Where Seattle Meets Barcelona

Everyone is flagging the Seattle MLS announcement, so, seeing as you’ve all seen/heard this before, I thought I’d play up the aspect that most appeals to me: the fan ownership thing, in which fans buy shares of the club. Drew Carey handled the announcement and, assuming he’s playing it straight (and we wouldn’t he?), fans who own a chunk of the club get to vote fer or agin’ the team president. That’s kinda neat, as I see it. More significantly, that kind of talk flies like one of those birds that migrates super-fucking-far on annual basis – e.g. very, very well indeed – in the Pacific Northwest. We pitch “progressive tents” at every opportunity in this neck of the woods.

Anyway, you can find a video clip of the announcement on GOALSeattle.com.

One last thing: somewhere during Drew Carey’s entrance, someone in the background blurts out “Say Portland sucks,” which kind of makes me titter given my comment on what I view as an entirely shared progressive culture in both cities. Having lived in both cities for 5+ years, I don’t see a whole lot separating them generally, which may explain the bitterness of the rivalry (certainly much more so than the half-silly, yet frequent references to a “rivalry that goes back to NASL days.” Yeah, it did…but with a 20-freakin’-year hiatus; just admit the hate is natural and stop trying to dress it up). At any rate, the Timbers Blog responds in kind…at least with the graphic that tops his post.

I can’t pretend I’m part of that scrum, of course. Hell, I may be living in Seattle in a couple months for reasons that none of you (should) care about (no, it’s not because an MLS team set down roots there; 1) I’m still holding out hope for a Portland team; 2) do you seriously think a married father of two can make his wife move for that?). In any case, I pack my weird brand of soccer whorishness wherever I go.

Whoops. One last, last thing: is it true, as reported by MLS Rumors, that Seattle’s MLS team won’t be the Sounders? Was this mentioned at the announcement? If so, how do Seattle fans feel about this one?

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8 Responses

  1. I dig the idea of supporters owning part of the team. Yokohama FC is probably the best modern example (and maybe FC United when they make it to the Football League) of something like that being started in recent memory.

    However, the big ones like Barca have built up over years through thousands of people belonging to the club. Pre-Glazer MUFC selling shares of stock will probably be a lot closer to anything started by a MLS franchise.

    We’ll see how this develops, but those owners didn’t really seem to know what they were talking about. I found that very entertaining.

  2. One thing I don’t think I stated clearly in the above: I like the idea of fan ownership – quite a bit actually. As much as I make fun of the Pac NW’s self-love over it’s progressive vibe, I do so from the inside; I buy into that stuff as much as anyone. So, yeah, I hope it works, both well and as planned.

  3. Man, I can’t believe you’re linking to MLS freakin’ Rumors.

    In the press conference they said they would be going for a “traditional soccer name” or something like that.

  4. It’s a weakness, the MLS Rumors thing that is. I fully admit it. My only defense is that the caveat is in the site’s title.

  5. If Portland is into this, why don’t Portland fans get together raise 70 million dollars and get a team and refurbish PGE park. Look at the Green Bay Packers model of community ownership.

  6. Interesting idea, Timoteo. I wonder if the league would buy into a thoroughly collective bid, or if they’d worry about talking to too many chefs.

  7. Rivalries & Expansion. I think it is great that 20 years dead–Portland and Seattle lives on. Which is precisely why I think Portland should get either the 17th or 18th expansion team. And st. louis (doesn’t deserve to be capitalized) should be the next expansion team. MLS needs more rivalries.

    KC loves to hate st. louis…I would love to road trip to Collinsville to cheer on KC.

    PS-move Chivas to Las Vegas. Doing so would expand the footprint, MLS would be the first pro league in the city of sin, rivalry/proximity to LA would still be there….plus, CHIVAS LAS VEGAS sounds cool.

    Viva Chivas Las Vegas.

  8. Nate: I wholly endorse everything you have written – especially the Vegas thing. Very good.

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