Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Team Names

Over at the Soccer Insider Steve Goff wrote (quoting Don Garber):

As for the push in Seattle to name the club the Sounders — something that MLS adamantly opposes — Garber said: “The good thing about team branding is that it involves a lot of people and there are passionate views on different sides of the issue. I believe our league and the sport has come so much further than the days of the NASL. While we have the name ‘Earthquakes’, I am very focused in trying to have our teams look forward as opposed to look back. That’s not taking away from the value of the ‘Sounders’ ... I think there is tremendous history there and a very passionate fan base but I am thinking about what this team is going to be 20 years from now or 50 years from now because that’s how long team brand names should exist.”

The club will allow fans to vote for the club name: Seattle Republic, Seattle Alliance or Seattle FC.

Say what?!? The Sounders name goes back to 1974 … so that’s 34 years of history. How in the world can someone claim (with a straight face) that ‘the Seattle Republic’ or ‘the Seattle Alliance’ positions a team better for the future than ‘the Seattle Sounders’? Throwing away the history and goodwill of the Sounders name is just silly. To choose names like Alliance or Republic instead seems even worse. I guess the good news is that if they choose Seattle FC, the fans can always use the Sounders as a nickname.

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