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      WARNING!   07/26/16

      By reading or participating in the Coffee House forum, you are acknowledging that some topics may be highly controversial in nature. While we make every attempt to ensure that no one and no groups are offended as a result of discussions contained within, we unfortunately can make no guarantees. Participate in threads contained within this forum at your own risk.
tozmervo

MLS in Charlotte?

372 posts in this topic


Re the the game today. I give these organizers a lot of credit. There are guys selling mexican flags on the corner of Tryon at 9 am. These guys mean business!

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I don't understand why a soccer team needs a mascot in the name. Most teams don't have them. Here are some examples:

In Europe...

Manchester United

Chelsea

FC Barcelona

Real Madrid CF

FC Bayern Munich

In North America...

DC United

FC Dallas

Real Salt Lake

Toronto FC

In football, since it originated in colleges and universities, I understand and like the tradition of having mascots and how that has translated to pro sports, but they seem less important in soccer. Who cares if a guy in a fuzzy suit is running around?

So to that end, why not FC Charlotte, Royal Charlotte FC (with "royal" beign a play on the queen city thing and "Real Salt Lake"), or something along those lines.

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Despite a final score of 0-0 (yeah, they're going to have to fix that before soccer makes it in the US), that was some of the most fun I've ever had at a professional sports game of any kind. From the guy that ran the field and got tackled hard enough to make Panthers wince to the half time Mexican hat dance to the bizarre stack of $1 bills floating around the west end of the stadium - yeah, that was quite an experience :D

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Despite a final score of 0-0 (yeah, they're going to have to fix that before soccer makes it in the US), that was some of the most fun I've ever had at a professional sports game of any kind. From the guy that ran the field and got tackled hard enough to make Panthers wince to the half time Mexican hat dance to the bizarre stack of $1 bills floating around the west end of the stadium - yeah, that was quite an experience :D

$1 bills floating around the stadium? LOL! That sounds awesome! Glad you had fun! Hopefully soccer will eventually become a bigger sport here in the US.

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I certainly wouldn't mind seeing the Southeast part of the country better represented in MLS. But I've just always gotten the impression that soccer is just more popular in some parts of the country than others. At the college level, the ACC does support men's soccer but the SEC doesn't. I'm not saying it can't be done, but I'm not sure how receptive the MLS would be to offers from the Southeast when there's other cities vying for expansion as well. I do think Charlotte would be one of the better locations if the MLS wanted to locate to the Southeast. But I'm also wondering about if the MLS is going to keep expanding at this rate. They'll have to change the rules to allow more foreign players to play or else you really run the risk of not having enough 'quality' players to fill rosters. I think the NASL ended up with this problem. The MLS is in an odd situation. It obviously needs to work it's way up to being successful and profitable. But it's also got to build up a system to develop American soccer youth and popularity of soccer in general in the US.

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$1 bills floating around the stadium? LOL! That sounds awesome! Glad you had fun! Hopefully soccer will eventually become a bigger sport here in the US.

Ha! I totally forgot about that. I was making my way around the upper deck and I was a little behind the guy. He was really "making it rain!"

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Charlotte is going to host two stage A games of the Gold Cup - the championship of FIFA's CONCACAF region - North America, Central America and the Caribbean.

Both are on Thursday: Game 1 - Costa Rica vs. El Salvador & Game 2 - Mexico vs. Cuba.

One of the main highlights apparently is Javier Hernandez, who is Mexico's star play who currently plays for Manchester United will be here to help Team Mexico.

All of this is great news for Charlotte. After last year's friendly between Mexico and Iceland which apparently almost sold out BoA stadium, Charlotte is proving its ability to be a market for MLS,

Edited by Urbanity

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The NYTimes has a piece about the success of the Portland Timbers that makes me really want an MLS team in Charlotte and playing at Memorial Stadium. It sounds like a great example of how a pro team doesn't have to be in the biggest/best/newest to find a fan base and success

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There are a lot of traditionalist in the southeast who cant see the writing on the wall. Having the big 3 sports represented in Charlotte is a dream for many people but looking at the recent struggles with attendence it should be obvious that baseball has priced out the everyday fan. I am curious to know what the profit marging would be for a MLS team to be successful in the Charlotte market. To me MLS would be the franchise I would be salivating for since it seems the sports popularity is growing and Im sure it would have more of chance of sticking around. Again I'm no expert but baseball just doesnt have the pull it used to. In a couple more years the NFL will suffer the same fate as flat-screens get cheaper and tix prices keep rising. As it stands right now if you want to see a MLS game you better be in a the home market or have a complete sports package. To me that alone would ensure the success of a franchise until the sport matures. If people cant see the game at home they gotta go to the game right....

