- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On February 18, 2011
- 7 Comments
- Las Vegas, MLS Expansion
Oh here we go again. Another city wanting Major League Soccer. I guess this is what happens when the league is growing rapidly and people around the country are finally taking note. Today we hear of another candidate city, though this one is one that has popped up before (some folks tried to buy the Crew and bring them here).
Las Vegas and MLS, a match that could only get together at one of those swanky Vegas hotels. The Major of Las Vegas has been trying to lure a professional team to his city for a while now and has finally turned his attention towards MLS.
The Las Vegas Sun is reporting that Mayor Oscar Goodman wants a MLS club in his city because he believes Vegas has the perfect demographics for one.
“When I’m not the mayor anymore, I may very well explore Major League Soccer because I believe we have the ideal demographic here, socioeconomically, to have a very successful Major League Soccer team,” the mayor said today during his weekly news conference.
Goodman cited Las Vegas’ large Hispanic population and the sport’s growing popularity among youth as reasons soccer could succeed in Southern Nevada.
“(Soccer) is becoming a very important sport so I think that will be a natural here,” he said. “I think you can make it into a great real estate play if you took the time to put the right groups together.”
Obviously Vegas is a long shot right now for an expansion team, with New York still being the leading candidate. But who is to say that down the road in six or eight years, they couldn’t be a viable candidate if the right facility, owner and fan support show up?
Now a lot of folks will ask what is MLS’s stance on betting in Vegas. Honestly, that is an excellent question. I’d imagine they have a similar stance that other professional leagues around the country have on betting. As long as players, coaches, etc., aren’t betting on their teams and the league itself while a club is housed there then they’d probably be down with the whole Vegas plan.
It’s a risky move to go to a town like Vegas. The cons definitely weight heavy against the pros. The desert heat, no owner, no facilities worth using right away, and then the whole betting thing. On the flip side the town does have plenty of people coming and going that could spend money on a game while in town and there is little to no competition in terms of professional sports in Vegas. I know there are some minor league teams there but folks do enjoy having a top flight team in their city.
Still saying all that, I’d be down to a trip to Vegas each year.