Ft. Lauderdale Strikers working toward soccer-specific stadium, not a spot in MLS

By FRANCO PANIZO

FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla. — It is no secret that these days it is vital for lower division clubs to have a sparkling, brand new soccer-specific stadium or at least a remodeled one to be considered a serious soccer franchise. With it, however, usually comes talk of eventually wanting to jump into MLS.

For the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers, that is not the case.

It has been two weeks since the Strikers announced their plans to pursue a soccer-specific stadium, but they are not doing so with the idea of one day joining MLS. Instead, Ft. Lauderdale is simply aiming to secure a long-term future in NASL and as a professional club in South Florida.

“I think with what’s happened in NASL over the last several months and the year-and-a-half since its been in existence, there’s a feeling within our league that we should focus on growing our league,” Strikers managing director of team personnel and stadium development Tim Robbie told SBI. “That the aspirations to be in MLS is there because there’s such a gap between the MLS and our league. I think the pining that you hear about from people to get their franchises into MLS is because of that gap.

“I think if we do our job as a league and bridge that gap and bring our league up to a level with MLS, there won’t be clamoring for teams to leave our league to go to MLS and I think our league will be recognized on its own as being a league that’s strong enough to be on the same level as MLS.”

As part of that quest, Ft. Lauderdale is hoping to find a new or improved home for the Strikers in the near future. The Strikers currently play in antiquated Lockhart Stadium, but Robbie has changed positions (he was previously team president) in an effort to help the club find a more suitable place to call its home and have a bigger and better foothold in the local market.

“Our feeling and the feeling among our parent company Traffic Sports is in order to really cement the Strikers franchise in the South Florida community, we need to have a state-of-the-art facility that we can call home for long term,” said Tim Robbie. “If you’ve been here before and know what Lockhart is like, in order to be a facility that fans in this day and age are accustomed to seeing and having for professional sports, you’ve got to do some substantial upgrades to Lockhart to bring it up to modern standards, and that’s an option.”

Lockhart, which opened in 1959 and was renovated in 1998 to house the now-defunct Miami Fusion, has been linked for a few years now with a possible water park that would be built by Texas-based company Schlitterbahn on the current land the stadium is on. Lockhart could be remodeled as part of the deal but nothing is set in stone.

Still, there appears to be reason for optimism.

“It’s been sort of an off and on negotiation between the water park developer and the city of Ft. Lauderdale and FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) that owns the land here,” said Robbie. “If you would have asked me six months ago, ‘Is that water park deal ever going to happen?” I would have said, ‘Probably not.’ Now, I think it’s possible again because at least the sides are talking again.”

The other, and likely costlier option, is to build a soccer-specific stadium from scratch elsewhere in South Florida. Robbie did not reveal any potential locations, saying the most viable options are at “sensitive points” and “talking about them would do more harm than good”. But he expressed an optimism that he confessed he did not have recently.

“If you would’ve asked me six months ago, ‘Do you think you guys could ever get a soccer-specific stadium for the Strikers?’ I would have said, ‘Not any time soon,’” said Robbie. “Now with the conversations we’ve had over the last few months, I would say that the prospects for doing that are much brighter than I would’ve thought six months ago.”

While the Strikers are focusing on upgrading Lockhart or constructing a new home, there is no timetable for when they would like to have their new project complete. Robbie believes the club is not in a position to be so rigid so as to set a timeframe and is looking at the long-term picture rather than focusing on a certain date, but stated that sooner is better.

Robbie also said the Strikers are looking at all options in terms of funding, such as public-private sponsorship or an entrepreneur coming in and doing it on his own. The Strikers would have to serve as the major tenant in the latter scenario, but that would be an upgrade over their current deal.

The Strikers are currently on a year-to-year deal with the FAA, which owns the land that Lockhart is own as well as the neighboring Ft. Lauderdale Executive Airport. The club will be back at Lockhart in 2013, but having to face uncertainty at the end of every year is frustrating for Robbie. In addition, even if Traffic wanted to upgrade Lockhart on its own, they would need permission from the FAA first. Otherwise, they could risk being booted from the area on any given year.

