Montreal To Address MLS Bid

Montreal To Address MLS Bid

  • Posted by Drew Epperley
  • On November 24, 2008
  • 4 Comments
  • Expansion Hopefuls, MLS Expansion, Montreal Expansion

Joey Saputo, owner of USL-1 Montreal de Impact.

As we all heard on Friday at the Commissioner’s Address, Montreal backed out of the MLS expansion race for this round of expansion. Or did they?

Reports out of Canada suggest that some communication between the two parties was not good in the weeks leading up to Commissioner Don Garber’s announcement about their dropped bid.

The group said in a statement late Saturday that it was the league, not them, that withdrew the bid. Saputo is scheduled to meet with the media on Monday morning to further address the issue.

Garber had said Montreal’s delegation informed him within the past week of possible trouble.

“Montreal has had to evaluate what kinds of private capital they needed to refinance their stadium, to fund the expansion fee, and what kind of public support would be available,” the commissioner said.

“I’m not sure they were able to come to terms in this economic environment.”

Obviously more will come out today from Saputo at his press conference. It sort of sounds like to me it wasn’t about the stadium upgrades or anything of that nature. It may have come down to the expansion fee itself or the worry that they wouldn’t get picked due to strong bids from cities like Miami. Which is a big of a shock considering the group leading the front for Montreal, they had the money and a strong enough bid to get it done.

It could have also come down to other variables that we just don’t know of yet. Either way once we get more details it will be more clear why they dropped out or why the league dropped them from the race. I just have a weird feeling that it doesn’t exactly mean they were dropped due to money or the global economy here.

What did you all make of the Montreal news? Obviously I know there were parties in Miami, Portland and St. Louis and maybe one or two in Vancouver or Ottawa.

  • Scrumpy Jack

    I don't even know where to begin with this … First of all , there are a few things to make clear , the problem is not money , nor is it an interest in the game , these are two things Montreal have plently of ( Saputo / Gilette + attendance at games ) . Montreal has always been the most knowledgeable football city in North America ( I refuse to call it soccer ). <br />
    <br />
    The problem is that Don Garber knows doesn't know squat about football and thinks that you can Americanize the sport even if it hasn't worked in the past and it won't work now and there in lies the problem ! A team owner like Joey Saputo who knows the sport and George Gillette who owns one of the most historic and greatest teams in the sport is not gonna be told what to do by a moron who thinks that a playoff system and a non relegation system are the way to go ! Don Garber thinks that it's perfectly OK to play football (soccer) on an artiticial turf with the American Football grid painted on the field . And if it was up to him he would stop the game for commercials. I could go on and on about why the top brass at the MLS have made mistake upon mistake but that would be like redundant . <br />
    <br />
    That fact is that Joey Saputo or George Gilltte are not '' YES MEN '' which is what Don Garber so desperately wants. They would actually be a valuable asset to the league because of their knowledge and experience and even their passion for sports in general as opposed to the suits that own the other MLS teams that see it as a tax write off . And only a fool or self serving leech would think that an Atlanta or a Portland would make better football cities than Montreal . <br />
    <br />
    In my opinion to not understand '' relegation '' is to not understand the game in the context of a league and to expect people to watch a meaningless football season where 14 of the 18 teams automatically qualify for '' playoffs '' is purposterous ! <br />
    <br />
    People are not stupid here , and the fact remains that we understand that if it's worth doing , it's worth doing right ! And no cheerleaders or grid lines or self-serving pseudo stars will intimidate us into giving in to mr Garber's brand of football … If a natural rivalry between Montreal &amp; Toronto and a palpable ambiance in packed stadiums isn't a priority for the supposed thinkers at MLS , then their work is done ! <br />
    <br />
    Keep up the good work 😉 <br />
    It's their loss not ours !

  • Scrumpy Jack

    I don’t even know where to begin with this … First of all , there are a few things to make clear , the problem is not money , nor is it an interest in the game , these are two things Montreal have plently of ( Saputo / Gilette + attendance at games ) . Montreal has always been the most knowledgeable football city in North America ( I refuse to call it soccer ).

    The problem is that Don Garber knows doesn’t know squat about football and thinks that you can Americanize the sport even if it hasn’t worked in the past and it won’t work now and there in lies the problem ! A team owner like Joey Saputo who knows the sport and George Gillette who owns one of the most historic and greatest teams in the sport is not gonna be told what to do by a moron who thinks that a playoff system and a non relegation system are the way to go ! Don Garber thinks that it’s perfectly OK to play football (soccer) on an artiticial turf with the American Football grid painted on the field . And if it was up to him he would stop the game for commercials. I could go on and on about why the top brass at the MLS have made mistake upon mistake but that would be like redundant .

    That fact is that Joey Saputo or George Gilltte are not ” YES MEN ” which is what Don Garber so desperately wants. They would actually be a valuable asset to the league because of their knowledge and experience and even their passion for sports in general as opposed to the suits that own the other MLS teams that see it as a tax write off . And only a fool or self serving leech would think that an Atlanta or a Portland would make better football cities than Montreal .

    In my opinion to not understand ” relegation ” is to not understand the game in the context of a league and to expect people to watch a meaningless football season where 14 of the 18 teams automatically qualify for ” playoffs ” is purposterous !

    People are not stupid here , and the fact remains that we understand that if it’s worth doing , it’s worth doing right ! And no cheerleaders or grid lines or self-serving pseudo stars will intimidate us into giving in to mr Garber’s brand of football … If a natural rivalry between Montreal & Toronto and a palpable ambiance in packed stadiums isn’t a priority for the supposed thinkers at MLS , then their work is done !

    Keep up the good work 😉
    It’s their loss not ours !

  • Marco del Norte

    I completely agree with Scrumpy Jack!<br />
    <br />
    And I thought that the MLS and Garber were serious. He's missing the boat on that one. This is ridiculous. Hopefully Montreal will go far in the Concacaf Champions League and put that in Garber's face. How does Toronto get a 10 000 000 franchise fee and Montreal should pay 40 000 000 just a few years later? I almost hope that some desperate MLS teams fold next year to prove I wrong they went. They sure don't do their homeworks, because they would know that Montreal has all the tools to succeed at the highest level. A big and knowledgeable fanbase, a brand new stadium, owners who have money. Garber, what's your beef!

  • Marco del Norte

    I completely agree with Scrumpy Jack!

    And I thought that the MLS and Garber were serious. He’s missing the boat on that one. This is ridiculous. Hopefully Montreal will go far in the Concacaf Champions League and put that in Garber’s face. How does Toronto get a 10 000 000 franchise fee and Montreal should pay 40 000 000 just a few years later? I almost hope that some desperate MLS teams fold next year to prove I wrong they went. They sure don’t do their homeworks, because they would know that Montreal has all the tools to succeed at the highest level. A big and knowledgeable fanbase, a brand new stadium, owners who have money. Garber, what’s your beef!