Before we move onto standard soccer news, just a reminder that Soccer Night in Newtown is set for Monday night. Here is an SI interview with Chris Canetti regarding the event. To be honest, we have been surprised by the lack of media coverage surrounding the event outside the usual sports and soccer related media outlets. This is a great event with more than 1,000 people expected to attend over two sessions. There may be a fund raising component associated with the event; when we receive more information we will certainly forward it along.
In soccer business news, it was a big weekend for fans of soccer on American television. The Fox mothership offered the first network broadcast in the United States of an FA Cup match. The Manchester United /West Ham match was an exciting affair and a great introduction to the tournament. Unfortunately, not all of the network affiliates elected to air the telecast. Some decided to show infomercials or other non-soccer program and some affiliates showed the game on delay. Yet reports indicate that at least 90% of affiliates showed the match.
One other business story involves the league’s ongoing efforts to secure a permanent home in New York City. Over the weekend a number of stories broke suggesting that the New York Mets would readily welcome MLS to Citi Field. The articles also included quotes from league officials rejecting the possibility. Recall that Commissioner Garber long indicated that the Wilpons would be great MLS owners. However, that belief has seemingly waned given the significant financial issues surrounding the Mets. The reports made clear that the league is continuing to focus on its Queens project.