Gothamite

North American Pro Soccer 2019

Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, Brandon9485 said:

Sacramento was seen as one of the biggest challengers to St. Louis for a franchise, but if they don’t get one soon; Charlotte, San Diego, and Phoenix could be tough competition. 

 

Charlotte is the real competition there... primarily because of money.

David Tepper's net worth is $11.6 billion. That makes him the sixth-richest pro sports owner in the world, the fifth-richest amongst owners of U.S.-based franchises, and would mark him as the second-wealthiest Major League Soccer owner after Dietrich Mateschitz of the New York Red Bulls. You combine Tepper's wealth with the fact that Charlotte is home to the headquarters of five FORTUNE 500 companies (ten in the FORTUNE 1000) and you have the reason that the market has suddenly leapt into the MLS expansion conversation. It also doesn't hurt that Charlotte, though less populous than either Phoenix or San Diego, is growing at a faster pace - both as a city and metro area - than either of the southwest markets. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Brandon9485 said:

 

A lot of what you’ve said here could be said for St. Louis too. I wasn’t in the room, but the reporting gave the impression that if MLS passed on St. Louis this time, they’d never get St. Louis because the pending stadium plan was dependent on it. Sacramento was seen as one of the biggest challengers to St. Louis for a franchise, but if they don’t get one soon; Charlotte, San Diego, and Phoenix could be tough competition. 

 

Members of the Taylor family have also said as much. They made it clear that their capital investment in this project wasn't going to sit around forever. If MLS passed them by, it wasn't going to happen, at least with their involvement.

 

Of course, that's a pretty common bargaining tactic for people with leverage in a deal. Regardless, it worked.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Brian in Boston said:

 

Charlotte is the real competition there... primarily because of money.

David Tepper's net worth is $11.6 billion. That makes him the sixth-richest pro sports owner in the world, the fifth-richest amongst owners of U.S.-based franchises, and would mark him as the second-wealthiest Major League Soccer owner after Dietrich Mateschitz of the New York Red Bulls. You combine Tepper's wealth with the fact that Charlotte is home to the headquarters of five FORTUNE 500 companies (ten in the FORTUNE 1000) and you have the reason that the market has suddenly leapt into the MLS expansion conversation. It also doesn't hurt that Charlotte, though less populous than either Phoenix or San Diego, is growing at a faster pace - both as a city and metro area - than either of the southwest markets. 

The way things have been going, I'd be shocked if Charlotte wasn't announced as the next expansion team, and Sacramento might get left in the dust, which is a shame, I think NorCal could use another team. Ideally, St. Louis' jumping doesn't mean anything for Sactown and they are awarded one of the remaining two slots, along with Charlotte. 

 

Personally, I feel like Charlotte is the most likely city to get a team, followed by Sacramento, San Diego, then Phoenix. That also happens to be the order in which I'd award the teams given the chance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well if the league eventually grows to 40 clubs, then all major metro areas should be covered. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I’m glad we got a team now. I’ve been waiting for this news for the past ten years. I remember when we tried to land a team for the first time, an ownership group headed by Scott Gallagher made their bid, with a stadium plan in nearby Collinsville, IL, as it was in vogue at the time to build stadiums in a city's metro area, instead of the city proper (see Fire's SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview, not Chicago, and Union's Talen Energy Stadium in Chester, not Philly.) 

 

I cannot describe the elation I feel after all these years of hems, haws, I dunnos, and maybes, but even then, I kinda hoped there’d be an announcement where both Sactown and the Lou got teams, and spot no. 30 is still up for grabs. I was also hoping that last spot would go to either Phoenix or Las Vegas, and then this thing about Charlotte came up...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not often you get to watch a game where the team with a man advantage for 84 minutes is lucky to come away with a single point.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That’s one of the best own goals I’ve ever seen. I burst out laughing again with each replay. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What a season it’s been. Clinched a playoff spot in mid-August. 

