Can Atlanta support an MLS franchise? This is the question that Arthur Blank has requested Dick Sullivan, an old Lowe’s executive who formerly have been the Falcons’ Executive V . P . of promoting.
Mr. Sullivan is on leave from that publish to assist Mr. Blank with his other special projects. One particular project is really a research effort to uncover what it will require to create the MLS to Atlanta.
Atlanta, at first glance, would appear to become a logical marketplace for expansion. The city hosts professional teams in American football, baseball, basketball, and hockey. Atlanta hosts hundreds of 1000′s of soccer gamers of any age scattered over the Metro area playing in lots of youth and amateur fingersave goalkeeper gloves leagues – creating a sizable and lucrative soccer literate population. Much less mention, a minimum of anecdotally, soccer parents have money. Same goes with Atlanta have the ability to take advantage of the greatest growth sport in america?
Let us first take a look in the Silverbacks, Atlanta’s professional USL team. The Backs are relatively well based on the neighborhood Atlanta soccer scene. There is a gradually changing soccer specific stadium at REMAX Greater Atlanta Stadium. By time the 4th phase of construction is done, the stadium could have 15,000 seats. About 10,000 shy of MLS’s target, but nonetheless not necessarily a bad venue whatsoever. But unless of course MLS and USL adopt a campaign / relegation system, despite exactly what the US Open Cup shows us, the USL will invariably play second fiddle.
The actual challenge in my opinion: the Atlanta fan of sports.
Atlanta sports fans really are a infamously unpredictable bunch.
Whether it is the Falcons, the Braves, or even the Hawks unless of course they are winning, Atlanta’s sports fans just don’t appear to appear. Your time and effort is simply too great – the trouble exceeds the advantage.
In defense of Atlanta sports fans, area of the challenge is always that the “city” is really a metro area spread over 28 areas. Arthur Blank recognizes that making the effort to obtain the right stadium location an area which will provide enough convenience to create the trip useful, is vital to success.
Convey a club in Gwinnett, and also you most likely lose Cobb. Put it in Cobb and you almost certainly lose Gwinnett. Place it either in and also you most likely lose all the Southside. And also the tradeoffs continue just about every scenario.
So what is the right mix? Can Atlanta support an MLS franchise? I believe the reply is not as simple as it appears.
I’ve got a crazy idea. I understand it’s crazy which I most likely lose credibility according to my delusion but…
Atlanta needs two teams. Yes, I stated two teams. I said it had been crazy, but hear me out.