually seeing the upcoming games and starting to plan my spring/summer/fall around them makes me psyched (/psychotic). But the truth is that nothing prepares me for the long summer ahead than actually seeing all the games unfold in front of me. The visual makes it all seem real.

Remember: it’s going to be TFC for the next eight months. Better start planning now.

2.   Dress appropriately

I love seeing people wearing their TFC scarves as winter scarves during the cold Toronto winter (side note: I’m the creepy – but sweet – girl who smiles at you on the subway when I spot the colours tied around your neck).

Anyway, for those of you who wear your scarf as part of your winter wardrobe, try putting on a Toronto jersey. For those who have not donned the colours since last fall, drape a scarf around your neck.

Putting on your team colours will help renew your excitement for the season. It will help you recall the anticipation on putting on your armour pre-game. And it will help you remember your passion for the team.

Plus, red is totally your colour.

3.   Plan your route

I won’t go into much detail about this, as I wrote about it ad nauseum last week, but start planning away games now. Get together with friends, plan with others from rival cities and sort out a road trip. Who needs a vacation of a week in the sun when you have the opportunity to stand in an unfamiliar stadium for 90 minutes?

Just remember to always chip in for gas.

4.   Have a backup plan

This is another thing I have mentioned before, but I feel like it is worth mentioning again. If you are a season ticket holder and cannot make it to a game, consider an alternative to letting your tickets go unused. Through your account manager, you can donate your tickets to the Give-A-Kid-A-Game Program, which gives kids the opportunity to attend a game that they may not be able to go to otherwise.

5.   Wear sunscreen

No, seriously. Especially if you’re in any section that isn’t on the west side of the stadium.


These are just a few tips to get your pumped for the upcoming season. They may seem silly, but really they help with mental preparation. And if there’s anything one needs to be a Toronto FC fan, it’s mental preparation.

Plus, red is totally your colour. 


Univ. of Guelph, Univ. of W. Ontario, Brock University
Club Domestic:
Toronto FC
Club Foreign:
Supported Udinese since birth, TFC was her own stupid decision; writing on her masochistic relationship with soccer started after. Doomed as a Canadian - Friulano - Swiss - Filipina. Searching for Juventini actually from Turin and running for FIFA Prez.