 

This team has been so much fun. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Rockstar Matt said:

What a season it’s been. Clinched a playoff spot in mid-August. 

 

This team has been so much fun. 

 

The playoffs will definitely be interesting with the one and done single elimination format. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Wings said:

 

The playoffs will definitely be interesting with the one and done single elimination format. 

 

For sure. I, for one, am very nervous about it. So far in our young history, LAFC does not have a good showing in big games. And in single elimination, anything can happen. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

I've stated it before, and I'll reiterate it now. If Charlotte jumps Sacramento for that 29th spot, after all of the complete :censored:ing bull :censored: we've been dealing with for the past few seasons, I'm absolutely and completely done with this garbage ass, second rate league. 

 

I don't care what anyone says at this point. This is absolutely a case of this league moving the goalposts, and it's to the point where it's beyond insulting to the Sacramento bid and their fanbase. This league is run by some of the absolute biggest liars I've ever encountered. 

 

 

 

 

 

"Exclusive negotiations". Suck my :censored:, "Major League" Soccer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At this rate I'm expecting San Diego to be the 4th club in California. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Bucfan56 said:
This is absolutely a case of this league moving the goalposts, and it's to the point where it's beyond insulting to the Sacramento bid and their fanbase. This league is run by some of the absolute biggest liars I've ever encountered.


I'll concede that I truly feel sorry for the Sacramento Republic FC fanbase. From day one, you bought-in to what Warren Smith and Joe Wagoner set-out to build in your community. To my mind, the energy and atmosphere that you created is what vaulted Sacramento into the conversation regarding MLS expansion.    

Now, as for the current ownership group behind Sacramento Republic's MLS bid? I have a far more difficult time feeling that they've been insulted during the expansion process.

The ownership/leadership group that currently exists behind Sacramento's bid to enter Major League Soccer is different - I'd argue significantly so - than that which launched Sacramento Republic FC back in 2012. How so? Well, from everything I've heard from Republic-loving friends in the Sacramento area, Smith and Wagoner were the heart and soul of the club. Their efforts gave birth to the team, seeing the organization from the December 2012 moment when the United Soccer League announced that Sacramento was being granted an expansion franchise to the first ball being kicked in USL competition in April of 2014. They - and the organization that they put in place - invested the blood, sweat, and tears necessary to build the entity that earned the passionate devotion of its supporters. 

Kevin Nagle? He wouldn't obtain controlling interest of Sacramento Republic FC until 21 months into the franchise's existence. And, frankly, that's where Sacramento Republic's struggles began. From where I'm sitting, if Sacramento should eventually fail to land a Major League Soccer franchise, Kevin Nagle will have to bear a significant portion of the responsibility.

Was Kevin Nagle's investment in Sacramento Republic FC helpful? Sure. After all, I have no doubt that Warren Smith and Joe Wagoner would concede that they didnn't - and don't -  possess Kevin Nagle's financial resources. That said, if we're being honest, Kevin Nagle doesn't possess the financial resources necessary to be the lead investor behind a Major League Soccer expansion bid. Truth be told, he never did... at least not in the MLS of 2014 onward. The league's rapid growth - particularly in the realm of perceived franchise value - may yet prove to be unsustainable, but there are plenty of people with pockets deeper than Nagle's ready, willing, and - most importantly - able to buy-in. So, Nagle, from the outset of his involvement with Sacramento Republic, was faced with having to round-up wealthier investors to join the Sacramento-to-MLS bid... particularly, a lead investor. So why did it take so long? Well, maybe people just didn't see the upside in doing business with him on this venture.  