That is why the search for a long-term solution has begun, even if there is no plan to become a part of MLS.

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57 Responses to Ft. Lauderdale Strikers working toward soccer-specific stadium, not a spot in MLS

  1. Bobb says:

    No team with Ft. Lauderdale in its name will ever join MLS, so it’s just not a good fit. They could play there, but you don’t see team names like “Carson” “Santa Clara” “Frisco” “Foxboro” etc.
    They should change their name to Miami Strikers but the city of Ft Lauderdale may not like that if they’re helping them with the soccer stadium.

    • Bobb says:

      I forgot Harrison, Sandy, Bridgeview, Chester, Commerce City….

      • MLSsnob says:

        How about South Florida Strikers or SF Strikers, this way you don’t have to be a team named Miami based in Ft. Lauderdale and you don’t have to be located in one of the worst sports markets in America and you still get to keep your history?

    • jonf says:

      apparently bobb, with two b s on the end, you no idea about the history of the strikers. Also, it is not imperative to have a huge recognizable city name for the team, i believe mls has reached the moment were the mls team could put an outlining city on the map.

      • MLSsnob says:

        Disagree there. In order for public perception for MLS to be taken seriously as a main stream league then you can’t have fringe cities as franchise holders. One or two is OK such as Jacksonville in the NFL or Columbus in the NHL, but it has to be the exception, not the rule, especially for a league like MLS who are struggling with mainstream media and for TV ratings.

        • T-lover says:

          What? All leagues fringe cities as franchise. Not If you are not in NY,BOSTON,LA and CHICAGO. Then Your market is a fringe city.

          • MLSsnob says:

            No offense to the names about to be mentioned but I think every one would agree that cities like Tampa, Atlanta, Phoneix, Seattle,San Diego, Dallas and San Francisco just to name a few are a cut above Portland, Oklahoma City and Indianapolis who all house major sports franchises.

        • Josh D says:

          That’s quite a silly statement. In order for MLS to be taken seriously we need butts in seats, viewers watching on TV, and money. Who cares where the team is located?

      • Bobb says:

        And those not-as-recognizable city names that may one day be MLS names are places like Orlando, San Antonio, Minneapolis, Indianapolis, etc. not Fort Lauderdale.

        Every MLS team is named after the larges city in their metropolitan area, there is no good reason to change that. Other expansion teams will also be named after the largest city in the area. If there is ever a team in south Florida, it will be called Miami, not Ft. Lauderdale. You may not like it, but them’s the facts.

        • meh says:

          Ft. Lauderdale is not a suburb of Miami, Bobb. Get that through your head.

          And learn some US soccer history, for crying out load. Pro soccer in South Florida means the Ft. Lauderdale Strikers, not the Miami whatevers. Pro soccer failed multiple times in Miami, and succeeded in Ft. Lauderdale.

          You may not like it, but them’s the facts.

          • Bobb says:

            Look you are from the area, and clearly biased pro-FtL anti-Miami.
            IDGAF about Florida, I’m just stating a fact about the largest and most well known city in a metropolitan area. Now you’re actually denying that it’s all one metropolitan area?
            That’s just false:

            link to en.wikipedia.org

            “The OMB defines the MSA as comprising Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties—Florida’s three most populous counties—with principal cities including Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Pompano Beach, West Palm Beach, and Boca Raton.”

    • Sean says:

      I actually think soccer fans are different enough that’s they’d support their clubs with more local names: Harrison Red Bulls, Commerce City FC, Corona Park Rangers, Queens FC, Frisco FC, etc. well, I know I would love it.

    • meh says:

      You don’t know what you’re talking about, Bobb.

      You might as well clam that “No team with San Jose in its name will ever join MLS, so it’s just not a good fit. They could play there, but you don’t see team names like “Carson” “Santa Clara” “Frisco” “Foxboro” etc.”

