The Monday After

Week One is complete, so as we will do every Monday, here are some business thoughts on the weekend that was.  For fans of MLS, it was a great weekend of games, with matches kicking off from 6:30-10:30 ET on Saturday night.  The free preview of Direct Kick, combined with MatchDay Live and FSC brought a constant stream of games.  We thought that Direct Kick functioned great.  Other than a weather related hiccup in Houston, the broadcasts were smooth and the free preview was a fantastic advertisement for the season long service.  From a business perspective, it is always interesting to see the in-game advertisements that are part of the local broadcasts.

By all accounts, the MatchDay Live service functioned well despite some initial issues.  We found the “MatchCenter” to be woefully slow in providing scores and highlights.  Despite the website’s front page revealing the 3-1 DC/Columbus final, the Matchcenter showed the score as 1-0 well into the evening.  The i-phone app was great, providing up to the minute highlights and game summaries. The features are better than last year and were a significant addition to the MLS fan experience.  We’d welcome some thoughts on all of this items and on the Android App.

Attendance wise, it was a very good day in MLS.  The week started with a very big crowd in Seattle and continud with just over 20k in Dallas (a great number), almost 21k in New York (although the pictures tell a different story), more than 19k in Houston, 23k in Vancouver, more than 17k in Colorado (almost a sell-out), a reported 18k at the Home Depot Center for Chivas USA (looked much less on TV), 27k sellout on Sunday and 10,500 in San Jose.  This is a dynamite opening weekend for the league.  Typical laggards Dallas and Colorado looked great (can it keep up), and Vancouver started with a bang.

Finally, it was disappointing to see the number of teams withoug jersey sponsors.  We will write more about this in coming days, but after Don Garber’s pronouncement in November that most teams would have sponsors in fairly short order, the blank spaces on the jerseys of teams like Chicago, Dallas, Colorado, New England, Kansas City and more were disheartening.

5 Responses

  1. Loved the new MatchDay Live streaming. The new PIP and Mosaic features were really nice features that I don’t remember from last year. With more teams in the league and likely more simultaneous games, I found it quite useful. I was able to watch one game and monitor up to two more and switch them out to the bigger screen with a click of the button. Good job MLS.

  2. Do we have rating information on these games? Especially the first kick in Seattle? I’m interested to see how a league matchup does on ESPN, and if there’s much of a drop-off from their regular programing.

  3. First kick in Seattle was a .39 with about 600k people watching the match

  4. I was at the red bulls game and I think that the frigid temps combined with the NCAA tournament kept people away. That said, I am sick of making excuses for NY fans. What. the. hell. You buy tickets and then never go to the games? It makes no sense.

  5. I was at the Red Bull game as well and there was def a lot of no shows. I must admit though i was freezing my ass off but i still made it, i guess thats why i sit in the supporters section where dedication is needed. LA game was a sell out but a lot of no shows as well with that downpour but the LA supporters def dont have any excuses it was like 55deg out there.

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