Today, we share an open letter from a founding member of the Borough Boys to Cosmos Chairman Seamus O’Brien in an effort to understand the club’s strategy and how they will get there.
An Open Letter to Chairman Seamus O’Brien
September 26, 2016
I write to you today as a founding member of the Borough Boys. Though I write only on my own behalf, I believe my sentiments are shared by many of our members.
The Borough Boys, you may recall, started in 2007 with the express objective of obtaining an MLS team located within the five boroughs. Imagine our excitement, after years of working and hoping, when it started to emerge that MLS would indeed be putting a team in the City proper. Then, imagine our profound disappointment – and anger – that the team would be merely a promotional device for an English team’s global marketing ambition. This, we believed, was a sell-out of our great City’s values, self-confidence, and our country’s great soccer traditions. Nothing since that team has taken the field has altered our original view of the franchise.
The Cosmos, we believed, would field a team that honored the great traditions of our region and we were, and are, proud to support he excellent team that you field and the ambition you have shown.
However, recent events and league pronouncements leave me concerned. Sitting here today, the NASL seems to be in disarray. Personally, though it’s no fun, I can live with it for a while. But statements from the league commissioner that the NASL intends to “collaborate” with MLS and the USL is sending a signal that our league is willing to settle into a lower division place in the soccer pyramid. That may very well make sense for the league and some of its clubs, but in my view not our club.
From day 1, the Cosmos has always claimed that the goal was to be at the pinnacle of the U.S. Soccer pyramid. You counseled patience, but assured us that that was the goal. Today, I am simply not seeing the path to reach that goal. Our team plays in front of fewer than 4,000 people each game. Our stadium situation is a debacle, and we are playing in a league that seems to be settling into Division 2 status (at best). Your most loyal fans have always been willing to go along with this state of affairs knowing you had bigger ambitions. Now we are worried.
We understand that there may be legal and business reasons that you cannot share every detail of your roadmap to attain your stated goals for the club. But I think out of respect for your most loyal fans we need from you:
- a public reaffirmation of your high ambition for the club and
- a more detailed idea of how you intend to get there.
And I believe we need to hear it directly from our owners, not employees of the club.
I want to reiterate the appreciation that I and many of our fans feel for bringing back our great club and doing such a great job on the field. But we do need a better view of what you think the future holds, and how we get there.
All the best.