San Diego finally has a name for its new NASL team: 1904 FC.
Now, obviously the team wasn’t founded in 1904, nor was San Diego established in that year. It’s also not a nod to Benfica or Schalke 04, which were founded in 1904. So it may look like the club just picked a random date from a hundred years ago and tacked on FC at the end, continuing America’s long tradition of vaguely European names for soccer teams. But no, the name comes from the 19th letter of the alphabet (S) and the fourth (D).
Hang on, though. What if the name is actually a reference to the Will Ferrell movie Anchorman? In the 2004 film, Ferrell’s character claims the city of San Diego was “discovered by the Germans in 1904.”
The team says the idea for 1904 FC came from a fan, and we all know sports fans would never act in bad faith and choose a joke name for a team. Oh, wait, San Diego soccer fans already did that earlier this year, voting overwhelmingly in favor of “Footy McFooty Face” for a potential MLS club.
I find it entirely plausible that this unnamed fan thought 1904 would be an Anchorman reference subtle enough to slip under the club’s noses and reverse-engineered the alphabet explanation to make it happen.