The Single Gal and Soccer

I have to admit that I didn’t go to one Earthquakes game this year.  I like soccer, I support San Jose teams, but I didn’t make it to a single game. We support the Sharks even after a year-long lockout, but the majority of San Joseans bypass what is the most popular sport in the world.

The problem is that Earthquakes games need atmosphere. The feeling I get when I walk into Spartan Stadium is that I am in some high school football field with dilapidated facilities and no character. The only solution is for San Jose to build a new soccer stadium.

Here is my proposal:

· The Arena Should be Small and Intimate
The new stadium should have 15-20,000 seats. Provide a place that’s lively and loud and people will come.
· Add Some Class
Add suites, bars and restaurants.  One thing I have seen that works is a restaurant that overlooks the action, so people can sit in their seats, have a club sandwich and a beer, and not miss any of the action. Imagine that on a warm summer day.
· Make it Kid-Friendly
This is the most important piece.  There should be several soccer fields attached to the stadium for youth soccer.  Have Saturday tournaments and practices here.  Teams have to find fields, so why not congregate at a soccer facility where they can be close to the Major League team?
· Make it accessible
The stadium should be downtown near the Shark Tank.  Sharks games are easy to get to by car, foot or train.  Spartan Stadium isn’t easy. 

Since baseball is a long shot, this is something so attainable for our city. I’d hate to see a popular sport and a great team leave town only because we can’t provide a nice enough home for them.

60 Comments

  1. Single Gal – You sound like a real, desparate piece of work.  Have you tried hanging a raw pork chop around your neck?

  2. Single Gal,

    This type of idea would work great at the fairgrounds (exept for public transit).  Plenty of room for both a stadium and nearby soccer fields. 

    This would work better then the doomed concert hall the county wants.

    It could be a partnership with the sharks; at the same time allowing the sharks to build their concert hall downtown (which makes more sense).

  3. What about wanting a soccer stadium makes me desperate? 

    Are you the kind of guy that likes to be rude to women hoping that will somehow turn them on?  Well, its not workin’.

  4. I am not sure how the stadium is for soccer but it is the best stadium for football. You are right on top of the field which is rare with today’s newer stadiums. Too bad not many go to the SJSU football games because it is a good time. I wish that they were supported more…. As for soccer, since it is the #1 sport in the world, you would think that we could get a nice stadium for it – and more support.

  5. I think more people would support the Earthquakes, and their desire for a stadium, if the team would commit to San Jose. Who wants to support an organization that keeps issuing “Build us a stadium or we’ll move” ultimatums? Face it, this is SOCCER…they don’t have that kind of leverage!

    Instead the Quakes should be working to make San Jose WANT to find public/private partnerships to build the kind of excellent stadium facility that Single Gal describes. No one’s going to support such an effort if the team constantly has one foot out the door.

  6. SJ Downtowner (#4)

    Mandarin is the #1 language in the world, but that doesn’t mean that we should use it here on this blog site. Soccer may be #1 in the world, but its fan base is primarily people who grew-up playing it almost exclusively. We have some of those people here, but with all due respect to them and the game of their passion, they do not possess the dollar power in this valley to get a stadium built (measurable by TV ratings and the gate). Building a soccer stadium here would be a colossal risk, which is why it will not be done (only the government can afford to be so fiscally reckless).

    Soccer is not ice hockey. The Sharks’ product, though foreign to this area, is a high-speed, action-packed exhibition of skill and teamwork—all of which made it a good bet to succeed with folks who grew-up loving American football. Soccer, on the other hand, is a snoozer. Absent excessive alcohol or moronic, maniacal nationalism, soccer is a 14.4k game that simply doesn’t resonate with those who live in a broadband world.

  7. I think most Quakes fans just want to know that their team is staying here. Frankly, it’s amazing that attendance grew again this year with the rumors of the team being moved and AEG’s constantly shifting “deadlines” for announcing the team’s fate. A lesser fanbase would have left in anger long ago.

    That said, the kind of stadium that you describe—intimate, close to downtown, good transit access, with youth fields attached—would not only be the dream of every Earthquakes fan but also would be the envy of every team in MLS, most of which play in stadiums that are somewhat isolated.