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I can't agree with you more, NcSc74. Baseball is on the wane in my opinion and I don't see the sport making a big comeback. Soccer, however, is definitely a growing sport. If it's attendance and crowds we want to see at sporting events, soccer is in and baseball is out.

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If it's attendance and crowds we want to see at sporting events, soccer is in and baseball is out.

Disagreed. Last year MLS attendance averaged under 17000 per game...Roughly in line with the NHL or NBA. Average attendance for MLB overall is somewhere in the 25000-30000 per game range. Plus baseball plays many more games per year meaning that average yearly crowds for MLB are much higher. MLS is not even considered one of the big sports by some. Plus Baseball is "America's Favorite Passtime." I would much, much rather have MLB any day of the week than MLS, and I think most Charlotteans would agree. Would I like to see MLS in Charlotte...yeah, eventually. I think it would be cool to have a historic site like Memorial Stadium renovated and become a major venue. But I would certainly not want MLS instead of MLB or at the expense of having MLB.

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I can't agree with you more, NcSc74. Baseball is on the wane in my opinion and I don't see the sport making a big comeback. Soccer, however, is definitely a growing sport. If it's attendance and crowds we want to see at sporting events, soccer is in and baseball is out.

Baseball attendance is at an all time high. It's just moved out of the "#1 American sport" category, and I don't see football moving out of the way any time soon... That said, soccer has tons of room to grow.

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As for the point of MLB being in decline, I agree with cltbwimob that the facts simply show the opposite - though I would not be surprised if there is eventually a restructuring of the league as far as number of games played.

That said - I do agree that MLS has some untapped potential though I can not yet tell how significant. I do agree that an investor would probably do well with an MLS team in Charlotte.

I personally would rather see a minor league baseball park in downtown than an MLB. I also absolutely love the idea of Memorial Stadium being retrofitted for both MLS and MLL.

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Alright, let me fine-tune my previous post just a tad. I don't have a good feel for the baseball community because I came from a family where no one watched baseball. Personally, I find the sport incredibly boring and can never understand why anyone watches it except for nostalgic reasons. Maybe I suspect most baseball fans are of an older generation and therefore attendance/viewership will decline as that generation dies off. Other than reading the posts on this forum, I never hear too many people talking about baseball or discussing how Charlotte should have a team. Maybe we don't know how much we want baseball until we actually have a major league team, idk, but that seems like an awfully big gamble to me. What pisses me off about the whole Knights stadium/MLB stadium fiasco is that it holds up construction of a park which is much more appealing to me than baseball. Just my two cents. Sorry if I have offended any baseball fans out there, I've been told it's America's pastime :)

Edited by abttown

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You didn't offend me, but feel free to join me one day for Yankees game at the Corner Pub (Red Sox fan base) and watch me do my triple cross hail mary's and evil eyes at the screen to see what it's all about for some of us...

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I personally would rather see a minor league baseball park in downtown than an MLB. I also absolutely love the idea of Memorial Stadium being retrofitted for both MLS and MLL.

I don't know If it is really possible to retrofit Memorial Stadium, I don't think the site really has the room. To really make the expansion/retrofit effective then they'd need to add luxury boxes, increase the restroom capacity, and add larger concession spaces. As it sits right now the Kraft and Giles Science buildings at CPCC limit the expansion possibilities. Also the field is on the small side for

modern large sports teams, it gets crowded down there during highschool games and they don't have near the personel or cameras running around that a proteam would have. The site is definately a great one for it's uses though. Large Concerts fit well there (well away from residential areas) and it has great access to the major artery lines , and with the streecar darn good access to public transportation. So to really be able to utilize it as an effective tool to get MLS it'd have to be completely rebuilt, I think.

