FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – To his friends, he’s Andrew Allen, a 20-year-old junior who plays soccer at Brandeis University.
To the MLS community, he’s a New England Revolution legend that’s gotten better with age: Horse Guy.
Either way, Allen doesn’t mind if his identity is now known, and he doesn’t plan to part with his horse mask any time soon. After all, he said, he’s in too deep, with the Revs’ broadcast team of Brad Feldman and Paul Mariner regularly giving him shout-outs on air.
“It's been my thing, my niche,” Allen says. “There's always people around me who have little kids and they ask if I brought it. I never want to disappoint them. But it's also a good luck charm or whatever. Since I've been back from college I've been able to go to more and more games, and now the Revs haven't lost at home in like 11 games. I'm pretty sure I've been to all 11.
Superstition aside, Allen said his idea came around in 2014, when he asked his parents for a horse mask for his birthday. They, understandably, pushed back some, but eventually he got the mask to go along with a friend’s zebra mask.
That summer, the Revs were in the midst of a seven-game losing streak, and Allen decided to bring the mask to one game. They got on the stadium's video screen, everyone in their section got a good laugh from it, and the rest, well, is history.
“I woke up the next day and my phone was blowing up,” Allen recalls. “It was so crazy, that I had to bring it to the next game and they won and they went on a huge run to the MLS Cup final. I had to keep wearing it.”
As the legend grew, Allen made a Twitter account and almost got into a Twitter spat with @NYCFCPigeon, a New York City fan whose mask he joked would give him nightmares.
But, for a kid born in 1996 and whose dad has been a Revs’ season ticket holder since that year, it’ll be hard to part with the “Horse Man” character.
The only way he envisions that happening, he said, is if the Revs enter coveted territory.
“I would only retire it if they ever won an MLS Cup,” Allen says.
Until then, Horse Guy lives on.