      Ft. Lauderdale is every bit as much its own city with its own identity as San Jose is. It isn’t a suburb of Miami, any more than San Jose is a suburb of San Francisco or Oakland. It’s sheer ignorance to claim otherwise.

      The old NASL failed twice in Miami, then moved to Ft. Lauderdale and succeeded. In every era, soccer has drawn better in Ft. Lauderdale than in Miami. That’s just a fact.

      The Strikers may not be talking or thinking about MLS right now, which is fine. Concentrate on what you are doing in the here and now. But there’s no reason why they could not go to MLS in the future, when their SSS situation is sorted out and when maybe when they have a billionaire or two added to their current ownership group.

      • Bobb says:

        Re: You might as well clam that “No team with San Jose in its name will ever join MLS, so it’s just not a good fit.”

        San Jose is the most populous city in not just the bay area but all of Northern California. No team would name themselves Santa Clara Earthquakes, which is the town where both the Quakes current stadium and their planed stadium are. Santa Clara is not known internationally. San Jose is: it’s home to some of the largest and most well known companies in the US. Silicon Valley, you may have heard of it so I won’t list the dozens of Fortune 500 companies there. Oakland has a fraction of the population, an even smaller fraction of the money, and maybe one or two major companies based there:

        “It isn’t a suburb of Miami, any more than San Jose is a suburb of San Francisco or Oakland.”

        10. San Jose 967k
        14. San Francisco 814k
        46. Oakland 395k

        And where’s your Ft. Lauderdale?
        140. Fort Lauderdale 168k

        • MLSsnob says:

          The city of Ft. Lauderdale itself has a population of 168k but like every major city the bulk of its population lays outside its city limits. For every Ft. Lauderdale you have cities like Hollywood, Lauderhill, Pembroke Pines, Davie and Weston just to name a few, with huge Hispanic populations and a proven attendance record to support the Strikers. I think we all would agree that Miami shouldn’t be given a franchise based on their proven track record of screwing it up but we would also agree that MLS is not going to award a franchise to Ft. Lauderdale and pass up cities like Tampa, Orlando and Miami with out at least rebranding their name to identify with the entire South Florida metro area.

    • Leo says:

      The Miami Fusion used to play in the stadium that the Strikers now inhabit. Fort Lauderdale, Miami, it’s whatever. No one living here really cares.

  2. evan says:

    Alrite, let’s keep the NASL coverage coming thanks

  3. MLSsnob says:

    If there ever is going to be a South Florida MLS team, it should be the Strikers. At least with that option there is a built in fan base, history and potential stadium. With a team based in Miami, they would ask fans to get on board with a club that has no sense of history or emotional pull. That’s a lot to ask for a VERY fickle sports market that has trouble pulling in fans for arguably the greatest player in NBA history, the nations most popular sport and a team that has won 2 World Series titles recently. I’m just not sure it’s worth it just for the sake of having Miami on your name.

    • Tyler K. says:

      Agreed. The Miami market is notorious for not supporting their teams regardless of their record. Do they really deserve to have a soccer team representing them? Personally, I prefer that they stay Ft. Lauderdale.

    • slowleftarm says:

      Agree although I think your assessment of the Marlins is a bit glib.

      Further proof that eventually MLS 2 with pro/rel is the way to go because there are more markets that can support a pro soccer club than can possibly fit in one league!

  4. Gnarls says:

    That’s the right attitude from Ft. Lauderdale. Focus on growing the second division and making it respectable. The lower divisions have a certain level of flexibility not afforded to MLS in terms of tinkering with the structure, format, etc., as evidenced by the move to the apertura/clausura style seasons. I think that’s great for American soccer. Keep it up.

    • Charles says:

      yeah, remember the first team to do that was the Sounders. Oki ( owner ) didn’t like the way MLS was set up. He was a great owner. All the profits or 2% of revenue went to charity.

