Offseason Update – Lou City To MLS!? Lou City vs MLS! Home Opener!
Lou City To MLS?
“On the men’s side, we’ve never really made a push towards MLS. We always had the goal of getting our business to a sustainable point, which included building the stadium. We’ve done that and we’ve built out our academy infrastructure,” Brad Estes, the Louisville City and Racing Louisville president, tells SportBusiness.
“As we continue with this venture, we will make a decision as to whether we want to go and push for MLS. If we were to do that, we would need to restructure some things from an ownership perspective because obviously getting into MLS, someone has to write a probably at this point $350m check,” Estes said.
In 2018, it was reported that “Mayor Greg Fischer’s officials have been in regular contact with Major League Soccer for “a while” to see what Louisville needs to do to position itself as an expansion candidate, according to Jeff Mosley, the city’s general counsel and former deputy chief for Louisville Forward, the city’s economic development arm.” Although that report doesn’t appear to include the actual club in the mix, later comments from Brad Estes insinuate that they have had similar thinking. In a 2019 Courier Journal piece, Brad stated, "If making a move to the MLS in the future makes sense, we’ll certainly look at it," Estes said. "As of now, our focus as a club has not changed.”
The club has always been ambitious and has never really ruled anything out. For those that are staunchly anti-MLS, fear not. There would be a very long road ahead even if the club came out and stated that they are all in on moving to the MLS. Money would certainly be a big hurdle. There is also already a heavy MLS presence in the region, not to mention that it’s not unreasonable that Indy may be a more appealing market. Despite the crowd in this part of the country, Taylor Sorrels makes some really good points about MLS markets being hyper-localized. I share a lot of the same thoughts he captures in his post. If we stay in the USL, I am at peace with that. If we go to the MLS, I just want to ensure that it is done right. Although, I do not see it happening. Not much more to it than the quote above with Brad leaving the door open to the possibility, but I guess we will see with time.
Lou City vs MLS
In less controversial news, the club has two MLS preseason matches under their belt. The first being a 3-0 win over FC Cincinnati. Beating a club with a ton more resource and allowing the 15-year-old Joshua Wynder to get some action is certainly a nice start. If you are a Twitter user, I’m sure you saw the love exchanged between the two fan bases. Regardless if Cindy was “prepared” or “trying to win”, it’s always nice to get one over on your rivals despite it only being a preseason match. I’d encourage you to check out PurpleProse’swrite-up on the match. Glad to see a new content creator in the mix!
The following 4-0 loss to Nashville was a bit more of a reality check. Coach Hackworth mentioned on the relaunched Soccer City Radio that the squad has been experimenting with a new formation. It’s possible that was a contributing factor. If they are going to lose, I’d prefer they get that out of their system in the preseason. You can check out PurpleProse’s write-up here and Taylor’s Purple Press write-up here. Austin and Houston are up next and some youngsters have made the trip so here’s to hoping they can see some minutes to aid in their development.
2021 Regular Season – Coming Soon
Home openers were released today and much to my surprise, we’ll be kicking things off before May! On April 24th, Atlanta United 2 will get to experience a match in Lynn Family Stadium. Assuming that ATL2 is as weak as USL Tactics and I are speculating, this could be a bit of an easier home start than last season’s match against Pittsburgh (hey, at least we got the first goal). It’s nice to finally have a date to count down to.
If you are a Racing fan, don't forget to donate and get a chance at winning a signed ball! This is a Cooper's Angle's Share initiative that will be supporting the Junior League of Louisville in honor on #WomensHistoryMonth.