Raleigh Rushes for MLS Bid
Our current professional soccer team, the North Carolina Football Club (NCFC), is rolling out the red carpet for Major League Soccer executives who are visiting Raleigh today to see if we should be given a bid to join their league.
— North Carolina FC (@NorthCarolinaFC) July 18, 2017
The team will hold a public rally at 214 E. Martin Street in City Market at 5:00 pm to show MLS execs how badly we want to be an MLS team. During a morning press conference, NCFC owner Steve Malik will provide updates on the MLS bid process and progress towards a soccer stadium and entertainment center. That last part really sticks out. An “entertainment center” could mean anything. Could we be building a soccer stadium on top of the downtown canal? Could the entertainment center also be home to a future baseball team? Anything is possible.
If you haven’t been following this story, allow me to ITBring you up to speed.
1.) We have a professional soccer team in North Carolina.
2.) They were once called the “Carolina Railhawks” and they played in Cary. Surprisingly, the Town of Cary lifted the “all-beige ordinance” and allowed their field to be a natural green grass color.
3.) A guy named Jonny Steele played for the Railhawks. A few years ago, I met him through an ITB friend who was also on the team. Jonny Steele is one of the most legendary people I have ever met. That’s all I can say.
4.) Owner Steve Malik took over the team in 2015 and changed the team name to “North Carolina Football Club” or “NCFC” in December of 2016.
5.) Since 1929, the highest honor one could achieve while playing soccer was to play for Broughton.
6.) Major League Soccer is expanding their league and giving out bids. There are 12 other markets trying to get bids.
So where does Raleigh stand? We have a very impressive owner who wants an MLS team and wants it to play in a location where more people will attend games. He’ll be showing the MLS executives around Raleigh, meeting with local business leaders, and unveiling plans for a stadium. While I admire his efforts, I’m confused as to why we have to do any of this. If getting an MLS bid is anything like getting a Deb bid we shouldn’t even have to try. We’re from Raleigh. This is a birthright.
But, just to hedge our bets, I would encourage all Raleigh residents and soccer fans to show up at City Market today at 5:00 pm to show your support. I’ll provide more updates from the press conference that I’ll be attending, since I’m a media empire. Stay tuned.