    When can I buy tickets?

  8. Single Gal,
    I definitely agree that we should build a soccer stadium downtown.  I actually think there is a pretty decent atmosphere at Spartan Stadium for soccer games, but a new stadium near transit would make the team more accessible and, more importantly, profitable.  Given the attendances the Earthquakes were getting over the final portion of the season there is certainly a strong base on which to build (the Quakes were averaging over 18,000 people per game over the last 5 games of the regular season, which is a little more than the Sharks averaged this season through their first 5 games).

  9. Catch the right game and the Quakes offer atmosphere to burn. But I agree with your comments—except the stadium should be a little larger-20 to 25K. The attendance was right around the 20K mark for several of the last games (excluding the Wednesday night game). A new stadium with the amenities you describe would make the Quakes one of the major attractions in the South Bay.

  10. To #2:

    Actually, the proposed stadium site at the county fairgrounds is accessible by VTA’s 26 bus along Curtner (which connects to light rail at Curtner) and the 66 or 68 bus lines along Monterey Highway.  The 66 and 68 tend to run late and stop in downtown San Jose.  (The 68 bus terminates right across the street from the Shark Tank, at Diridon station.).  If the main entrance to the stadium is pointed on Monterey then it would make it more accessible to public transit.

    If you are willing to walk 10 minutes thru a dark industrial area, Spartan Stadium is accessible via the 66 and 68 bus lines.  The stadium is also a three-block walk from the 25 bus running between East San Jose and Valley Medical Center (or De Anza College in Cupertino).  More details on VTA buses serving Spartan Stadium (and nearlby MUNI for SJ Giants games) are here:

    http://www.vtaridersunion.org/guides/transit2stadia.html

    VTA would have to commit to running light rail every 15 minutes on weekends and off-peak hours before I would consider the Great America site for a new Earthquakes pitch.  Currently light rail in that area only runs every 15 minutes during peak hours, and every half hour otherwise.

    (Note: the last Earthquakes game I went to was the Western final in October 2003 when they beat Kansas City (another team that could be moving as well) in OT to go to the MLS cup finals.)

    Sincerely,

    Eugene Bradley
    Founder, Santa Clara VTA Riders Union

  11. Nice ideas. I worry if the will exists to keep the Quakes in the South Bay. Some other sites around the Bay Area may be considered – if only to keep the team in Northern California: Bay Meadows, Oakland, Dan Francisco, UC Davis’s new football stadium (hint, hint)….

  12. Ok. Let’s just go for it all. I propose we give all you sports freaks everything you’ve always wanted. A new statdium for the Amazing A’s AND a new staduim for the earthquakes. Who cares how it gets paid for. More taxes? Gring them on! I’ll tackle them like a two bit linebacker!
    While we’re at it, and the strings to our collective purse are losened, why don’t we build a stadium for our new San Jose Football team, and another for our Basketball team? “If you build it, they will come”! Maybe we could really feel like a big city if we add another stadium for professional ping-pong or something.
    Seriosuly folks, aren’t there way too many problems with our city, like downtown and transportation to worry about before we just keep mindlessly expanding? Shouldn’t we make our city better before we make it bigger?
    Then again, maybe sports are the new opiate of the masses. As long as you can go watch someone kick a ball into a net, everything will be ok…

  13. “high-speed, action-packed exhibition of skill and teamwork—all of which made it a good bet to succeed with folks who grew-up loving American football.”

    Football and baseball are not exactly “action packed”. A game of football in a t.v. age takes 3+ hours to finish b/c of all the stoppages. Hockey actually resonates w/ ppl b/c it has the “action” similar to basketball and the violence of football.

    Oh, and I guess American Football is “high scoring” as well. I know that the high point value tricks ppl into thinking it’s high scoring, but 28-21 is essentially 4-3. (Take away the worthless extra points, make a safety = field goal at .5, and a 24-17 score becomes 3.5-2.5. Wow, such high scores!!)

  14. oncetegocalde: The good news is that people like finfan are from an older generation and will eventually phase themselves out.

