Playing from BC Place in Vancouver, British Columbia, the Seattle Sounders won out 3-0 over the Whitecaps to win the 2015 Cascadia Cup. The championship is the first since 2011, ending the winning streak of two years by the Whitecaps in the regional rivalry between Seattle, Vancouver and Portland.
Overall, Vancouver still holds the lead for Cascadia Cup Championship, with five wins, versus Seattle’s four and Portland’s three since it’s creation, though in the MLS era, the Whitecaps and Sounders remain tied – with two wins each, and one for the Timbers.
The history of the Cascadia Cup is unique, and is one of the main reasons that the Pacific Northwest has grown such an amazing, grassroots and supporter based football and soccer culture. It was started in 2004 by the three different supporters group for the Seattle Sounders, Portland Timbers, and Vancouver Whitecaps, who sponsored several hundred dollars for the creation of a two foot tall silver cup for whoever wins the most matches against the three rivals.
It was created while all three teams competed against one another in lower divisional play, first in the A-League, and then later USL-1 matches played between the three teams. In 2008, the Cascadia Cup was put on hold as the Seattle Sounders moved up into Major League Soccer (MLS), until 2009, when it was announced that the Vancouver Whitecaps and Seattle Sounders would both join as part of a major expansion as well. The fan created Cascadia Cup, then joined up, becoming a central rivalry for the three teams, involving an incredible amount of support from the fanbases of the Southsiders, Timbers Army, Emerald City Supporters (and their younger cousins the Gorilla FC). During Cascadia Cup matches, the three supporter groups generally construct massive TIFO displays, the largest in the MLS, and employ a fusion of Latin American, and European style support.
This grassroots support and ownership by the fans of the Cascadia Cup is notable, as in December 2012 the MLS filed a trademark claim for the rights to advertise using the “Cascadia Cup”. The lack of transparency in the process, and the lack of outreach to fans, sparked outrage among soccer fans across the Pacific Northwest. The three main supporter groups that had created the original competition, created a legal entity called the ‘Cascadia Cup Council’, with the sole purpose of protecting the Cascadia Cup from any form of trademarking. In 2013, an agreement was reached between the CCC and MLS that the CCC would retain the rights to the name, and that no monetization would occur – ensuring that it would remain fan driven and supporter run.
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