31 March 2011

Donnie Riddles at it again


Today MLSINSIDER blog posted an interview that Don Garber did with Forbes.

During this interview, the topic of NYC expansion came up and Garber says we are no where near close to finalizing a deal. That is a fine statement to make, but when you look back at recent history, he is contradicting himself a little bit.

“Our focus on the 20th expansion team is going in full swing," Garber said. "We’re having discussions with a number of different ownerships groups in New York and hope to continue to make progress in those discussions. We’d like that team to be in the NY metro area. … We hope in the next 12 months to finalize that.”

"We want to see a 20th team and we want to see that in New York"

"The Cosmos have relaunced that brand and have done a great job"
"Maybe its them, maybe its someone else, we hope to get something done in the next 6-8 months quite frankly"

" There are others much less public than the Cosmos who continue to express interest. Sometime by the end of the year we'll have a better sense as to where we're going with the 20th team. But I'm committed to trying to finalize a deal so it can be here in New York."

If you have been following the 20th expansion spot closely, your head might be spinning. Being the timeline seems to get larger, one might conclude that talks must be going backwards, but the Cosmos have stated that talks with the league and city are progressing. What the F#%K is really going on?

Don Garber is a fantastic commissioner and should get nothing but praise for the work he has done with Major League Soccer. However, when it comes to expansion and releasing news he just confuses the hell out of you.

Which is why we call him "Donnie Riddles"

24 March 2011

Q and A Review

(Photo courtesy of Christopher Dobens)

UPDATE - YOU CAN WATCH THE Q and A HERE: http://www.youtube.com/user/NYCCosmosBBAO?feature=mhum

In what was a great night, The New York Cosmos answered questions from supporters on a cold and wet spring evening.

A special thanks goes out to The New York Cosmos, Legends bar and all the fans that came out and asked fantastic questions. There were so many questions on site that we could not even open the mailbag.

While many of our members were working the event and could not really get much in terms of a proper report, we wanted to throw some bullet points on what was covered. We will add links to reports as they come out as well. We will add photos later this evening.

  • Working with city on various locations (Bronx, Queens, Randalls Island)
  • Soil samples and testing have been going on for a while. 
  • A lot of the plans were started 8 years ago and they are re opening those plans
  • They have hired architects and have some stadium designs.
  • Designs include a "kop" like end for supporters
  • They have met with Wilpons and shared the vision, although its up to the Wilpons to join aboard if they wish.
  • Met with DOT and MTA about stadium (This is actually an interesting point, hopefully will have more on this later)
  • Dream of coming 20th MLS team but the Cosmos are not going anywhere if they dont get 20. They will keep the academy and keep knocking on the MLS door.
  • Goal is to start in their own stadium in 2013.
  • Cosmos looking at a 40K seat stadium.
  • Cosmos discuss less luxury boxes and more seats for supporters
  • Will meet with Borough Boys once a month to discuss the fans concerns.
  • Strong focus on academy.
  • The job of academy is to prepare for professional career
  • Academy will encourage players to continue education
  • Academy is free
  • 4-3-3 is the system of choice
  • Cosmos working on PDL team for this year (More details to come)
  • Presented Borough Boys with a gift "Pele" banner.

21 March 2011

Soccer Photo Exchibit in DUMBO


Not Cosmos related but supporter culture related. This looks like it could be a great exhibit.

19 March 2011

Garber: "Subway ride to stadium WILL BE replicated in NY"


Was this a slip by Don Garber? When speaking to The Canadian National Post about expansion and soccer specific stadium, it brought about a very interesting quote.

"Another key issue facing the league is the need to get soccer-specific stadiums built in each market. How are things progressing in that regard?

When the league was founded, we had great owners and yet we were playing in large NFL stadiums. And that plan wasn’t working and we needed to switch and start building soccer stadiums, and that helped us create the momentum we’ve been able to ride to today. It’s also about building a stadium in the right location. Toronto’s BMO Field was the first stadium we had that, in essence, proved downtown stadiums really work and can provide fans an opportunity to go from work, or go from a local pub, and walk or take a short subway ride right to the stadium. And that’s been replicated in Seattle and will be replicated again in Portland and New York. There are so many great facilities that are in the communities where our fans live and work. That’s become a newer-stadium model for the league."

