Soccer Business Bits: New BMO, Big TV Ratings & Stadium News

We’re not as against turf fields as many, but there is no doubt that MLS raises its stature and increases its chance of success as a business (by attracting those who are put off by such fields), when it converts to grass.  Such is the case in Toronto, where Field Turf is no longer and grass is on the way.  The new field will feature a state of the art system that will vaccum water out from under the field and keep the grass in great condition even during the cold weather.  The project will cost in excess of $5million.

Spanish language ratings from MLS Cup 2009 on Galavision are in and the news is quite good. Almost 500,000 watched the match on Galavision. When that number is combined with the ESPN rating for the same night, the numbers indicated that more than 1.5 million peopled watched the final.

The Wizards’ effort to build a stadium is continuing to move forward.  For those who don’t remember, the Wizards have turned their attention to Kansas as part of an effort to combine the stadium with the construction of a facility for the company Cerner. According to this article from the AP, the Cerner-Wizards deal may create 9,000 jobs in Kansas and politicians on both sides of the aisle are eager to make the deal happen.  Kansas and the local county have offered $230 million in incentives to lure Cerner and the Wizards to Kansas.  According to this article, Kansas has now offered to add more of the money up front.  Kansas is fighting with Missouri (the Bannister Mall project) to host the stadium.

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3 Responses

  1. If ever there was a showcase that displayed why we should go away from field turf it was the MLS Cup. Wet, cold field turf changed that game. I’ve played on it and coached teams that play on it. Nobody can say it acts like real grass. It doesn’t, and it never will.

  2. How great is it that MLS now has two municipalities fighting to build a stadium for one of its teams? I never thought I would see that happen, particularly in this economy.

  3. I agree Craig. that is pretty wild, and both deals are pretty good.

    As far as the turf, I agree that it is “different”, I just don’t mind it all that much, but for attracting fans, adding grass is a net positive. Starting next season, there will be limited turf left in MLS, and it isn’t leaving Seattle or New England any time soon.

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