Conor Larson is a huge soccer fan. He has been playing soccer since he was three years old, and he began watching soccer on television with his father, Keith, three years ago.
When Conor found out the Men’s National Team was coming to town to play Honduras in nearby Seattle, he knew he wanted to be there. He knew it would be a great game and a great day. He just didn’t know how great it would turn out.
Conor’s dad, Keith, entered Conor in a local radio contest, “Win a Weekend With the Team”. As winners of the contest, Keith and Conor Larson were allowed to watch the U.S. practice on Friday at Safeco Field. They also won a night at the team hotel, and tickets to the game and the post-game reception.
“I was really excited when my mom told me that I won the contest and would get to meet the U.S. team,” said Conor. “My favorite part of the weekend was getting to meet Brian McBride, because he is my favorite player. He signed my soccer ball, and I got to take my picture with him. I also really liked Kasey Keller.”
Wearing a David Beckham Manchester United jersey, Conor watched the Men’s National Team’s practice on Friday at Safeco Field and then collected autographs on his soccer ball after practice. After spending Friday night in the team hotel in downtown Seattle, Keith and Conor, as well as Conor’s Mom and his three-year old sister, were among the 38,543 fans at Safeco Field to witness a 4-0 U.S. win on March 2. Although Conor regularly watches soccer matches on television with his father, this game was the first U.S. match he has ever seen in person. “The game was really exciting. I liked that they scored a lot of goals,” Conor said. “We had really good seats for the game, but they were in the shade and it was a little cold.”
Conor, a second-grader at Artondale Elementary school in Gig Harbor, Wash., has been playing soccer for the Blast of the Harbor Soccer Club since he was three years old. He trains at the Wembley Academy of Soccer in Olympia and also routinely goes to “Soccer Aerobics”. This season, Conor’s team is in first place, due in large part to his goal-scoring abilities. “I’ve scored a lot of goals this season,” said Conor. “They make me play goalie sometimes, but I like forward better. I like to be the one scoring goals.” When he has free time at home, Conor likes to spend time in his backyard, scoring goals and pretending that he is Brian McBride.
The weekend was a dream weekend for Conor, and it left him with only one immediate want.
“After seeing the team and the game, now all Conor wants is one of the new Nike World Cup jerseys,” said his mother, Angela Larson.