Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

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Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby AllThingsKC » Fri Feb 05, 2016 8:18 am

The MLS is looking to award to a team to St. Louis. St. Louis is looking to build a soccer stadium along the riverfront.

http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/metr ... aef89.html
beautyfromashes wrote:This thread is now worse than the Downtown Stadium/ Save our Stadiums thread. It makes me want to shoot myself in the head everytime I see it turn red. Congratulations ATKC, you now = kcdcchef.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby earthling » Fri Feb 05, 2016 9:11 am

With NFL gone and a strong domestic soccer culture, they could be next for expansion.

STL doesn't have very many Latinos, which is where MLS mostly targets. Columbus is probably MLS market with fewest % Latinos although they have large state of OH as TV market with more Latinos than STL market. I think KC had third most Latinos in Midwest last I checked as well as large number of African immigrants, which has strong soccer culture.

STL still makes sense if they are going to expand, especially now with NFL gone.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby KCtoBrooklyn » Fri Feb 05, 2016 11:29 am

As much as STL wants an MLS team, I don't think public financing for a stadium would be palatable to most residents after getting burned by Kroenke and still owing money on the dome. I'm sure the city will come up with some incentives to give, but I think the team ownership would have to finance most, if not all of the stadium. They supposedly had owners lined up with the proposition of a free stadium via the Rams, but now, instead of expansion and startup costs probably being $125-$150M, with the cost of a stadium, they will likely need at least $300M. We will have to see if they can come up with an ownership group willing to spend that much.

earthling wrote: STL doesn't have very many Latinos, which is where MLS mostly targets.


There really doesn't seem to be a connection between latino population and successful MLS fan bases. Chivas USA was a complete bust. Dallas has had some very good teams the past couple years, but awful attendance. Houston struggles to fill seats. LA Galaxy, even with the star players, huge metro, and plenty of success doesn't always fill their stadium. Now look at some of the largest, most-passionate fan bases: Seattle, Portland, KC... not exactly latino hotbeds. I don't see a significant amount of latino fans at SKC games. I think most latinos follow Liga MX and other leagues around the world more so than MLS.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby bobbyhawks » Fri Feb 05, 2016 12:08 pm

Here are the most recent MLS expansion cities... Toronto, San Jose, Seattle, Philadelphia, Vancouver, Portland, Montreal, New York, Orlando.

I think the MLS initially thought it would be wise to target cities with large hispanic populations, but I think they realized a long time ago that fans who grew up as fans of another league (hardcore culturally engrained families) do not convert to the MLS easily or at all (to date). 6 of the last 9 expansion cities aren't really known for their hispanic populations. Even the cities with hispanic populations do not have populations that typically get into soccer even close to the degree of Mexico and Central America (Cuba, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic are baseball-centric).

Honestly, the MLS's primary demographic appears to be (unscientifically), the 20 and 30 something, mostly white, "alternative" or "non-traditional-jock" crowd. They can attract decent numbers of families with young kids when attendance is down and prices are moderate, but they would much prefer to grow a new generation of fans in the demo that have traditionally watched European soccer casually but never really had a team to cheer for. It has become the path of least resistance and one that has been successful. Just another league that has a real problem of embracing and marketing to minorities, when it should be the sport most open to people of all backgrounds. Also, when your ticket prices are already on par with the top tier leagues in Europe, you have pretty much priced out lower income immigrant populations.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby shinatoo » Fri Feb 05, 2016 1:02 pm

How about the same plan they had for the Football stadium but only build the lower level, with the idea that football team could later move in and build the upper decks?
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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby brewcrew1000 » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:19 pm

Kind of Suprising that Nashville got the nomination for 1 of the 2 expansion cities, i had no clue they were even in the running or submitted a bid. St Louis will probably never get a team now. I think the 2nd team is expected to be announced today. I think Sacramento or Detroit are the likely teams to land a team.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby earthling » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:32 pm

Detroit is a top 15 media market, would think they'd get it if also a strong owner. And would've expected San Antonio over Nashville with Nashville not having much of a Latino population, which is a major MLS fan segment.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby KCtoBrooklyn » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:40 pm

Nashville really came up from the back of the pack when they had a strong stadium plan and ownership group emerge.

It is down to Sacramento or Cincinnati for the second spot. Detroit doesn't have a shot. The announcement on the 2nd team is expected to be delayed a bit, after the new year.

It looks like St Louis will be a long shot for landing one of the spots for teams 27 and 28. They need a new ownership group and/or stadium financing plan. San Diego is currently a favorite to land one of those spots. Whoever misses out on this round between Sac/Cinci may have a good shot. If Detroit comes back with a better stadium plan they would be a contender. Phoenix looks to be making a push and that is a big market. Competition for those last two spots will be fiercer than this round.

MLS has said they are stopping at 28 teams, but I think they will go to 32 in the near future. So I wouldn't say STL will never get a team, but one of the 29-32 spots may be their best chance and it could be a while before that happens.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby earthling » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:41 pm

^Yeah, seems like strong ownership/facilities may be more heavily weighted than potential fan base.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby KCtoBrooklyn » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:44 pm

earthling wrote:Detroit is a top 15 media market, would think they'd get it if also a strong owner. And would've expected San Antonio over Nashville with Nashville not having much of a Latino population, which is a major MLS fan segment.


Detroit's stadium plan didn't come together, so their proposal was to play at Ford Field, which is far from ideal.

I think Latino population is not really a major MLS fan segment. They seem more likely to follow Liga MX and European leagues. Look at some of the cities with the best MLS support and they are not exactly Latino hotbeds. Dallas and Houston have struggled with attendance and even LA Galaxy underperforms.

I don't think San Antonio had a good shot anyway, but with the Crew likely moving to Austin, any chance they had is gone.

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Re: Downtown St. Louis looking to build MLS stadium

Postby earthling » Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:56 pm

MLS seems to think Latinos are a major part of fan base...
https://www.theguardian.com/football/20 ... munity-dna

But maybe you are right that potential base is not as important as having a strong owner/facilities.


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