      After many years of being very small he sold to Hanauer, even while it played at the current stadium it was still small until Hanauer jumped at the chance to move to MLS.

      Not rooting against it, rooting for all US soccer to succeed…..just saying.

  5. T-lover says:

    This guy is smoking something, NASL will always be a second div. It took MLS 17 years to get to this point, it will take 10-12 for the NASL to be where MLS is now. By then MLS will be even better.

  6. Dean Stell says:

    I love what this guy is doing. All the focus on MLS expansion wears me out. MLS is fine and growing nicely, but what we really need to enhance things is a stronger second division and some good regional leagues. It would give everyone in the country the opportunity to watch good soccer locally and give more opportunities for player development.

    I think a reasonable goal is for the NASL to have their champion be arguable better than a mid-tier MLS team. I’d love to see promotion/relegation and that can’t happen until the second tier is is much stronger shape.

    • T-lover says:

      I”m all for a strong second division. However this guy is talking like NASL, will be just as good as MLS. Which is a joke, considering how long it took MLS to be climb to the top, and still have so ways to go. NASL will always be a second division, which means you will always see clubs wanting to go to MLS. If MLS did have P/R I would only want it between two divisions and for them to still have a playoff system.

      • Sean says:

        I don’t think that is what he is saying. I think what he is saying is lets focus on making our second division work and have a meaningful identity that attracts fans and builds real homes for our clubs. And that sounds like a fresh approach that fans could get behind.

        • RAMONE says:

          I think that is what he should be saying, but if you read his quotes ….

          “I think if we do our job as a league and bridge that gap and bring our league up to a level with MLS, there won’t be clamoring for teams to leave our league to go to MLS and I think our league will be recognized on its own as being a league that’s strong enough to be on the same level as MLS.”

          Twice there he states the goal is to have an equal league to MLS – a domestic competitor. That is a problem because I really doubt USSF and the CSF are suddenly going to drop MLS in the pyramid. I absolutely agree it is a GREAT sign that there is so much interest in SSSs and growth of the second division (otherwise any thoughts of pro-rel are never going to happen) because it IS going to take teams who are consistently competitive with the worst MLS teams on the field, at the box office, and in the front office in their ability to attract money for pro-rel to work.

          If you would have dropped Toronto, Chivas and Portland this last season in favor of bringing up San Antonio (average attendance = 9176 ), Tampa Bay (average attendance = 3609), and Puerto Rico (average attendance = 1864 …. not to mention their stadium is a total disaster having watched USL teams play there in the past). Very difficult to argue that is a like for like trade. If they all were getting San Antonio numbers consistently, then we may be talking, but the result would be that those teams would be even worse than Portland, Toronto and Chivas, be back in NASL the next year and the Timbers, TFC and Goats would dominate NASL. Hardly seems like a stable pro-rel system.

  7. Beto says:

    Every club from mls to nasl to usl should be looking for some perminant real estate. Only way to ensure longevity. Way to go strikers and glad to hear the sss movement has extended into the lower divisions of us soccer.

  8. AzTeXan says:

    It’s the hottest, coolest time in Texas, come plaaaaaaayy, Schlitterbahn bahn bahn.

  9. Steve says:

    Any way u look at it it’s a positive development for soccer in America and south Florida

  10. F19 says:

    Excuse me Bobb, but Fort Lauderdale is not some tiny suburb of Miami. It is not Carson, Harrison, Chester, or Frisco. It’s a big city with it’s own identity and loads of soccer history. Forget Miami exists for a moment. Let’s call Broward County the Fort Lauderdale metro area. That’s 1.75 Million people on it’s own. Bigger than or close to the metro areas of 5 current MLS markets (Columbus, San Jose, Kansas City, Salt Lake City and Portland). That’s not even accounting for neighboring Palm Beach County to the north and it’s 1.3 million people, who like Broward, are more Anglo-centric demographically and more inclined to not turn their nose up at domestic soccer. And they certainly won’t be driving over an hour to Miami to see games.