You can say that perhaps he was speaking of RedBull arena but his choice of words: "WILL BE" says to me that he might be speaking of New York City and the potential 20th team.

If this is true, then Don Garber and his "preliminary talks in NYC" are much farther along than he is stating. If he can comfortably make this quote,then discussions are going pretty well.

Let the speculation begin about that "pretty darn good piece of land" the Wilpons sit on, which as we know is just a one train subway ride from Grand Central Station.

16 March 2011

Q and A next week


15 March 2011

The Singaporean job


One of the most incredible things about soccer is how far across the globe the sport actually spans. From the deep jungles of Santa Cruz, Bolivia to the high slopes of the Tibetan Plateau, soccer is England's most important and famous export; more so than world destroyers BP or the "British Gentlemen" qualities we've come to stereotype them into. For the Cosmos as to borrow the line from former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue "would you rather have 300,000 million fans or 1 billion" and to answer that in a Captain Obvious manner, you bet your bottom dollar. Over on the NYC website the organization talks about how they are visiting Asia for the first time since they went back in the 70's and how the global brand of Green and Yellow is trying to forge new economic partnerships and develop into new corners of the world and that by bringing Pele, Cantona, and some LA athlete named Cobi they can do just that. But underneath this diplomacy by fame cover-up the Cosmos are doing a shroud deal that could lead them one step closer to MLS and one better player towards greatness.

One of the first things to jump out at you is on the website the mention of a company known as Courts. For a lot of people Courts is basically a brand only found in Singapore, (And seeing that Singapore is one of only two city-states in the world, a City Brand) who in a lot of ways are like our Sears' stores. The quote from the Cosmos' site states

13 March 2011

Lots of info and a picture starting to paint itself


Have you ever played Pictionary and when the person first starts drawing, it makes no sense, then over time it gets a bit more clear what they are trying to say?

Friday was a very big day for New York City expansion information. There were quotes positive about the Cosmos; the Wilpon family was thrown back into the thick of things; and there was even talk of other markets still being in the hunt. We tried to keep you updated as the day progressed, but now we take a deep breath and dissect it all.

Between the Grant Wahl's interview and the MLS conference call, there were many quotes in favor of what the Cosmos are doing. Garber even mentioned that feel confident the Cosmos have the financing in place to get everything done. However, citing lack of a stadium plan Garber feels the talks are "preliminary but positive"ck of a stadium plan Garber feels the talks are "preliminary but positive"

12 March 2011

Don't Forget!


11 March 2011

Garber Comments (update from conference call)

Just after Garber's interview with Grant Wahl was passed around, more of Garber talking
about New York expansion occurred via a press conference call on MLSnet.com.
Interesting comments:
  1. Garber mentions possibly partnering Wilpons with others
  2. Once again talks of the Wilpons and their "pretty darn good site for a soccer stadium"
  3. Garber on Cosmos "Discussions are preliminary but positive"
It seems Garber and his buddy Wilpon had a good discussion about MLS expansion, and it appears Wilpon's involvement is very much on the table. This is the first time Garber has mentioned Wilpon this intently and frequently since the Cosmos became the new kids on the block.

Is the perfect marriage of these two imminent?

Garber on the Cosmos and New York Expansion:


