Man City Owners Pondering Bid for NY II; Red Bull Having Second Thoughts?

Discussion in 'MLS: News & Analysis' started by triplet1, Nov 20, 2012.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. kenntomasch

    kenntomasch BigSoccer Yellow Card

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 1999
    Location:
    El desierto
    Club:
    FC Tampa Bay Rowdies
    Country:
    United States
    By what metric? I'm asking because I'm genuinely curious. How has branding the team with the name of an energy drink actually failed, past "I don't like it and they haven't won an MLS Cup?"

    Is it "They've had a revolving door of coaches and made bad personnel decisions?" Because (quiet as it's kept) not only did the same franchise have that exact same MO for years under its old moniker, they're not the only club in the league for which this is true.

    And that's a fair enough opinion to hold, I guess. But the point of my original post was that we've moved on. That discussion was from 2006. It's not breaking new ground to bring that up. If they get out of MLS because they don't feel they're getting a return on their investment, fine, that's a business decision and one they're entitled to make. But if they don't get out of MLS, they're still going to have a team branded after an energy drink and asking if it's good or bad for the league isn't going to make them change their mind. It's pointless. We had that discussion six years ago.
    Zoidberg and MasterShake29 repped this.


  2. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2000
    Location:
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Country:
    United States
    [​IMG]
    phillypride, xbhaskarx, fuzzx and 3 others repped this.
  3. Soyrizo

    Soyrizo Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2010
    Location:
    Dallas
    Club:
    FC Dallas
    Country:
    United States
    Failure because they have owners who have the money to sponsor people skydiving from space but can't find those resources to get 25K people out to NJ in what's supposed to be one of the biggest markets in the league with an above average team. Something isn't right, they're completely underperforming... but with that amount of resources and in that market it shouldn't be acceptable.
    aztec21bas repped this.
  4. kenntomasch

    kenntomasch BigSoccer Yellow Card

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 1999
    Location:
    El desierto
    Club:
    FC Tampa Bay Rowdies
    Country:
    United States
    And I don't think the name of the team has everything to do with whether they can get a higher average of people out to games than any market ever outside of Seattle. And whether or not they sponsored the space skydive has zero to do with their MLS efforts.

    They may not be particularly adept at marketing a soccer team and selling tickets to it. And that may have been the case if they were Empire FC.


  5. kenntomasch

    kenntomasch BigSoccer Yellow Card

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 1999
    Location:
    El desierto
    Club:
    FC Tampa Bay Rowdies
    Country:
    United States
    Seriously. You're either trolling or an idiot.
  6. dark knight

    dark knight Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 1999
    By the metric which I thought was their goal - to transform the franchise both on and off the field in terms of building a huge following and a super club.

    There is a lot to dislike beyond the two things you mentioned - it seems clear to me that they have been incredibly tone deaf about what matters on the ground, it seems clear to me that they put marketing the brand above all other concerns, it seems clear to me that hard core fans struggle mightily in devoting themselves completely to the club which is a major barrier to passionate support - and the proof is in the pudding - horrendously bad attendance, dispassionate players and coaches who give a crap about the team, and a franchise that has been showing signs of trying to do an about face and become penny pinchers.

    But why can't we evaluate the experiment now that we've got some time under the belt? The discussion is now closed because we talked about it 6 years ago? Voicing displeasure about it isn't completely pointless - I tend to want to believe the rumors that Garber realizes it was a mistake and it's a barrier to being a more respected league.
    FlashMan repped this.
  7. RapidStorm

    RapidStorm Member+

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2005
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    Nice try putting words in my mouth.

    I said it's not an apt comparison because of the ethnic overtones. I did not say that it's the reason Chivas USA has been, on the whole, a pretty bad experiment - though it is one of many causes.
    Which you can get from any owner in any league - if you need an example, Kraft in NE and his relationship with the Pats vs. with the Revs.

    Vergara, without question, did this and this is part of the ethnic pandering component I mentioned earlier. Without seeing how City will brand/market/run the club, it is far too early to claim "this issue will exist with any Man City"-owned club.

