Field of Schemes
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September 21, 2009

More vaportecture in San Jose?

The San Jose Earthquakes released some sketches of a proposed soccer-only stadium on Saturday, but there's no indication when it might be built: Team owner Lew Wolff still doesn't know how it would be paid for, and would say only that it would open about two years after construction began, whenever that might be.

"People expect you to break ground," Wolff told the San Jose Mercury News. "I've been breaking ground all my life. But I don't like to generate expectations beyond what I can deliver."

Interestingly, Wolff didn't entirely rule out having the Quakes share space with the Oakland A's should they move to San Jose, though he said, "The first goal is to have it soccer only." Meanwhile, team execs announced they'd be cutting ticket prices for next season — some by as much as 40% — which is probably as much about the team having just finished in last place two years in a row as it is about the deflating ticket bubble.


Actually Neil we do know how it'll be paid for, a combo of private financing and sponsorship dollars. They have the former, they're trying to get the rest of the latter. That's why they released the renderings on Saturday so they have something to sell potential sponsors rather than some nebulous idea of a "stadium."

Posted by Dan on September 21, 2009 02:13 PM

Also you might want to consider the source for your information. The Mercury News article you reference was written before the unveiling occurred. In fact the author was not at the unveiling event, did not get a sneak peek at any of the info unveiled Saturday and according to the FO he did not interview Wolff at the event either. Typical Mercury News "journalism" at its finest, make up what you want.

Posted by Dan on September 21, 2009 02:22 PM

As the story linked to in the item makes clear, Wolff has about 20% of the $5 million in year in sponsorships he needs to pay for a stadium. That's "doesn't know how it would be paid for" in my book, unless "somebody will give me some more money at some point" counts as a funding plan.

Posted by Neil on September 21, 2009 06:49 PM

the msl franchises are hanging on by their fingertips and will probably suffer the same fate of the nasl, lack of financial interest equal to the cost of running a franchise. soccer fans tend to succumb to what allen greenspan called "irrational exuberance" when it comes to "their team".
lew wolff keeps spitballing these proposals without any basis in reality...

Posted by paul w. on September 23, 2009 01:35 PM

What's a "msl franchise" paul? Seems like if you don't even know what the league is called, maybe you're not the authority on it's business prospects either, eh?

Posted by Matt in SF on September 24, 2009 06:26 PM

Indeed. Also interesting that he ignores that several of the teams are turning a profit right now, with several more profitable teams incoming in the next few years. Seems he's "wishful thinking" if he thinks MLS is on the path of the NASL. What NASL was profitable, what NASL team had their own stadiums, what NASL team had the TV deals MLS and MLS teams have?

Posted by Dan on September 25, 2009 12:21 PM

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