Hear me out. Reportedly, Nagle nickel-and-dimed Warren Smith and Joe Wagoner over the value of Sacramento Republic FC and the club's brand. That's why the coup d'équipe on the day of the official expansion bid submission to MLS took place. Kunal Merchant - a former PR man for ex-Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson - submitted the bid on behalf of Sacramento. Not Sacramento Republic FC, mind you... simply Sacramento. And the corporate entity submitting the bid? Sac Soccer & Entertainment Holdings, LLC. This was Nagle's outfit, which had yet to officially acquire Sacramento Republic FC. The bid package was devoid of any Sacramento Republic FC iconography. At the same time, Nagle stripped any reference to Sacramento Republic from his Twitter handle and Twitter bio just prior to the bid being submitted. It was a power-play on Nagle's part. He thought that Sacramento-to-MLS was a fait accompli with or without Smith and Wagoner. He hoped that MLS brass would be impressed by his bold move to cut the legs out from under Smith and Wagoner via submitting a bid without them. He believed that MLS would simply award an expansion franchise to Sacramento based upon the size of its TV market, the shovel-ready stadium plan in the Railyards, and the then-recently-announced addition of Meg Whitman and Jed York as potential partners in the ownership structure of an MLS franchise. He expected that once he'd been awarded an MLS franchise for Sacramento, Smith and Wagoner would simply concede to finalizing the transfer of control of both the franchise and its intellectual property to him at whatever price-point he was willing to pay.

In retrospect, Nagle overplayed his hand. Once news broke that the Sacramento MLS expansion bid had been submitted without the participation of Smith and Wagoner, everything went sideways. News outlets and social media exploded with stories of a falling out between Nagle and the co-founders of Sacramento Republic FC. Damage control had to be done by the likes of Mayor Darrell Steinberg. Pro sports expansion bids - particularly those hoping to result in franchises being granted - are supposed to be seamless, polished and easily-consumed. This was anything but. When the Sacramento bid should have been flaunting a united front, it looked - instead - dysfunctional. Worst of all, in a league where much of the explosive growth had been fueled by leveraging the enthusiasm of grassroots supporter movements, here was a story in which a pair of club founders who'd managed to engage with, and grow alongside of, just such a movement were seemingly being marginalized by a money-man who had bought into an already flourishing enterprise.              

Truth be told, that episode could now become the defining moment in Sacramento Republic FC history. Nagle has never managed to entirely right the ship after that gaffe. Yes, Nagle eventually secured the USL franchise and its intellectual property, but at a cost to his reputation with both MLS and potential lead investors.  Just over 2-1/2 years on from his gambit of breaking with Sacramento Republic FC - albeit, temporarily - and submitting an expansion bid to MLS on his own, Nagle and Sacramento are still waiting to be granted a franchise in the league. Further, his rumored insistence on maintaining at least 51% majority control in Sacramento Republic FC, as well as being less than accommodating with regard to the opinions and suggestions of other partners, is reportedly what spurred the departure of Meg Whitman and Jed York from the ownership team. Following their departure, it seems that there was no end to the number of times that Nagle was "closing in on", "so close", "very close" to landing a lead investor for the Sacramento Republic FC MLS bid. Again, why did it take so long?

Finally, thankfully, Ron Burkle agreed to become the lead investor in the Sacramento Republic FC bid. It's clear that Burkle is going to be the majority owner of a Sacramento-based MLS franchise should the league grant the current bid an expansion team. There's absolutely no way that Burkle was going to agree to play second-banana to Nagle. Still, that - in and of itself - could now be causing problems for the bid? Why? Because, Nagle - figuring that whatever "whale" investor he eventually brought on was going to end up footing-the-bill for most of the expansion fee - was likely willing to tell MLS anything that they wanted to hear with regard to the amount of said fee... even as it was steadily increasing to a price-point of $200 million. Now that Burkle's on-board as the bid's lead investor, he might be inclined to engage in some pushback on certain issues... particularly those that are going to directly impact his bottom-line. For instance, things like Major League Soccer's steadily-increasing expansion fee. Now, I'm not privy to any inside information that Burkle has voiced a reluctance to meet Major League Soccer's going expansion price point. I only bring up the possibility because, if he were to voice a problem with the current MLS entry fee while other expansion hopefuls weren't doing so, it might negatively impact Sacramento's prospects amongst potential bids.