    GO SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    WE’RE NOT GOING ANYWHERE, BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. Gotta say I don’t see how finfan finds soccer to be a snoozer compared to American football or for sure baseball.  Football lurches along, the action stopping every few seconds.  Baseball is our national pastime so it doesn’t matter how slow that is, it’s got its base in spite of inflated player salaries and that won’t change before soccer really catches on in this country. 

    The dollar power finfan speaks of also isn’t going to come from a fan base that grew up playing soccer (when you consider what that base mainly consists of in the Bay Area), not just yet anyway. 

    Even though the ‘quakes are already here in town, I think a new stadium for them downtown is way more of a longshot that a new one for the A’s, even with the territorial rights issue to resolve.

    Bottom line:  soccer isn’t considered big time.  Even hockey is bigger.  And the powers that be around here want a big time team like the A’s to give the false impression to the rest of the world that this is a big time town.  Good luck steering them in any other direction.

  16. The current property that is being purchased in San Jose for the “proposed San Jose A’s, will be reallocated for the QUAKES once all A’s opportunities dry up. The current A’s owners are just using us as a negotiating chip and will drop San Jose like a hot potato when they get what they want in Oakland

    Lastly, The San Jose Earthquakes have been in town since 1974, if some recent transplant has difficult swallowing that they (QUAKES) and I (FANS)aren’t leaving, then please move out of my town or let me help you swallow this soccer ball.

    WE BELIEVE
    GO SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES
    WE AIN’T LEAVING

  17. San Jose needs to keep the Quakes here. A new stadium would do for the Quakses as a new Arena did for the Sharks. Does anyone remember the Cow Palace? Spartan stadium is the Cow Palace in disguise.

  18. In response to# 5, if you followed what’s going on at all you would know that the team is not threatening to move at all but that the current owners want out to sell the team and once that’s accomplished (hopefully by a local investor group) a stadium and stadium site can be the next priority. In response to #6, I didn’t grow up playing soccer as you suggest, but take my Earthquakes away from here and I will be heartbroken. Tv ratings will be on the rise in 2007 when the networks compete for the rights to MLS. The league can then make money on tv and not have to pay for games. You see, Earthquake fans don’t get the luxury around here like some teams who have had and continue to have losing records but continue to have sports talk shows and morning radio hosts talk about the games of the day or some useless dribble. It’s a mindset that hopefully one day soccer will be talked about as any other sport around here, good or bad games, but just to be reported on in a fair and equal manner. Last but not least to single gal, I would hope for a stadium a little larger ( 25000-35000) with the ammenities she suggested with the charm of Spartan (pillared sides) and the crowd close to the action and larger pitch for international games.  Love my Quakes !!! Forever!!!!

  19. Single Guy # 1:  it’s easy to tell why you’re single.

    Single Gal # 3:  You go, girl!

    FinFan #6: first paragraph says it all—you fans need to recruit others to the game uou love.  As for me, it really is boring to watch a bunch of guys trot up and down, and be unable to get a small ball into a big space very often, with not much happening while they do it.  If QB’s missed their intended target team-mate when they passed as often as soccer players miss their intended target when they pas, they’d all be out of work.

    And almost every time a player gets touched in soccer he falls down and gives an academy award performance of Rick Barry.

    Ron in Davis #12—Bay Meadows is out as of yesterday.  You want ‘em in Davis, raise the money and sell season tickets.  But it’s definitely out if one takes public transit.

  20. Spartan Stadium is to the Quakes as the Cow Palace was to the Sharks. The Arena makes a huge difference in the enjoyment of the game. Soccer is here to stay and with the infastructure being built in htis country I wouldn’t bet against it.

  21. Here’s another idea:
    Let’s drop sports all together and build a massive cultural complex that includes a world class concert hall, opera house, expand The Tech Museum to encompass several city blocks, establish an art museum of international stature and similar facilities where people the world over would travel to exercise their minds and spirits.
    Perhaps then the rest of the world would consider San Jose as a city with it’s own identity instead of just another wannabe doing what every other big city does. (They got baseball? WE got baseball!)
    Wouldn’t it be refreshing to see San Jose take the lead for a change?

