The Don x Sporting Kansas City

The Don was in KC for last night's playoff match and used his now-traditional pressbox scrum to testify to all that is good and holy about the rebirth of the Kansas City franchise. This is good...I like that it's not me for once.

As much as I love what's going on in the PNW and with apologies to my brothers and sisters in PDX who made one hell of a MLS debut this spring, Sporting Kansas City is the story of the year. Y'all may laugh now but let Vermes & Co. win MLS Cup this year and see how many writer-types and Twitteratti jump on the bandwagon; guarantee it's going to get crowded.


Robert Huffman said...

Yeah, it's a great story. They finished 5th in the league and should walk into the final by playing worse teams. Meanwhile, four better teams have to duke it out among themselves to get to the final.

Yeah, great job, Sporting.

ambrown said...

Sure are a fair amount of empty seats in that nice new stadium of theirs for them to be THE story of the year. I will give them plenty of credit for proving that soccer can be popular in "mainstream" america (ie, outside of my cascadian utopia, the pacific northwest) and for developing a savvy rebranding strategy and a winning record and all, but even with their success, I still don't get the vibe that Sporting has really left much of an impression on the midwest. Maybe I'm wrong, but what Portland/Seattle are doing in terms of entering the general consciousness of their respective towns is unmatched. IE, i can't help but wonder how many random people off the street in Kansas City would have developed opinions about CJ Sapong's strikes, and if that number in anyway compares to the HUGE number of random people I find around my fair city that have suddenly developed pretty detailed opinions on Brunner's defense or Zizzo's running.

so yeah, good on ya, Sporting, your attempts to be an unflinchingly, unapologetically global-style club (ie; supporter sections and new name and all) in the midwest are probably much more important in the long haul to success in the MLS, especially if the league is ever gonna make it in the south. But I can't help but doubt that the beautiful stadium is gonna still have a ton of empty seats in years to come, especially if the team starts to falter. I don't anticipate Jeld Wen EVER not selling out, frankly, even if the team tanks next year.

coachie ballgames said...


there are enough people outside mls hating on mls without those in mls hating on themselves.

SF said...

I hear you Coachie. Some folks are more concerned with narrow scope popularity contests ("my team has better attendance" etc.) than wide-angle views (making a corpse of a franchise relevant in a market that was long dismissive, showing that you can reinvent a moribund club in MLS, thinking outside the box and building a stadium that is so state-of-the-art that you can form a side-business around that capable of generating revenue from other pro sports franchises).

None of that is important.

ambrown said...

Correction: not hating. I'm rooting for SKC to continue to grow and stay relevant. I'm just not 100% convinced they are there yet.

price per head said...

the saddest thing about it. It is that he is right. It is a brand and they have to sell it to their fans.