Bottom line? This is modern professional sports that we're talking about here. Money makes the world go 'round. The minute a guy like David Tepper, with $11.6 billion at his disposal,  shows up and says that he's interested in joining your league, he's not only going to be heard... he's going to be granted a franchise. And, despite it not being polite, he's likely going to jump people in the queue... including Ron Burkle and his $1.5 billion.

St. Louis getting in ahead of Sacramento? Well, Jim Kavanaugh ($1.9 billion net worth) is part of the ownership group, along with several members of the Taylor Family (Enterprise Holdings... St. Louis royalty). Plus, it's as close as the United States comes to a soccer "legacy" city. Still, I can understand that one stinging.

What can I say? Professional soccer is now, at long last, on par with North America's "Big Four" sports leagues. Unfortunately, it's achieved parity in some of pro sports least savory aspects.

I have my fingers crossed for you folks. I think Sacramento would make a phenomenal addition to the league. For what it's worth, I don't think MLS is stopping at 30 teams. That said, if I were Burkle, I'd be doing everything in my power to make sure that Sacramento Republic FC landed slot #29 or #30. I dont believe that it is  going to get any less expensive to secure a spot in MLS beyond that point. Equally important, if not moreso, I fear it would  be awfully difficult - and understandably so - to maintain the enthusiasm in the marketplace if this saga is prolonged much more.                 
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Bucfan56 said:

 

 

I've stated it before, and I'll reiterate it now. If Charlotte jumps Sacramento for that 29th spot, after all of the complete :censored:ing bull :censored: we've been dealing with for the past few seasons, I'm absolutely and completely done with this garbage ass, second rate league. 

 

I don't care what anyone says at this point. This is absolutely a case of this league moving the goalposts, and it's to the point where it's beyond insulting to the Sacramento bid and their fanbase. This league is run by some of the absolute biggest liars I've ever encountered. 

 

 

 

 

 

"Exclusive negotiations". Suck my :censored:, "Major League" Soccer

As a Crew fan, we merely tolerate MLS, because our other option is no soccer instead. And it's ridiculous how much the fans of Sacramento Republic keep getting stepped on by the teams that were behind them in line. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Brian in Boston said:


I'll concede that I truly feel sorry for the Sacramento Republic FC fanbase. From day one, you bought-in to what Warren Smith and Joe Wagoner set-out to build in your community. To my mind, the energy and atmosphere that you created is what vaulted Sacramento into the conversation regarding MLS expansion.    

Now, as for the current ownership group behind Sacramento Republic's MLS bid? I have a far more difficult time feeling that they've been insulted during the expansion process.

The ownership/leadership group that currently exists behind Sacramento's bid to enter Major League Soccer is different - I'd argue significantly so - than that which launched Sacramento Republic FC back in 2012. How so? Well, from everything I've heard from Republic-loving friends in the Sacramento area, Smith and Wagoner were the heart and soul of the club. Their efforts gave birth to the team, seeing the organization from the December 2012 moment when the United Soccer League announced that Sacramento was being granted an expansion franchise to the first ball being kicked in USL competition in April of 2014. They - and the organization that they put in place - invested the blood, sweat, and tears necessary to build the entity that earned the passionate devotion of its supporters. 

Kevin Nagle? He wouldn't obtain controlling interest of Sacramento Republic FC until 21 months into the franchise's existence. And, frankly, that's where Sacramento Republic's struggles began. From where I'm sitting, if Sacramento should eventually fail to land a Major League Soccer franchise, Kevin Nagle will have to bear a significant portion of the responsibility.