  22. Another Idea (#24)—let’s see, the estimated total costs of a soccer stadium would run about $65 million. Once you sell naming rights, factor in the private money, etc., the municipal contribution is likely to be little more than land, infrastructure, and bonding ability. I’m not sure what those things are worth but I’ll be generous and say $30 million, even though I’m sure that number is way too high.

    How far is that $30 million going to go in creating your plan to build “a world class concert hall, opera house, expand The Tech Museum to encompass several city blocks, establish an art museum of international stature”? Heck, how far is it going to go in creating any one of those items? $30 million isn’t even ten percent of what it would take to acquire the art for “an art museum of international stature.” Do you know what the Getty has paid for the art they’ve obtained in pursuit of that goal? Have you priced any Van Goghs lately?

    I like my goals with nets—two in the stadium and two on each of the youth fields, please.  It’s not a very big investment and it will have a very real benefit to the community, from kids and adults who play soccer to nearby merchants and restaurateurs. (Gotta love the economic multiplier effect…)

  23. #24- I won’t be holding my breath. Leadership is a far removed trait from this city.  In the same week that we spent still day dreaming about a vibrant downtown, a brand new sports arena for a yet to be named team/sport, and the good old days of creameries, our neighbor to the north opened a St Regis and hosted a royal banquet at its newly renovated De Young Museum.

  24. There have been a number of projects floating around: baseball stadium, soccer-specific stadium, a small concert venue etc.  The CPA, Civic Center are among other venues that aren’t up to date. 

    I would be interested to hear about the City’s plan to update our downtown entertainment venues.  Is there a plan or a priority list out there or is it all a secret?

  25. #29. There’s nothing wrong with thinking big. Cultural facilities can also attract revenue, fill restaurants, hotel rooms and airports. 
    I was happy to see 18,000 fans showing up toward the end of this past season and would like to see the team stay in the area. But would San Jose become an international destination because of it’s soccer stadium? 
    My point is that with creative leadership San Jose could be something more than just another city with a sports franchise.

  26. #22: don’t forget international friendlies (mainly Mexican clubs like Chivas and Club America), friendlies btw Earthquakes and foreign teams, World Cup Qualifiers and US Men’s and Women’s National Teams.

  27. CT(#28)

    “Hockey… is soccer on skates you dimwit”
    You know, you’re right! I checked out the Sharks in super slow-motion and, just before I dozed-off, I thought, ‘Oh my god, that looks like soccer!’ ZZZzzz

    “-if you can’t follow it because there isn’t enough violence for you thats too bad-”
    I’m not sure if it’s the lack of violence that bothers me or the fact that soccer players fake injuries at a rate bested only by government employees.

    “All we are saying is that we are as viable a market as any other soccer market in the US.”
    Money finds markets. Yet, after three decades here just south of venture capitalism’s favorite playground, the Earthquakes’ great investment potential goes unnoticed. Perhaps a milk carton campaign is in order.

    “…in places like Bogota, Colombia and Vicenza, Italia where the atmosphere at a REAL Football match…”
    If you’re trying to sell an idea, or for that matter anything except cocaine or murder for hire, I’d drop the Bogota reference.

    “I have come to love the Beautiful Game more than any other sport…”
    It takes more than love to get a stadium built. Your beautiful game needs a bigger dowry.

  28. 30. I have no problem with cultural facilites. I think it’s great that the city spent millions renovating the California Theater.

    Maybe this is the populist in me, but aren’t many more citizens interested and would attend a soccer game rather than the opera or an art museum?

    We can debate the merits of what is more “cultural” but I find sporting events to be a benefit to the community. I can’t tell you how many families I see in the stands at each game. It is truely a community event that is fun for the family.

    The city spent millions on the new Rep theater and the California. I love attending plays at the Rep and I used to go to the old Montgomery Theater. But, I see no problem investing slightly more money in a facility that a far greater number of people would use.

    As for being just another city with a sports team, there is no shame in being just another city. We will never be San Francisco with beautiful vistas and international tourism. However, we can be a great place to live with wonderful attractions for the citizens who live right here in the area.

