November 18, 2010

Sporting Kansas City: What to Make Of The MLS Club's New Name

Robb Heinemann, the Kansas City Wizards President, made an announcement last night about the incoming changes for the club, and how he wants to construct a world-class club that their fans can be proud of.

This "club" however, will no longer be regarded as the Wizards. Instead, they will known as Sporting Kansas City. Presumably a solute to Portugal's Sporting Lisbon.

Throughout the latter half of the Major League Soccer season, the Kansas City Wizards kept hinting a change in the club's appearance to come in 2011.

Fans were anticipating a change in their club's name to compliment their new era in their new stadium, tentatively named KC Soccer Stadium.

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My only worry about this, is the same as yours: the reception. Although, Heinemann claims the name alludes to the "sporting culture" of the Kansas City area, it just does not seem to reflect on the area well; even if the club has plans to add a lacrosse and rugby team to SKC, making it a true 'sporting club'.

Amid likely criticism, the new name will probably receive the same types of criticism that Real Salt Lake suffered in their early years; however, there seems to be less attention to the club's name, possibly due to their recent success in MLS and CONCACAF Champions League play.

Perhaps if Sporting KC achieves just that (like Heinemann promises), it may just grow on them.

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Tyler Walter

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