Was Kevin Nagle's investment in Sacramento Republic FC helpful? Sure. After all, I have no doubt that Warren Smith and Joe Wagoner would concede that they didnn't - and don't -  possess Kevin Nagle's financial resources. That said, if we're being honest, Kevin Nagle doesn't possess the financial resources necessary to be the lead investor behind a Major League Soccer expansion bid. Truth be told, he never did... at least not in the MLS of 2014 onward. The league's rapid growth - particularly in the realm of perceived franchise value - may yet prove to be unsustainable, but there are plenty of people with pockets deeper than Nagle's ready, willing, and - most importantly - able to buy-in. So, Nagle, from the outset of his involvement with Sacramento Republic, was faced with having to round-up wealthier investors to join the Sacramento-to-MLS bid... particularly, a lead investor. So why did it take so long? Well, maybe people just didn't see the upside in doing business with him on this venture.  

Hear me out. Reportedly, Nagle nickel-and-dimed Warren Smith and Joe Wagoner over the value of Sacramento Republic FC and the club's brand. That's why the coup d'équipe on the day of the official expansion bid submission to MLS took place. Kunal Merchant - a former PR man for ex-Sacramento mayor Kevin Johnson - submitted the bid on behalf of Sacramento. Not Sacramento Republic FC, mind you... simply Sacramento. And the corporate entity submitting the bid? Sac Soccer & Entertainment Holdings, LLC. This was Nagle's outfit, which had yet to officially acquire Scaramento Republic FC. The bid package was devoid of any Sacramento Republic FC iconography. At the same time, Nagle stripped any reference to Sacramento Republic from his Twitter handle and Twitter bio just prior to the bid being submitted. It was a power-play on Nagle's part. He thought that Sacramento-to-MLS was a fait accompli with or without Smith and Wagoner. He hoped that MLS brass would be impressed by his bold move to cut the legs out from under Smith and Wagoner via submitting a bid without them. He believed that MLS would simply award an expansion franchise to Sacramento based upon the size of its TV market, the shovel-ready stadium plan in the Railyards, and the then-recently-announced addition of Meg Whitman and Jed York as potential partners in the ownership structure of an MLS franchise. He expected that once he'd been awarded an MLS franchise for Sacramento, Smith and Wagoner would simply concede to finalizing the transfer of control of both the franchise and its intellectual property to him at whatever price-point he was willing to pay.

In retrospect, Nagle overplayed his hand. Once news broke that the Sacramento MLS expansion bid had been submitted without the participation of Smith and Wagoner, everything went sideways. News outlets and social media exploded with stories of a falling out between Nagle and the co-founders of Sacramento Republic FC. Damage control had to be done by the likes of Mayor Darrell Steinberg. Pro sports expansion bids - particularly those hoping to result in franchises being granted - are supposed to be seamless, polished and easily-consumed. This was anything but. When the Sacramento bid should have been flaunting a united front, it looked - instead - dysfunctional. Worst of all, in a league where much of the explosive growth had been fueled by leveraging the enthusiasm of grassroots supporter movements, here was a story in which a pair of club founders who'd managed to engage with, and grow alongside of, just such a movement were seemingly being marginalized by a money-man who had bought into an already flourishing enterprise.              

Truth be told, that episode could now become the defining moment in Sacramento Republic FC history. Nagle has never managed to entirely right the ship after that gaffe. Yes, Nagle eventually secured the USL franchise and its intellectual property, but at a cost to his reputation with both MLS and potential lead investors.  Just over 2-1/2 years on from his gambit of breaking with Sacramento Republic FC - albeit, temporarily - and submitting an expansion bid to MLS on his own, Nagle and Sacramento are still waiting to be granted a franchise in the league. Further, his rumored insistence on maintaining at least 51% majority control in Sacramento Republic FC, as well as being less than accommodating with regard to the opinions and suggestions of other partners, is reportedly what spurred the departure of Meg Whitman and Jed York from the ownership team. Following their departure, it seems that there was no end to the number of times that Nagle was "closing in on", "so close", "very close" to landing a lead investor for the Sacramento Republic FC MLS bid. Again, why did it take so long?