    27. Absoultely right. International games, just like tonight’s Mexican match up, would come as well. Plus, a new stadium would be a better facility for a Silicon Valley Bowl if that game were to be revived.

  29. A brand new stadium used for 15+ Quakes games, 5+ Spartans games, SJSU graduation, and the occasional concert that is too large for Shoreline or the Arena would certainly be a benefit for the South Bay as a whole. The venue would be in use just about every other weekend a year.

    The only way a new stadium is viable is if SJSU is involved. For this area, a stadium strictly for soccer is not justified due to the small fan base, and I say that as a hardcore Quakes/MLS supporter. (This is the public administrator in me, overruling my best wishes for the Quakes.)

    A new stadium that was a public/private/university venture would be a great accomplishment. Just look at the new MLK library. That was the result of Mayor Hammer looking into the future and doing something never done before. Those professors who were yelling at the prospect of having to share the library sure seem very quiet right now.

    Of course, there will be naysayers.

    To Quakes fans who would be upset over a NCAA regulation 30,000 seat venue as being too large for soccer – Spartan is that large right now and very cozy; so is the similarly sized HDC in L.A. As for football lines on the field – beggars can’t be choosers – would you rather see the team in Houston?

    To SJSU. Spartan Shops would have to give up some control to the Quakes. Quite frankly, Spartan Stadium is one of the worst venues in America, (sightlines aside,) in Division IA. The recruits, coaching staff, fans, and alumni would love the new facility and it would help bring the program back into respectability. Why do you think Stanford is redesigning a new stadium? A small amount to help build a stadium would be a great investment for the profile of the school.

    As for the city, public financing would be a concern. But after the naming rights are sold, and a contribution for the new owners, the stadium would be far less than a new baseball stadium. The city spent a pretty petty on the Guadalupe River Walk and City Hall. Why not invest in a facility that would host 15,000 fans/citizens on average per event?

  30. Finfan #6:  Cute: Broadband world…ha ha…Hockey, with its passing and goals at both ends- with offsides and offensive and defensive specialists is soccer on skates you dimwit…except at a hockey match in the US you have a decent chance of getting into a fight….Drinking and fights and hockey are synonyms right? REALITY CHECK- REAL ATHLETES are playing soccer- if you can’t follow it because there isn’t enough violence for you thats too bad- It is full of precision and creativity and the guys don’t look like Jr heading out for his first time in the snow…give me a break- YOUR HEROES DON’T GET TO KEEP THEIR TEETH! HOW SOPHISTICATED IS THAT?

    There are boxing fans paying millions to see guys belt each other…that doesn’t make it a great sport or a great teacher for our kids.  Millions of kids play soccer and if the NASL had not been mismanaged into oblivion the 8 year lull that killed interest in pro soccer in the US wouldn’t have taken such a toll.  All we are saying is that we are as viable a market as any other soccer market in the US.  We averaged over 18K per game the last 4 Saturdays in Spartan- we could easily continue that!  Hockey is fine- just don’t build up your sport by putting down mine.

    I played American football in college- even coached at the High School level and assisted at the collegiate level as well…While on active duty with the Air Force I found myself in places like Bogota, Colombia and Vicenza, Italia where the atmosphere at a REAL Football match…soccer, futbol, whatever was better than a hockey game, NCAA National Championship game or an NBA or NFL playoff game all of which I have attended… I cannot describe it well enough to someone who has never experienced it…and the action is so much more enjoyable to follow FOR ME…I have come to love the Beautiful Game more than any other sport AND I can even play it every now and then with people my age…you can’t really say that about football or hockey.

  31. Like the Quakes? Good for you.  I too know what it is to be a sports fan. However, you will find it hard to convince the average san josean (who couldn’t care less about soccer) to support spending millions of tax dollars to build a new stadium unless it stands to bring some benefit to the public at large.

