The Kansas City Chiefs’ appearance in Super Bowl LIV has led to an outpouring of team spirit literally across the world.
An effort by 41 Action News to identify members of Chiefs Kingdom, wherever they might be, has received responses from as far away as South Korea, the United Arab Emirates, Russia, South Africa and many other countries.
One of those far-afield fans, Chiefs supporter Duncan Smart, spoke with 41 Action News on Friday via Skype from his home in Edinburgh, Scotland.
“Up until a few years ago, if you wanted to buy certain merchandise, it was either Raiders, Bears, Cowboys and the big traditional teams,” he said. “Now, times are changing and it’s very different.”
For Smart, being part of Chiefs Kingdom began decades ago.
“The NFL started being shown in Scotland during the early '90s,” he said. “The only player whose name I recognized was Joe Montana and he had just joined the Chiefs.”
Years later, Smart helps lead the Arrowheads Abroad group on Facebook. The online community connects fans all around the globe and even organizes special gatherings from time to time.
For fans in other countries, following the team can require special dedication for certain games.
“There tends to be a lot of coffee on a Monday or Tuesday morning after a prime-time game,” Smart, who noted that late games kickoff around 1 a.m. in the United Kingdom, said. “My night tends to be going to bed early for a couple hours, setting the alarm, getting up and making a coffee.”
Other fans closer to home, like Kevin Marshall Jr., said being a part of Chiefs Kingdom means representing the team no matter where he goes, even if it's north Africa.
In pictures posted online, Marshall can be seen posing in Chiefs gear in front of the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt as well as in Israel.
“I love being able to go represent my team everywhere,” he said. “To walk through the city of Bethlehem and somebody comes over and knows who Patrick Mahomes is, that’s awesome.”
With the team set to play in its first Super Bowl in 50 years, Marshall said it was important for fans to cheer on their favorite team no matter where they live.
“If you’re a real fan, you’re proud of your team no matter what,” he said.