Finally, thankfully, Ron Burkle agreed to become the lead investor in the Sacramento Republic FC bid. It's clear that Burkle is going to be the majority owner of a Sacramento-based MLS franchise should the league grant the current bid an expansion team. There's absolutely no way that Burkle was going to agree to play second-banana to Nagle. Still, that - in and of itself - could now be causing problems for the bid? Why? Because, Nagle - figuring that whatever "whale" investor he eventually brought on was going to end up footing-the-bill for most of the expansion fee - was likely willing to tell MLS anything that they wanted to hear with regard to the amount of said fee... even as it was steadily increasing to a price-point of $200 million. Now that Burkle's on-board as the bid's lead investor, he might be inclined to engage in some pushback on certain issues... particularly those that are going to directly impact his bottom-line. For instance, things like Major League Soccer's steadily-increasing expansion fee. Now, I'm not privy to any inside information that Burkle has voiced a reluctance to meet Major League Soccer's going expansion price point. I only bring up the possibility because, if he were to voice a problem with the current MLS entry fee while other expansion hopefuls weren't doing so, it might negatively impact Sacramento's prospects amongst potential bids.

Bottom line? This is modern professional sports that we're talking about here. Money makes the world go 'round. The minute a guy like David Tepper, with $11.6 billion at his disposal,  shows up and says that he's interested in joining your league, he's not only going to be heard... he's going to be granted a franchise. And, despite it not being polite, he's likely going to jump people in the queue... including Ron Burkle and his $1.5 billion.

St. Louis getting in ahead of Sacramento? Well, Jim Kavanaugh ($1.9 billion net worth) is part of the ownership group, along with several members of the Taylor Family (Enterprise Holdings... St. Louis royalty). Plus, it's as close as the United States comes to a soccer "legacy" city. Still, I can understand that one stinging.

What can I say? Professional soccer is now, at long last, on par with North America's "Big Four" sports leagues. Unfortunately, it's achieved parity in some of pro sports least savory aspects.

I have my fingers crossed for you folks. I think Sacramento would make a phenomenal addition to the league. For what it's worth, I don't think MLS is stopping at 30 teams. That said, if I were Burkle, I'd be doing everything in my power to make sure that Sacramento Republic FC landed slot #29 or #30. I dont believe that it is  going to get any less expensive to secure a spot in MLS beyond that point. Equally important, if not moreso, I fear it would  be awfully difficult - and understandably so - to maintain the enthusiasm in the marketplace if this saga is prolonged much more.                 
 

 

Edit: I’m gonna PM you this first part.

 

I know now I get a little crazy about this sometimes, but this is something that is very personal to me. To see the people who have worked so hard on all of this basically flapping in the breeze with no idea what their future is going to look like is hard to watch. A lot of these people staked their future on this project and I can’t even properly communicate the level of stress this waiting game is causing. 

 

 

Also, this is Sacramento’s last shot at establishing itself as a feasible pro sports town. I’ve always had this dream of seeing Sacramento as a legitimate multi-sport town, and this is the type of project that could really catapult the city in that direction. I’ve been wanting that my entire life. If this falls through, that’s it. We have the perpetually irrelevant Kings, a PCL baseball team, and that’s where it stops. That’s all we’ll EVER have. That’s what’s so heartbreaking about all of this so far. We’re SO CLOSE, and it means SO MUCH. 

 

Really, Sacramento has always gotten ripped on by the rest of the state for being flat, hot, and boring. But the truth is, this area is AWESOME, and it has so much promise. I’m not from Sacramento but I moved here and made a life here because I love it, and see how much potential it has. It’s always felt like home. I’m just over seeing it toyed with by people who ultimately don’t give two :censored:s about it.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you love the sport, you'll still watch it. I'm an NBA fan.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, DG_Now said:

If you love the sport, you'll still watch it. I'm an NBA fan.

 

Difference being that you have choice when it comes to soccer. I guess you could watch college basketball, but only so many people are going to watch people forced to be amateurs by a garbage system play at a local rec center in Jacksonville, Florida on ESPN+.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.