Finally at last the St. Louis soccer fan base can celebrate, the MLS will make its way to the Gateway city after MLS chairman Don Garber announced St. Louis as the league’s 28th team.
It wasn’t easy and it wasn’t pretty, but credit to all of those involved in making sure this thing had a real shot. The Taylor family lead by Carolyn Kindle Betz, along with Jim Kavanaugh and World Wide Technology stayed committed to their wishes of bringing a team to St. Louis.
Despite political hurdles along the way that didn’t make the process any easier, ultimately the MLS wanted to be in St. Louis. As much heartache the city has had to endure over the past decade, sports have continued to be a positive influence in bringing the community together.
Sandwiched between Kansas City, Chicago and Nashville, it’s the perfect opportunity for the MLS to expand its brand throughout the Midwest, an area that’s produced a number of talented athletes.
Just look at the excitement surrounding international games and friendlies over the years in Downtown St. Louis. The crowds are massive.
Combined with the support Saint Louis FC has had in the USL, St. Louis has shown what kind of support the city has for soccer. As one of the first cities to bring soccer to America, the MLS is looking to capitalize on this opportunity and I have no doubt they will.
Whether you live in the city or the county, whether you lean left or right politically, one thing we can all get behind is our sports teams. St. Louis has always been a baseball town first and foremost, the Cardinals proven success over the past 50 years has shown that.
Though the Blues have shown it’s a hockey town too. With an underdog Stanley Cup run that will someday be made into a movie, the Blues scrappy style of play has made hockey the sport of choice as of late.
And now soccer comes into the fold with a majority female ownership group, an MLS first.
St. Louis continues to grow as an underdog city, once beaten down by political and racial unrest, is now starting to rebuild once again on the backbone of sports.
Sure we still have issues, every city does, but St. Louis is showing why it’s a city where people want to live and visit.
While the Rams moved out west for sunnier skies in Los Angeles, St. Louis continues to build with ownership groups and people that want to be here. Soccer is just the latest addition to the ever changing landscape.
Welcome to St. Louis, MLS. You won’t be disappointed.