    The concept of a feeder club is clearly something Chivas desired. However, you're going to have to point to an exact phrase in that news release where City says they intend on using other "franchises" (their term) as feeders, because otherwise you're simply projecting based on an apples-to-oranges comparison. Could they make the club a feeder club? Sure. Have they signaled that's the intent? No.
  8. dark knight

    dark knight Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 1999
    I used to feel this way - and can't totally disagree with you. I used to argue that if you polled people in NJ, many wouldn't even know it's named after a drink. But the problem is - you just can't separate the motive for the name and the name itself. Even if RBNY were only concerned with developing American players (hehe) and building a winning franchise which clearly is not the case, as a die hard fan, it is an ever-present barrier to lifetime devotion to the team - it's not a minor issue.
    FlashMan and Flex Buffchest repped this.
  9. kenntomasch

    kenntomasch BigSoccer Yellow Card

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 1999
    Location:
    El desierto
    Club:
    FC Tampa Bay Rowdies
    Country:
    United States
    It might be that that takes more than six years. It might be that in MLS, that can't be done. "Super clubs" may not exist on these shores simply by virtue of the setup of the league.

    Are they more relevant in their market now than they were? Henry helped in that regard, didn't it? Have they been transformed in some respects since 2006? They're not playing in front of 5,000 people at the Meadowlands, so there's that (even though they didn't start the process, they have completed it). They did get Henry (though they did get Marquez and a bunch of other stiffs as well, fair enough) and they did make an MLS Cup final. It may be either that true transformation is slightly less spectacular than you envision.

    And that was the case when they were the MetroStars, wasn't it? And it's very likely that would be the case whether they were the Red Bulls or Empire FC or the New York Gothams or had stayed the MetroStars, wouldn't it? I mean, you'd be ascribing a lot of power to the name and less to the (lack of) acumen of the people running the show, right?

    The original person to whom I responded wasn't evaluating the experiment. He wasn't going any deeper than the superficial one-liners we had six years ago. That's what I had a problem with. You and I have discussed it more deeply in the last handful of posts than most did then or have in the intervening years.

    That franchise sucks. We stipulate to that. But "being named after an energy drink," which is as deep as the original person went, is a discussion we had six years ago. If we're going to be a community that discusses the game, let's go deeper than that, shall we?
    phillypride and Jasonma repped this.
  10. dark knight

    dark knight Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 1999
    Those are all fair points - and like I said, I've gone from keeping an open mind about it as you are doing to feeling pretty strongly that lifetime/hard core devotion to a club is a pretty important element to a successful sports franchise in the long term. While you may be able to fill RBA temporarily with casual fans, I believe true devotion is going to remain elusive.

    NY2 may help shed some light on the differences between RBNY and MetroMedia - because while I agree that in many ways the disenchantment with the current owners closely resembles what has gone on in the past, I still think when push comes to shove fans would be much less inclined to jump ship on the former (although obviously an unprovable hypothesis).

    Just one person's opinion who sincerely tried to go all in as a RBNY fan and failed. I'm a season ticket holder and will be one going forward, but the likelihood that I'll jump ship to FC Cosmos NYC City remains high.
  11. Haig

    Haig Member+

    Joined:
    May 14, 2000
    Location:
    METROSTARS
    Club:
    --other--
    As much as people can insist that this has been discussed to death, it hasn't. I'm a supporter of this team from before it even took the field, and I will say this: the name puts a ceiling on the support for the team in a way that incompetent management does not. Incompetent management does lasting damage, but can be replaced and even forgotten, but that name is an obstacle for a subset of potential fans. I love the sport but if I hadn't already been on board, I assure you I wouldn't go near a team named after Red Bull.

    Like it or not, the Logan-era credibility problems that affected MLS have held on longest in the NY area. Logan is long gone, and it's obvious that there is no obstacle to doing things the "right" way in MLS, but this team is STILL not doing things the right way. The clamor for the Cosmos is all about returning to what folks perceive was the era when professional soccer was credible in the NY area. I get it, even though we all know (a) that the Cosmos were a total zoo and (b) a team built from scratch can succeed in MLS if it puts soccer first.

    The insistence that Red Bull isn't the problem just misses the point. Red Bull IS the problem because calling a team "Red Bull" is totally indicative of the fact that this outfit doesn't put soccer first. That comes across in everything they do. Don't think that soccer fans-- or any sports fan, for that matter-- can't pick up on that.
    Barbieri, AmeriSnob, Zoti and 8 others repped this.
  12. Soccergodlss

    Soccergodlss Member+

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2004
    Location:
    Houston
    Club:
    FC Kaiserslautern
    Country:
    United States
    It would make it worse for everyone not named LA or NY. And more importantly, this is not England.
  13. MasterShake29

    MasterShake29 Member+

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2001
    Location:
    Jersey City, NJ
    Club:
    New York Red Bulls
    Country:
    United States
    In someways, any owner that puts "soccer first" is the exact person I don't want running my club, because it won't last very long.