    Fort Lauderdale still is a very recognizable name in world soccer. George Best, Ray Hudson, Gordon Banks, Ray Hudson, Gerd Müller and Nene Cubillas played for the Fort Lauderdale Strikers. The current reincarnated Strikers are averaging higher attendance than the Seattle Sounders did during their D2 stint.

    Then there is the fact that no professional soccer team has ever had anything close to decent support in Miami proper, 2 of the teams moving north, becoming the Fort Lauderdale Strikers to massive upticks in support. There is no suitable place to play in Miami-Dade County, zero public support or money for a new venue, and no suitable location to put one if there was.

    From a statistical/census standpoint South Florida is one market, but in reality it’s two. It’s not like any other “twin cities” area, Miami and Fort Lauderdale are much more culturally different than places like Minny/St. Paul, Tampa/St. Pete etc. are. MLS did not understand that in 1997/98 when they kept the stupid “Miami” branding even after fixing up and committing to Lockhart. They tarnished the reputation of what before MLS was one of the most respected soccer markets in the country(they did the same thing in TB, pissed on the history).

    That all being said, if MLS is too good for Fort Lauderdale, then they can go play in Miami on plastic grass at FIU Stadium with washed up Latin stars in front of 5,000 people. Good for them. I’ll be at Lockhart, or perhaps a new Strikers stadium, and I won’t be alone.

    Fort Lauderdale ‘Til I Die!

    • Augustus Lafontaine says:

      F19

      Miami Strikers of Fort Lauderdale

      Sounds Familiar; Rings a Bell

      Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

      I know you mentioned Metro Areas but stop crying for help.
      Let’s take a look at this from a City to City comparison.

      The city of Fort Lauderdale is not even half of Anaheim population.
      City of Anaheim 2011 Population 341,361
      City of Fort Lauderdale 2011 Population 168,528

      The city of Fort Lauderdale is nowhere near these MLS cities in population, don’t make me laugh.
      City of Columbus 2011 Population 797,434
      City of San Jose 2011 Population 967,487
      City of Portland 2011 Population 593,820

      These teams which are similar to Fort Lauderdale in population DO NOT have a major city (World Renown) near them. THEY ARE the major city in their respective states. CAPICHE!
      Kansas City 2011 Population 146,453
      Salt Lake City 2011 Population 189,899

      The city of Fort Lauderdale fits in this category, cities near cities which are World Renown. CAPICHE!
      City of Fort Lauderdale 2011 Population 168,528 (MIAMI)( MLS MIAMI ?)
      City of Frisco, Texas 2011 Population 121,387 (DALLAS) (FC Dallas)
      Carson, CA 2011 Population 92,376 (Los Angeles) (LA Galaxy) (Chivas USA)

      Conclusion: Central & South Americans have heard about Miami. Europeans have heard about Miami. Australians and the rest of Oceania have heard about Miami. The people of the great continents of Asia and Africa have heard about Miami.

      Point Blank Conclusion: Miami = $$$$$$$ in revenue worldwide………. C A P I C H E !

      Source
      U.S. Department of Commerce United States Census Bureau
      link to quickfacts.census.gov

      • Bobb says:

        Thank you for talking some sense into these Ft Lauderdale fanboys with actual facts and figures…

        • MLSsnob says:

          News flash Bobb, the Florida Marlins were until recently located in Miami Gardens, 10 minutes south of downtown Ft. Lauderdale from turnpike. The Florida Panthers are based in Sawgrass, a suburb of Ft. Lauderdale, the already have mutilple franchises.

    • Bobb says:

      No one is talking about WHERE the team’s stadium should be located, we are talking about the NAME of the team.
      They can play in Ft. Lauderdale and call themselves Miami Strikers.

      • MLSsnob says:

        You can’t name a team Miami and expect funding from the city of Ft. Lauderdale, no politician in their right mind would support that, also I conceed that you can’t have them named Ft. Lauderdale either. But they absolutley should not be located any where near Miami’s city limits.