    This means that if a new arena is going to be built by the city of san jose, it better be the goose that lais a golden egg. Build the new arena at the SCC Fairgrounds- HA! That’ll make great use of the 15-30K people the Quakes fans seem to think the city will draw. The new arena needs to be strategically located. Why do you think the City Council just acquired that land over by the Pavillion? Cuz they know the new A’s stadium needs to be an economic boon to the city.

    I’m just curious where I’m going to get the money to go watch all these great teams play! GO SHARKS, QUAKES, and possibly A’s!!!

  32. finfan, I’ll give you a polite hint.

    Look around yourself and notice the changing demographics of the Bay Area, heck the changing demographics of USA.

    This ain’t your father’s Bay Area no more.

    GO SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    WE’RE GETTING OUR STADIUM AND ARE HERE TO STAY, BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  33. One thing is obivous to me.  Those who make the claim that the game of soccer is boring have not spent much time watching the Earthquakes. 

    I have attended a fair share of Sharks games, including some playoff games.  Great excitment, great atmosphere.  The same is true of Earthquake games. 

    Beyond all of that, attempting to compare one sport to another is somewhat of a problem.  I used to love baseball (I can still rattle off the 1964 St. Louis Cardinal starting lineup).  I still like American football (unless I am at the stadium…TV controls the pace of the game).  Soccer is easy to understand (certainly the fewest rules), and it is exciting.  Like ALL other sports, not every game has you on the edge of your seat.  Suggesting it is boring, then defending baseball’s excitment borders on insane in my opinion.

    I believe that many of the comments here are being made by people who are not paying attention to what the MLS is doing.  Virtually all of the current markets either have, or are building soccer specific stadiums.  Teams are not playing on same turf as the local football team (and if they are, they won’t be for long).  Chicago, Dallas, LA, Columbus, NY-NJ, Denver, Salt Lake City, Toronto (they don’t even have a team yet), and more to come.

    The need here is to either build a new one or rebuild the current one, with control of the facility NOT being San Jose State.  The idea of rebuilding Spartan Stadium has some merit.  A case can be made that no other venue in the Bay Area has had as many world class players on it’s turf as Spartan Stadium.  Pele, Maradona, George Best are just some of the players who have played there.

    My biggest concern is that this city doesn’t really have the leadership to do any of this.  We have already endured the Giants pipe dream (twice) and now it is the A’s.  Division 1A football is on death’s door.  I believe I remember hearing doom and gloom regarding the arena and The Sharks prior the construction of the building.  Hard to believe anyone ever thought that way.  My point is that this city needs to do what it actually can do, and stop the insanity of trying to be what it will never be.

  34. Lots of back and forth re whether soccer is exciting or boring.  No-one will convince the other side.  There is no right or wrong to the question.

    So, it ends up $$$.  If someone can make a buck off it, it will be a go.  If the fan base is too small, no matter how loyal or fanatical, it will be a bust. The end.

  35. JMO’Connor,

    Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.

    And if you had been paying any attention, the fanbase is far from small. By definition, that makes it far from “too small”.

    Click on those links posted by TimTom, or look at the attendance numbers which are splattered all over this blog.

  36. It is $$$.  That is the reason why it is important that the primary tenant of a soccer stadium (owners/management of the team) need total control of the venue.  I would agree, 100%, that the current situation would not be profitable if the incoming revenue is solely from the soccer team.  The right situation would have the management also promoting concerts and other sporting events (I think that is one of AEG’s issues).

    Keep in mind that for the first time EVER, Major League Soccer is not paying for time on TV.  The network is now paying for broadcasting rights, a significant developement.  Successful professional sports leagues in the US are dependent, in varying degrees, on TV revenue.  If not for the money paid to the league by TV networks, the NFL would be vastly different (we probably would not even know who TO is…..that wouldn’t be so bad actually).

    The point is that the MLS shows promise.  They have enough foresight to realize that the league doesn’t need 70,000 seat stadiums.  I personally see that as pragmatic.  TV revenue is starting to appear.  The game of soccer is really no longer something “foreign” to the American audience (some would disagree….I would suggest they pay more attention). 

    This can be done in this city.  If the Earthquakes go away, they won’t be back.  San Jose, arguably the soccer “capital” of the US at one time in history (Sports Illustrated, 1974) should be ashamed that this is even an issue.