    Everyone agrees Red Bull have not been the greatest owners in the history of world sport, though in some ways they get held to an insane standard. It's not like they've been the worst either. They got the stadium over the finish line, and have tried to put a good product on the field (not always successfully, but the key is they're trying).

    There's no guarantee the next owner, should there be one, would do any better.

    And we're now three pages into a tangent started over a near-throwaway line in the British press.
    Ismitje and Zoidberg repped this.
  14. Flex Buffchest

    Flex Buffchest Member

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2010
    Location:
    Orange County, California
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Country:
    United States
    I didn't get any inclination that the owners of Man City were going to buy the NY team and name it Manchester City USA or make it a feeder team for Man City or anything. So, until that is suggested, I don't think we should get our panties in a bunch. And I really can't see Garber and co. letting their baby used for such a thing. If they're advocating so hard to get another team in NY, I doubt they'd let it be used to feed players to Man City. Because obviously they feel MLS needs a better presence in New York, and having a Man City USA would not do the job. If wealthy owners can come in and help raise the profile of MLS, I'm all for it. As a Galaxy season ticket holder, I have an invested interest in seeing the league grow. As much as I despise San Jose, I'm glad they're getting their own stadium and expanding. It's only better for the rivalry and the league as a whole. Chivas USA though, you guys can leave. :)
    Zoti repped this.
  15. kenntomasch

    kenntomasch BigSoccer Yellow Card

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 1999
    Location:
    El desierto
    Club:
    FC Tampa Bay Rowdies
    Country:
    United States
    I think part of that is about our culture as it pertains to this sport. Obviously, there are far more "devoted" fans of MLS teams than there were in 2002 and in 1996 because time has a tendency to grow those things. We're still trotting (not still crawling, not yet running) as a soccer culture, and teams that establish roots and stay over the long haul eventually become more devotion-worthy. At least it seems that way.

    Until they do something silly, right? ;)

    Subset. We may differ as to the size of that subset. Because people still go.

    (As a digression, one not specifically related to the quoted text above, or even to the person who wrote it...This idea that there's a group over here who are "real fans" and if you think one way, you're in that group and therefore you get to look down on those people over there who go but don't chant or don't sway or don't chant YSA or who don't pick fights with people wearing the other team's shirt is nonsense. Just because someone has a different agenda than you do for going to a game or experiencing soccer doesn't make you more worthy than they are.)

    And "(Mighty) Ducks" is a stupid name and an example of Disney synergy whoring branding, yet there are people who still go to their games and - I'm guessing - enjoy actually watching hockey (when it's actually played) without getting too deeply into that. And "Real Salt Lake" is a stupid name and an example of Europosing and has no indigenous value whatsoever, but it's "authentic*" and so that gets a bit of a pass, it seems.

    I get your point, that the fact they branded their team after their core business - as they did in Austria - is indicative of their priorities. And it may very well be that you can't divorce the two (the name and the ineptitude). But I think you could have a dipshit name or even a corporate name and if you had a freaking clue about how to run a club, a lot of that would be mitigated.

    At some point, it becomes, "Do you want to watch live freaking soccer or don't you?"



    *"Authentic" = ripped off from somewhere else, preferably Europe in general if not England specifically.
  16. kenntomasch

    kenntomasch BigSoccer Yellow Card

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 1999
    Location:
    El desierto
    Club:
    FC Tampa Bay Rowdies
    Country:
    United States
    I find myself agreeing with you (though, while I think it's true they're held to an insane standard, I do think they're bad owners, more inept than evil).

    The idea (one that seems to be joined at the hip to the "real fans" argument many times) that a "soccer first" owner is always preferable...well, that's insane, I think. We romanticize the idea of the fan-first, for-the-good-of-the-game, kindly, community-minded, only-doing-this-for-the kids owner who, for the most part, doesn't exist and hasn't for years.

    Fans think like fans, not like business owners. Fans haven’t lost millions trying to stabilize a club and make it profitable. Fans always want to run clubs, but they only want to do the sexy things like pick the colors and design the badge and fire the coach and decide who plays left back. They’ve never had to make tough financial decisions in a public arena with emotional customers (and, no, I’m sorry, whatever emotional investment you’ve made pales in comparison to the actual money people lose in creating a team for your entertainment). And they wouldn't be able to.