        • Wilmer Cabrera says:

          The team and stadium would be funded by it’s owner, investors and not by a city, county or state. The stadium should be built in a city that makes sense to all parties. All you folks have to do is show up to the games and pack that brand spankin’ new stadium out.

    • MLSsnob says:

      +1, but there has to be a name change from Ft. Lauderdale to something like Florida or South Florida, much like the Marlins and Panthers.

  11. Augustus Lafontaine says:

    Miami Strikers of Fort Lauderdale

    Sounds Familiar; Rings a Bell

    Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

    I know you mentioned Metro Areas but stop crying for help.
    Let’s take a look at this from a City to City comparison.

    The city of Fort Lauderdale is not even half of Anaheim population.
    City of Anaheim 2011 Population 341,361
    City of Fort Lauderdale 2011 Population 168,528

    The city of Fort Lauderdale is nowhere near these MLS cities in population, don’t make me laugh.
    City of Columbus 2011 Population 797,434
    City of San Jose 2011 Population 967,487
    City of Portland 2011 Population 593,820

    These teams which are similar to Fort Lauderdale in population DO NOT have a major city (World Renown) near them. THEY ARE the major city in their respective states. CAPICHE!
    Kansas City 2011 Population 146,453
    Salt Lake City 2011 Population 189,899

    The city of Fort Lauderdale fits in this category, cities near cities which are World Renown. CAPICHE!
    City of Fort Lauderdale 2011 Population 168,528 (MIAMI)( MLS MIAMI ?)
    City of Frisco, Texas 2011 Population 121,387 (DALLAS) (FC Dallas)
    Carson, CA 2011 Population 92,376 (Los Angeles) (LA Galaxy) (Chivas USA)

    Conclusion: Central & South Americans have heard about Miami. Europeans have heard about Miami. Australians and the rest of Oceania have heard about Miami. The people of the great continents of Asia and Africa have heard about Miami.

    Point Blank Conclusion: Miami = $$$$$$$ in revenue worldwide………. C A P I C H E !

    Source
    U.S. Department of Commerce United States Census Bureau
    link to quickfacts.census.gov

    • MLSsnob says:

      See comments listed above. Being a resident of South Florida I can tell you that a franchise in Miami WILL NEVER WORK! End of story, you can talk about name recognition all you want, they’ve tried and failed, multiple times in every sport so to think that this time it’ll be different is a baseless argument. If you want to support an idea that in the long term will be detrimental to the league be my guest, just don’t say we didn’t warn you…

      • Willy says:

        No one is talking about WHERE the team’s stadium should be located, we are talking about the NAME of the team.

  12. Eggbert says:

    New stadium, old stadium. Atlanta will continue to school these clowns regardless.

  13. Louie says:

    With all that’s going on with the NASL and Fox Soccer losing a lot of it’s live soccer what does everyone think the chances are of them picking up the NASL and NWSL?

    • Eddy Curry says:

      I personally think it would be monumental for those 2 leagues to get on Fox or quite frankly any other reputable station, on a permanent bases. For the National Women’s Soccer League to stick around, it’s going to need more than that 1 televised game per week that WPS was alloted. NASL on the other hand need to revamp their infrastructure, bring in more investors. At the moment traffic holds to many teams and while that is better than nothing, how long will they be able to sustain them. So Yeah, very very important for this to pay dividends.

  14. catfish says:

    I personally like Ft. Lauderdale Strikers as the brand. I can’t help but think of EPL teams that take on names of their location – Chelsea, Fulham etc. I by no means and comparing London to Miami and no doubt there will neer be 2 teams in that metro area. But I see no need to include Miami in the franchise brand. Plus I appreciate the history behind it. Much the same as I don;t like someone else trying to compete with Rowdies in Tampa (who play in St. Pete correct?). One aspect of the article that I do like is the stated plan to focus on growing NASL. With more SSS in the lower tiers (a la Pittsburgh) it will only be good for the game and will make the lower tiers more stable. I love we are continually having these dpbates about how the sport should grow. Better than the women’s game that can’t stay afloat more than 3-5 years without folding.