Edited by DEnd

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^Doesn't Memorial Stadium already need to be re-built due to some structural problems? I think it has something to do with the former stream placed into tunnels beneath the stadium stands and field. The stadium and the rest of Indepedence Park sit in a small valley that had a branch stream (now underground) feeding Little Sugar Creek.

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^Doesn't Memorial Stadium already need to be re-built due to some structural problems? I think it has something to do with the former stream placed into tunnels beneath the stadium stands and field. The stadium and the rest of Indepedence Park sit in a small valley that had a branch stream (now underground) feeding Little Sugar Creek.

The East end seating fell in a few years ago and was torn out. I'm not aware of any other structural problems, but I haven't read the engineering report that was done after that incident.

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^ that's one of the problems of building a stadium over a creek.

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^^True, but interestingly, even Kings Drive is built over a creek beside the old Central High (CPCC).

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With the Major League Lacrosse team, Charlotte Hounds, beginning play next summer at Memorial Stadium there has been talk of refurbishing the old stadium. In fact, there was a recent community meeting to discuss improvements to Memorial Stadium. One option involves a comprehensive renovation including a full-sized soccer pitch.

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/201...-memorial.html

http://groundhoppingcarolina.blogspo...um-legacy.html

Building on this there was an article in today's Charlotte Observer which talks about the possibility of Major League Soccer in Charlotte:

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/201...ike-twice.html

Although it is only talk at this point, it is nice to think of the Queen City as being a potential MLS market one day. Charlotte United?

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With the Major League Lacrosse team, Charlotte Hounds, beginning play next summer at Memorial Stadium there has been talk of refurbishing the old stadium. In fact, there was a recent community meeting to discuss improvements to Memorial Stadium. One option involves a comprehensive renovation including a full-sized soccer pitch.

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/201...-memorial.html

http://groundhoppingcarolina.blogspo...um-legacy.html

Building on this there was an article in today's Charlotte Observer which talks about the possibility of Major League Soccer in Charlotte:

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/201...ike-twice.html

Although it is only talk at this point, it is nice to think of the Queen City as being a potential MLS market one day. Charlotte United?

The MLS is getting ready for another large-scale expansion. From what I understand, they are looking to move to as many as 24 teams. With none in the SE, this really is our best opportunity to land a franchise. I'd really like to see a team here, I enjoy the sport but typically support EPL and Bundesliga. Having an MLS team would be great though and I would attend plenty of games. Maybe we could play off the "Queen city" moniker and be "Real Charlotte".

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New Here, but have been "lurking" for sometime, felt it was about time to get an account.

One thing I would wonder is if the Hounds were to share the Memorial Stadium with an MLS team, would there be any conflicts since they share the same season (spring-late summer). Looking forward to see how MLL does in Charlotte, not the biggest soccer fan but two teams in Memorial Stadium would really give that historic stadium new life.

Alex

Edited by ajfunder

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While I am not really a soccer fan in the least, the idea of Charlotte getting another major league sports franchise is appealing. In addition to MLS and MLL, Charlotte could host the FCS, Div II and Div III championship games; as well as occasionally hosting the MLL/NCAA Lacrosse/Soccer, championship, Shrine Bowl, rugby tournament or a concert in a renovated Memorial Stadium. If done properly, the stadium may even make a good venue for track and field portions of the Pan Am games if the city would ever go after such an event.

As far as renovations, here is what I'd like to see:

-Lower level (the historical portion) of the stadium preserved to the extent possible and expanded to complete the bowl.

-Upper level to be rebuilt (if structurally deficient) and expanded to make a full horseshoe leaving the west end open for skyline views.

-Bleachers removed and replaced with stadium seating.

-New press boxes and suites added.

-Brick or stone enclosures for the concourses to make the outside of the stadium visually appealing.

-A large jumbo tron and scoreboard on the east end.

-Grady Cole center torn down and rebuilt to fit into the overall site design.

-A veterans memorial plaza in between the Stadium and the rebuilt Grady Cole center complete with reflecting pool, flags,etc... and names of all North and South Carolina veterans that have died in all wars since the Revolutionary War. This would be in keeping with the American Legion/VFW tradition of the stadium.

-A connection to the Sugar Creek greenway.

Edited by cltbwimob

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