  37. Nicholas:

    Read more carefully, Nicholas.  My statement was “IF the fan base is too small…it will be a bust”.

    I don’t know if it is too small or not, but they are looking to leave.  And no-one’s clammoring to put up enough money to build it so they will stay.

  38. Over this past Earthquakes season, I have discussed their situation with the person who sits next to me at the games.  From the beginning of the season, my opinion has been that the one logical investor is the Sharks organization.  The one downside this year is the possible uneasiness from the Sharks fans, knowing that the owners might be considering the deal during a time when the NHL was having their own problems.

    Regardless of the politics, the fairgrounds really present the best stadium solution.  The land is already owned by the county and it is not being used.  There is plenty of room for just about any kind of facility.  The biggest drawback is the lack of viable public transit (although I am not sure that it matters all that much).  If needed, there is no reason why a bus bridge could not be considered between a fairgrounds stadium and the Tamien light rail and Caltrain station.

    I am assuming it is appropriate to place links in our messages.  Here is one to a publication about football stadiums, regarding the MLS.  Things are on the move in the US:  http://www.footballstadiumdigest.com/features/soccer_surge.htm

  39. Antonio (#32) I don’t know about that. It seems to me that you get some pretty long lines outside Davies Symphony Hall or the SF Opera House. The NY Philharmonic seems to be able to put people into seats. When the traveling Smithsonian Exhibit came to SJ a few years ago it was the hottest ticket in town and the Celebrity Speakers Forum at Flint Center sells out every year. (The’ve added an extra night and it’s also sold out!)
    As far as being “just another city” wouldn’t it be better to be known as “a very special city”?

  40. Please help spread the word about saving the Earthquakes and getting our new stadium:

    Contact officials from San Jose and the City of Santa Clara: http://www.SoccerSiliconValley.com and click on “Send a Message.”

    Set aside the evening of Tuesday, December 6 to attend a San Jose City Council meeting with a thousand or so of your closest
    friends: your fellow Earthquakes fans and SSV members. The City Council
    will be holding their regularly scheduled meeting that night and we’re
    going to be there, every one of us wearing Quakes blue.

    Tuesday, December 6
    7:00 PM
    San Jose City Hall
    200 East Santa Clara Street
    San Jose, CA 95113
    Map: <http://tinyurl.com/ck8hx&gt;;

    We are down to the wire. Let’s get this done.

    Yours in soccer,
    Colin McCarthy and the Founding Members of SSV:
    Don Gagliardi
    Jay Hipps
    Tony Huston
    John Jussen
    Carol Vartuli Marin
    Mike Turco

  41. No. 

    What I said was that if you’re not paying to play, don’t belong to an organization that is paying to play, or don’t belong to a “We shall overcome…” minority you will most likely be “disenfranchised” and the disenfranchisers will feel good about themselves.

    You must not be from around these parts.

  42. #44 For your 2 minutes, be sure to present a study that shows how large percentages of Quake fans are illegal immigrants, lobbyists, transgender, office furniture salesmen, medical marijuana types, union members, etc. 

    You know, constituents that are dear to the council’s heart that would be disenfranchised should the Quakes leave.

    But instead, if Tuesday night consists of nothing but gringos in blue shirts + 2 minutes – it’ll be an evening of red cards and own goals for your side.

    Good luck.

  43. Novice, this is not the time for your bizzare cynicism. It’s time to make noise at the city council and show the outgoing and incoming mayor and the city council that there are many, many of us interested in getting this to closure.

    SVS&E will sign the agreement to buy the team, once they get some sort of assurance from the politicians that they’ll help with a new stadium. Be clear: NO PUBLIC FUNDS OF ANY SORT ARE BEING OR WILL EVER BE REQUESTED FOR THIS EFFORT!

    GO SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  44. I have been “from around these parts” for about 38 years.  Too many times, this town has been a step behind.  I have good friends who lobbied heavily against the arena and Sharks.  Fortunately, my friends lost that battle.