    • catfish says:

      Wow I need spell check.

    • MLSsnob says:

      Your comparison to the EPL doesn’t work. There is no direct comparison to another league because most other big leagues play in countries that have to identify with their area to be more specific otherwise you’d have 5 teams name FC London.

      • PetedeLA says:

        Seems like you’re making a good point, but that’s not the way it works, and judging by your moniker, you already know that.

        Teams in Europe mostly began as city teams. It was only later that they started to branch out. I’m no expert on England, but I know that when I lived in Hamburg, only HSV and maybe a handful of other clubs had “Hamburg” in their names. The really old clubs (and we’re talking clubs that began in the 1800′s) mostly just focused on playing city rivals. Then different leagues and tournaments came along and identities and ambitions changed.

        Although you may feel that Ft Lauderdale does not send a signal to the international community that something Miami related would, Ft Lauderdale does indeed have a history. Shoot! George Best and Gerd Mueller played there. You can’t buy that!

        Gelsenkirchen (Schalke), Hoffenheim, Unterhaching (was in the Bundesliga 8 years ago) are tiny towns!

        Let’s use Sankt Pauli as an example, because I used to live near there.

        Sankt Pauli is a district. It is known to Germans, some Europeans, some beer drinkers, some die hard Beatles fans, and soccer fanatics. In this country maybe 1 out of 1000 people know what Sankt Pauli is. From that number even less know that there is an FC Sankt Pauli. But that doesn’t take away from its clout really. Let the club’s soccer history speak for it.

        All they need to do is sign Ronaldinho. Yes, old Ronaldinho. And they would be instantly famous.

        Yes… I know there was some rambling in there. I’m on vacation!

        • Willy says:

          Banks, Best, Cubillas, Muller, Segota & the rest of those great players played for the Strikers Brand. They could care less about where the team was based from. It was all about “Show Me The Money”.

          Miami is known as an International City and the World could care less about baseball and pretty much any other sport other than soccer.

          When I go on business trips to europe, one of the constants I get is “When is the Great International City of Miami getting an MLS team”. Another is ” You guys are really missing out on a huge boost of International TV Revenue for the league”.

          Like someone else already posted, this looks like it could be one of those awkward situations.

          Miami Strikers of Fort Lauderdale

          Either that or some entrepreneur saves the day for you Miami loathers.

          OR

          The Strikers Brand moves back to Minnesota with it’s State of the Art stadium about to be built for both MLS & NFL.

  15. Leo says:

    For those of you posting statistics about Fort Lauderdale without coming within two hundred miles of the city limits…

    Seriously. You have no idea what you’re talking about.

    • Willy says:

      Take your grumblings out on the U.S. Department of Commerce United States Census Bureau.

      City limits are after all city limits.

      link to quickfacts.census.gov
      Reply

      • Leo says:

        Like I said, if you’ve never been here, then you don’t know anything other than what you looked up on the internet.

        I know what the population of Fort Lauderdale is. I live in it. What *you* don’t understand is that the greater Fort Lauderdale area (the county that Fort Lauderdale is in) has a population of almost 2 million. That’s population that has nothing to do with Miami-Dade or Palm Beach.

        But I suppose you’re going to look at a web page and try to lecture me about it. Idiot.

        • Willy says:

          I understand the difference between a County and a City You DOLT!

          What you don’t seem to get in your thin skull of yours:

          The name Fort Lauderdale is not attractive to MLS much less any other major sport.(NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL etc.)

  16. Bill says:

    Don’t waste my tax dollars on another stadium…..They cant fill the seats they have now….yea the place is old, but recall the old ugly orange bowl. They have been trying for how long to sell seats 30 plus years. sounds like a bad marriage to me. BUT GO STRIKERS