Welcome to the Party Kansas City?

The big business story in American soccer today was the long awaited re-branding of the team formerly known as the Kansas City Wizards.  With more than 1000 fans in attendance, the Wizards unveiled their new identity, uniforms crest and colors.  The Wizards will now be known as Sporting Kansas City.  As part of the announcement the team’s 2011 designated player, Omar Bravo was in attendance. The press conference was carried on local sports radio.

Here is a link to the team’s new website and here is a link to a discussion of the new branding.  The link includes a discussion of the team’s new shield and the various elements of the design.  The team also includes a new blog.

Immediate response to the rebrand is mixed with some fans applauding the change while others have been extremely critical.  The change coincides with the team’s move into their new stadium.  The team denies that the rebrand represents a “Europeanization” of the team and claim that the new identiy reflects the team’s relationship with the local community.  Under the Sporting Kansas City name, the club will field teams in other sports.  The team believes the logo and name will permeate the Kansas City area and become synomoymous with sports in the region.

The team will apparently open its stadium on June 9 on ESPN.