Soccer Business Bits: Soccer Stimulus in Colorado, President Obama’s World Cup Appeal and More

rapidsThe Colorado Rapids Offical Blog announced a marketing effort between the Team and the City of Denver to increase tourism in the Rocky Mountain Region.  Through a joint announcement between the Rapids and Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, the City will be promoting discount packages for a variety of events including Rapids Games, cultural attractions and restaurants.  The deal includes 2 free tickets to a Rapids game in return for booking a hotel room for a summer night in Denver.  The Rapids are the only Denver area sports franchise participating in the campaign.  Importantly, the “free tickets” are only vouchers that must be redeemed at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.  There will not be stacks of Rapids’ tickets sitting in hotel lobbies.  More information is available at www.denver.org.

FIFA announced some time ago that World Cup host countries for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups will be announced in December 2010.  It is no secret that the United States has long been interested in capturing one of those bids.  According to the New York Times, President Barack Obama is lending his support to the bid with a direct appeal to Sepp Blatter.

In the letter, President Obama relates his personal history with the sport as both a player and a fan.  Given the President’s worldwide popularity, his assist with the bid could be an enormous lift.  The benefits of a U.S. World Cup have been apparent ever since the success of the 1994 Cup.  No country can bring bigger crowds to the tournament than the United States. FIFA works in weird ways and Sepp Blatter runs something of a fiefdom.   However, given the President’s unique popularity, even Sepp might feel compelled to give the U.S. a long look.

Finally, Commissioner Don Garber has taken great pains to deny a rumor that the Red Bulls are close to being sold.  Denials come in many forms, but this denial certainly falls in the “strong” category.  The denial comes at the same time that the Red Bulls announced their “topping off” ceremony for Red Bull Arena.  As we have previously discussed, Red Bull Arena is set to open in 2010.

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