    Finding the right people to "correctly" (whatever your personal definition of that is) run a soccer club in this country is not easy. Most of the talented people, over the years, who could have gone to work for MLS teams found it much more lucrative and much easier to go work in sports that don't require banging your head against a wall for eight or more hours a day. Luckily, soccer in general and MLS in particular have made strides, to the point where that may not be as true as it once was. But just like we don't get our pick of the best athletes, we don't get our pick of the best potential front-office talent, either.

    Rip on RBNY if you want, but the league is populated with ineptitude in a lot of places. The really good people and clubs stand out because it's fairly easy to.
  17. Michael K.

    Michael K. Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 1999
    Location:
    There or Thereabouts
    Country:
    United States
    Quite a straw man you've built yourself there.
    Zoti, FlashMan, Haig and 1 other person repped this.
  18. dark knight

    dark knight Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 1999
    I was a season ticket holder through the Metrostars years so not sure I deserve that even as a joke.



    This is the MLS survivalist argument which also belongs in 2006.

    Thierry Henry and Rafa Marquez barely moved the needle here. Thierry Henry wears a Metrostars armband. In my opinion, these two statements are compelling arguments why RBNY will continue to fail.
    Zoti, FlashMan and Haig repped this.
  19. Allez RSL

    Allez RSL Member+

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2007
    Location:
    El Llano Estacado
    I think this is right. The Man City owners are interested in promoting Man City -- they want to promote themselves. And seem to think that they can do that in MLS?

    Also, I'm surprised that Kenn thinks that Real Salt Lake gets a pass on its name. I don't think you'd find many RSL or MLS fans who don't think it's at least a little stupid. And I've never encountered anyone who considers it "authentic."
    Bulldog SLC and Flex Buffchest repped this.
  20. dark knight

    dark knight Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 1999
    You guys are totally missing the point. Just curious are you or have you ever been a hardcore fan of any team?
    Zoti repped this.
  21. Zoidberg

    Zoidberg Member+

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2006
    Most of the angst here is typical hardcore, minority, big soccer angst.

    I don't defend RB'S poor management, Real's name, etc....

    ....just that u guys matter much less than u, and the few guys u commiserate with think.

    NYC is Eurosnob/South American snob central. Even the young white male soccer fans there are snobs.
    It is a hard market and NY two is no guarantee either IMO. Location, location, location is the big thing there.

    Miami and NYC are the two worst markets I have been in with regards to US support/MLS respect.

    Just my 2 cents.
  22. Michael K.

    Michael K. Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 1999
    Location:
    There or Thereabouts
    Country:
    United States
    They set a modern-day precedent for sports branding in this league and this country, and along the way prised the door open further for the Team Dubais Getafes of the soccer world (which is perhaps even more hideous and alarming). At that price, the onus is on them to deliver something monumental - success on and off the field unlike anything we'd seen before. The standard hasn't been set nearly high enough.

    A couple times in the past, a whiff of a hint of a rumor of RB considering getting out has ignited huge threads filled with thinly veiled hope and anticipation that it might come to pass - even among people who've accepted RB enough to keep going out and supporting. The day RB finally f***s off is going to come someday - maybe soon, maybe not (I wouldn't set a lot of stock in what you rightly call "a throwaway line") and a significant proportion of the diehards can't wait. Which tells you all you need to know about why RB is never, ever going to spread wings and fly here.
    Zoti, Flex Buffchest and Haig repped this.
  23. Haig

    Haig Member+

    Joined:
    May 14, 2000
    Location:
    METROSTARS
    Club:
    --other--

    I just flat out disagree with the argument that as soccer fans, we have to "belly up to the bar."*

    When MLS recognized that there was a significant but latent soccer audience, and harmonized much the way games were played with the sport in general, interest grew at a faster rate.

    When MLS recognized that the unique atmosphere of soccer games differentiated the league from other US sports, interest grew at a faster rate.

    To me that says the less passive we are as soccer fans, the stronger the sport is. I can see upthread that this point was anticipated by the "don't flatter yourself, you are no better than any other fan," but I don't see RFK's quiet side featured in any MLS advertisements.




    * Jim Leahy, Vice President Sales and Marketing, NY/NJ MetroStars, prior to the 1999 season (last place finish, 15 pts., 4-3-5-20 record).
    Zoti, FlashMan, derek750 and 3 others repped this.
  24. looknohands

    looknohands Member+

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Country:
    United States
  25. OleGunnar20

    OleGunnar20 Member+

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2009
    Club:
    Manchester United FC

    from the article:

    what exactly do you think the term "franchises" means if it doesn't involve branding and/or feeder club?
    Barbieri repped this.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page