SI.com: The only group publicly aiming to be the 20th MLS team is the New York Cosmos.
Garber: Publicly.
SI.com: They've hired Eric Cantona, Pelé and Cobi Jones, among others. What are their chances?
Garber: I have a lot of respect for what [Cosmos CEO] Paul Kemsley and his partners have done to relaunch the Cosmos brand. They'll be the first to say to realize their goals, they need an MLS team, and we've been in detailed discussions with them to see whether or not that's something that can come to fruition. Before we can do that we need a stadium plan, which we don't have at this point, though we're making progress with the City of New York, which is supporting us on trying to find a suitable location. There are others much less public than the Cosmos who continue to express interest. Sometime by the end of the year we'll have a better sense as to where we're going with the 20th team. But I'm committed to trying to finalize a deal so it can be here in New York.
SI.com: The Wilpons are in dire financial straits these days with creditors demanding as much as a billion dollars after the Madoff affair. Now they're trying to sell part of the Mets. The Wilpons have to be out of the running for the 20th MLS team in New York and any stadium at this point, right?
Garber: They're not. We remain in discussions with them. I spent almost a day with them this past weekend. They continue to have interest in MLS, and they also have a pretty darn good stadium site. I have a lot of respect for Fred and Jeff Wilpon, and I think there's more to that story that's still to be told. They are good people and real sportsmen. I hope they're able to solve whatever their short-term issues are. But everything with MLS is long-term. I'm sure they'll get through their issues, and our decision here is going to be one for a generation. We've got to be sure we've got the right owner for the long term.
SI.com: Speaking of which, where is the Cosmos's financial backing coming from? The word I hear is the Middle East.
Garber: You'll have to get that answer from them. Certainly we wouldn't be in discussions with them if we didn't think they had the ability to purchase the team and pay what will be a record-setting expansion fee and also fund the construction of a stadium, which will require a significant amount of money.
SI.com: What is the current expansion fee price?
Garber: It's going to be a heck of a lot more than the last one, which was $40 million [for Montreal].

What does this mean?

Well if Garber is telling the truth and the Wilpons are still in this game, a team up of the Cosmos and the Mets spells a slam dunk.

The Cosmos according to Garber have the money for not only the Stadium, but the enormous franchise fee. Now throw in the "pretty darn good stadium site" and possible "middle eastern" investor, and you have to think ducks are in a row to get something done.

The only concern here is that Garber says the Stadium plan still is not there, however does mention discussions with the City of New York. Hopefully the Cosmos will clear up some of the stadium questions with The Borough Boys at the Q and A on March 23rd.

We all know Garber likes to speak vaguely at times, but with his constant talk of "getting something done in New York," fans of a team in NYC proper have something to be excited about.

08 March 2011

Q and A with The New York Cosmos - March 23rd at 7PM


Mark your Calendars!

On March 23rd the Borough Boys will host a Q and A with members of the New York Cosmos front office so that fans can ask the questions that are on their mind. The event will take place at 7PM and be at Legends Pub.

Please come on down and ask the questions you want to hear and mingle with members of the Cosmos front office and get an idea of what their plans are for the future.

More details to follow.

We will be accepting emailed and twitter questions which we will try to read off if you can not attend, however, the supporters in attendance will get the first questions.

07 March 2011

Borough Abroad: Hamburg, Germany

(Photo from Borough Boys Germany members Florian and Sonja)

06 March 2011

Looking for Cosmos gear? Upper 90 has it


If you are looking to get some Cosmos gear, why pay shipping and handling? Head down to one of the two great locations for Upper 90 Soccer + Sport.

Upper 90 is your source for footwear, replica jerseys and team wear, goalkeeping equipment and more. They also have a large variety of Cosmos gear. They are located at:

697 Amsterdam Avenue (at the corner of 94th Street)
New York, NY 10025
(646) 863-3105
Monday through Saturday:

359 Atlantic Avenue (between Hoyt and Bond Streets)
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(718) 643-0167 
Monday through Saturday:

Visit their website at: http://www.u90soccer.com/

04 March 2011

History Lesson: Harold the Chimp

(Photo from DNAinfo.com)

Real quick post today as it seems some New Yorkers were CONFUSED about pictures put up by the Cosmos organization. The photos in question are of Pele juxtaposed with a monkey. Apparently, it’s raised some questions about whether it is some sort of racial insult.

Of course, it is not. To clear up any confusion, the monkey in question is Harold the Chimp, the mascot for the Cosmos back in the 1970s. The Chimp, who was actually introduced at a press conference, would perform before matches juggling a ball to entertain the crowd.

However, the Chimp had the unfortunate issue of not being able to control his bladder, just ask Stanley Startzell, who was the teams token homegrown player at the time.