Soccer Business Bits: Marketing Hope, Cost of Klinsmann & More

Time for some quick hits on business stories circulating the world of American soccer scene.  We’ll start with USWNT goalie Hope Solo, who has reportedly inked a mult-year deal with Gatorade to join their stable of spokesman/atheletes.  According to the Sports Business Journal, the deal is estimated to fall in the low six-figure (per year) range.  Solo has already signed a deal with Bank of America along with teamates Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach.  Solo has already topped 260,000 followers on Twitter (Morgan is at 210,000) and her involvement with Gatorade will complement Gatordae’s relationship with USMNT goalie Tim Howard.

Late last week the news broke that US coach Bob Bradley was dropped in favor of former German coach and forward Jurgen Klinsmann.  What surprised many watchers of the United States team, was the willingness of Sunil Gulati to cut ties with Bradley despite three years remaining on a $500,000 per year contract.  While the United States Soccer Federation could recoup some of that money by keeping Bradley on in some advisory capacity, that scenario seems unlikely.   As such, it appears that USSF will endure a substantial loss by offloading Bradley.

Kyle McCarthy of offers this detailed look at the LIVESTRONG Sporting Goods Park.  McCarthy does a thorough job of looking at some of the finer points of the stadium layout.  One great nugget from the article; each player has use of a $4,000 chair in the locker room.

2 Responses

  1. Agreed US Soccer will incur costs associated w the transition, but hardly consider that “substantial costs.” Should the team improve, the move will easily be ROI positive.

  2. I’m not necessarily disagreeing with JT, but I would like to know how changing coaches (leading to team improvement) is supposed to be ROI positive. The status quo for the WC cycle is 1.5M for Bradley’s labor (plus any asst coaches serving at his discretion). The current situation keeps the same labor costs, and adds Klinsmann’s undisclosed compensation (plus whatever asst coaches serve at his discretion). And I’m speculating that the new hire gets paid significantly more, maybe 3M per year give or take. Off the cuff, the move could add about 10M over three years.

    I understand that increased team quality can lead to greater revenues, but it seems that the USMNT is one of the higher value domestic soccer properties already (e.g., getting higher ratings for a WC than the deciding game of the NBA Finals). I’m not sure how changing a coach would lead to significantly more TV dollars. I don’t recall USMNT games having trouble with attendance, and I don’t think more friendlies will be scheduled due to the new coach. I believe Klinsmann will attract more media attention – I’m just not sure how that would translate into greater revenues. And if there are greater revenues, I’m not sure it would offset the additional cost.

    Of course, get the USMNT into a World Cup semi or final, and I won’t give a damn how much Klinsmann got paid.

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