Timbers, Will Johnson collaborate on new captain's armband

Johnson: Being team captain is the biggest honor and responsibility of my career

2013 Will Johnson captain's armband

Photo Credit: 
(Portland Timbers)

It is often said that donning the captain’s armband is one of the biggest honors bestowed upon any soccer player. The armband itself, though, is often a simple accessory with just one letter on it, signifying the utmost respect of the captain’s teammates and coaches. It represents an expected level of leadership, performance, character, and composure. For the 2013 season, Portland Timbers head coach Caleb Porter tabbed midfielder Will Johnson as team captain.

READ: Will Johnson receives Timbers armband

While most captains’ armbands utilize a simple design with a large “C” in the middle, the Timbers have again elected to provide their captain with a unique armband and this season, Johnson is helping design it.

Johnson answered several questions about the city of Portland, Timbers fans, the team’s jerseys, some of his favorite elements of other armbands, and what the armband means to him. His answers were sent to the Timbers’ design team who incorporated his answers into the final design.

“I wanted something unique that represents the club, while still being clear that it’s a captain’s armband,” said Johnson.

Throughout the design process, Johnson spoke about elements that he admired: in the Timbers’ green home kits are the words “No Pity,” a popular Timbers Army war cry. In addition to “No Pity,” Johnson wanted to pay homage to the Rose City. Finally, Johnson repeatedly expressed his love for playing in front of the Timbers Army, referring to the supporters as “passionate, knowledgeable, and dedicated.”

The final armband incorporates elements of each of these concepts. The Rose City Red crest appears in the armband along with the Timbers axe appearing in the opposite top corner, balancing with the “No Pity” and “Rose City” phrases in their respective bottom corners. Additionally, chevrons hug the “C,” creating a flow from the center of the armband to its borders. A big yellow "C" anchors the center giving focus to the armband.

The final product is a sleek, bold armband that incorporates Johnson’s favorite parts of playing for the Timbers. It strikes a balance between incorporating elements of the Rose City and unique imagery from the Timbers’ kits. It showcases distinct badges of Portland soccer, but leaves no question that it is still a captain’s armband.

“It includes all of my favorite parts of playing here,” said Johnson. “This is a completely unique place to play soccer, and I think this armband reflects that.”

“Being team captain is the biggest honor and responsibility of my career—a dream come true.”

See the new armband in action this Saturday as the Timbers host the Houston Dynamo at JELD-WEN Field (7:30pm PT, ROOT SPORTS, 750 AM The Game / La Pantera 940 - Presented by Portland General Electric).