  45. Over the past few years the Earthquakes have had to get by on the smallest MLS budget imaginable.  Image the energy and attendance levels if they operated like the rest of the properly supported MLS teams!
    AEG has treated them like the poor step child and only thrown enough bread crumbs for them to barely survive.  Losing $20M over 3 years – that can’t be right.  The Quakes payroll is the smallest of the MLS teams, they have very little overhead, no significant marketing budget.  They thing that has hurt them the most is they can’t sign a long term stadium deal. The Earthquakes fans need to get the message to the City government that this team needs to stay here.  These guys are the best role models for the youth of this city.  There are no steriod scandels, no outrageously paid super stars—just guys who want to play soccer for one of the best teams in the MLS.

  46. Unfortunately for Quakes fans, the team may merely be a bargaining chip for it’s owners, AEG.  Lots of rumors floating around right now regarding what AEG really wants in any deal (rumors posted on soccer messageboards).  Most of the speculation is centered around the promotion of entertainment events in a possible new facility.  There is nothing new about a company wanting someone else to build a facility for them.  Who knows how much of it is factual or just idle speculation?  The cynic in me would not be surprised by much of anything. 

    There is talk that the Sharks ownership and AEG are competitors in the entertainment business and this is a big issue.  Could it be that AEG would like to unload the team, yet still have control of a facility?  Just a rumor, but it makes some sense.  If that is the case, it makes the entire issue of the team staying here a non-starter, IMHO.  Of one thing I am positive.  The negotiating is not about soccer.

  47. Walther,

    On their blog, I had communicated with SSV in the past about this “concert revenue control” issue.

    http://blog.soccersiliconvalley.com/archives/2005/10/soccer_night_in.html#comments

    As per SSV:

    “Logically, I think it’s likely that whoever is paying for a new stadium will want to be get more use out of it (and therefore, more money) than the 20 or so games per year the Quakes would play there. Concerts may be a part of that; I don’t really know.”

    So, I don’t honestly know whether any future control to AEG for concert revenue is a holdup in the sale process.

  48. Finfan:
    I attacked you – you attacked me….okay, lets try a different tack:

    You say the investment potential hasn’t been noticed…well, it has, (finally, by the same people!) and the answer is in getting a facility just like it was for the Sharks.
    BUT, that is a recent development so your point was well taken.

    The Bogota reference? If you haven’t been there I shouldn’t expect you to know anything about it except what little you hear through the US media.  More US people died last month in Detroit than in Iraq so its all in the perspective and what the media chooses to cover.  Over 6 million people live in Bogota and the culture and market there ACTUALLY is about a lot more than drugs (which are mainly consumed in America BTW)…you see the Colombians didn’t create THE PROBLEM with illicit drugs…the market is HERE! But, since you pointed it out I think marketing wise it would be intelligent to drop it as well…no need muddying the waters!

    And finally: We know you don’t like soccer…actually I like hockey and totally understand its appeal.  I am sure that I will attend Sharks matches and I bet you are a great fan and have a lot of fun before, during, and after the games- eventually we may find ourselves on the same side even if you don’t “get” soccer.  A lot of people do and a lot more will in the future- Its just that kind of game….by the way do you play hockey?  I get beat up enough playing soccer and I’m way too old to even think about hockey, so if you do…hats off! 

    GO EARTHQUAKES!!!! WE ARE ALMOST THERE!!!  SAN JOSE!!!!SAN JOSE!!!!SAN JOSE!!!!

  49. Suggestion:  Just take Single Guy out of the blog- he’s just making personal attacks…it makes other references to him difficult to place in context, but he missed the point of Single Girl’s blog…STAY IN SAN JOSE QUAKES!

  50. Hey did anyone happen to catch the Swiss and Turkish players running around kicking each other after their world cup qualifier a week or 2 ago?

    Anyone know where I can pick up a ‘Best of’ highlight reel featuring soccer players chasing and kicking each other like girls in a school yard?

  51. Stay here SAN JOSE EARTHQUAKES!!!!!!!!

    Merry Christmas, everyone. And it’s down to the wire. San Jose Earthquakes are staying in town. City counil will vote on December 13 to provide the help needed to keep them in town.