Thursday, April 06, 2006
Budgetary Considerations
There's been lots of hype, both within the league and from the outside, around the Red Bulls home opener. As well there should be.

The team, from what I've heard, could very well sell out the game. Now, a lot of this is directly attributable to Dietrich Mateschitz and Red Bull blowing it out for this one. Shakira and Wyclef, Pele and Franz won't be here for every game but of 80,000, if 25-30k come back on a regular basis then you've got the making of the new MLS attendance leader.

And when the team moves into a 25k seat stadium, then you've got the making of a hot ticket. It'd help if the team could win, though.

That said, something caught my eye the other day and has caused me concern. Apparently Red Bull and Ronaldo (yes, the Cup-winning Real Madrid striker) are interested in each other for after the World Cup this summer.

"I hope Dietrich and Red Bull can pull it off because it would be wonderful," Red Bulls coach Mo Johnston said.

Then the coach quipped with a laugh: "I don't think we can afford his hairdresser, and Ronaldo doesn't have any hair."
Now, I don't really think this is going to happen but this rumor, combined with the rumor that Donadoni (after being sacked in Italy despite being on the verge of UEFA) might come back to coach the team if Mo doesn't get the squad rolling, has me worried that fitting into MLS supposedly-rigid spending ways won't be possible for the Austrian Overlords.

If they can pay for Ronaldo's transfer fee, combined with fitting him into the salary structure (back loaded with a free apartment in Soho, etc.), who's to stop them? And how does Columbus (with Danny Szetela) and Salt Lake (Cunny's a stud, sure) match up with this? If they start trying to break the bank, does MLS turn into the NASL?

If they don't, does Red Bull really become the Super Club? And if MLS says nein to Mr. Mateschitz in bringing in Ronaldo, does he take his money and go home? Let's be honest, Pepsi offered him $67 billion for Red Bull ... he's not lacking for cash.


Blogger The Metrologist said...

Questions well worth asking.

As a Metro fan...I want to see players like Ronaldo. Well, sort of. He may be one of the biggest players in the world...the problem is that he is also one of the biggest players in the world. Cheap shot, but you get my point.

But looking long-term and at the league in's just as important to consider how it can all go wrong as how it is currently going right. Or at least, looks like it's going right.

12:02 AM  
Anonymous nico said...

I'm sure Ronaldo will be in New York just after that George Weah transfer comes through.

2:49 AM  
Blogger Mr. Fish said...

If 80k show up tomorrow, I'll eat my hat.

10:21 AM  
Blogger maradawga said...

Metrologist: I want to see players like Ronaldo as well but I'm still stuck in American soccer cynicism that says that we don't get to be good ... it's still too early to think that we might actually be turning the corner and without some more evidence, I'm not willing to drink the kool-aid yet.

Nico: Wasn't his son in talks to join MLS?

Fish: Ok, so I might have exaggerated just a bit. =)

12:34 PM  
Blogger The Metrologist said...


Oh, I'm with you. The first comment I wrote is probably the sunniest, most optimistic thing I've written about a possible Ronaldo transfer. Truth be told, there are at least a dozen players in the world I'd rather have on my team - lesser-known than Il Fenomeno, but much more likely to benefit the team on the field, which is all I really care about. Give me totally committed, healthy, fit and high-quality players over volatile, moody, fragile Galacticos any day. I don't like the idea of becoming the Real Madrid (or even the Chelski) of MLS, personally; those aren't the kinds of teams I want to support. Even worse, I don't want to see the Metros turn into the NY Rangers or Knicks of MLS - spending all that money and sucking even worse. That said, I've been trying to lighten up on my innate pessimism about all things Red Bull-flavored just a little, or at least taking a break from talking about it...I've fought that fight on message boards for over a month now, and am just a little weary and critic-ed out.

Nico - from what I've heard, this potential acquisition is far, far, far closer to being reality than Weah ever was. And there's more where that came from.

Spectacular? Yeah. Do I like it? I can think of a lot of reasons not to.

2:32 PM  

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