Weekly Brief - 2007-10-05

October 5, 2007
The Weely Brief,  highlighting recent soccer industry stories from around the World is provided to San Francisco Seals Fans courtesy of  FMMInternational See below for more information regarding FMMInternational.
Current and past issues of the Weekly Brief can be found in our News/Information section under the "Weekly Brief Archives - 2007".
* Americas *
Earthquake Introduce New General Manager
The new San Jose Earthquake franchise, which will rejoin MLS next season, unveiled a redesigned uniform and logo, and announced that former player and assistant coach John Doyle would be the GM. Michael Crowley, who is president of the Oakland A’s as well as the Earthquake, indicated that Doyle’s deep passion for soccer and ties to the local community stood out. Source: San Jose Mercury News
Seattle Sounders Reportedly MLS Bound
Although MLS will only concede that it plans to award 2 more franchises by the 1st quarter of 2008, the Herald News of New Jersey and Sports Illustrated both reported that the Seattle Sounders, who will leave the USL as champions, will be one of them. The team, which will be the first located in the Northwest, will reportedly join the league for the 2009 season and play at Qwest Field. Philadelphia, St. Louis, and, to a lesser extent, Portland are reported to be in the running for the final allocation. Sources: the Herald News of New Jersey; Sports Illustrated

Lalas Assesses Hispanic Fans
Although LA Galaxy GM Alexi Lalas expressed excitement about the possibility of courting second and third generation Hispanic soccer fans, who are open to supporting different teams than their parents because they “look at themselves as Americans,” he warned that they are soccer savvy. "You could have a big-name player come over (from a Latin American country), but if the player is poor or the team is poor, the Hispanic fans quickly turn off." Source: HispanicBusiness.com

GolTV Hires Prominent Consultant
Kevan Pipe, who was head of the Canadian Soccer Association for 21 years, and continues to represent CONCACAF and FIFA internationally, has been hired by Insight Sport’s GolTV as a consultant. Pipe will assist with the strategic business development in the areas of events, sales, marketing and programming. Source: Sports Features Communications

Makita Sponsors Cup Competition
Makita, who sponsors tools for MLS, will hold a cup competition for contractors in Dallas from October 6-11. The aim of the Copa Makita is to reach out to Hispanic contractors, who account for 25% of that workforce, and their families, who can attend the Fiesta Makita, which will feature food, music, merchandise, and games. Sponsors include Monster Energy Drink, Chevy, Western Union, and Dr. Pepper. Source: PR Newswire

Dynamo Form Elite Youth Academy
The Houston Dynamo, in conjunction with the McAllen Youth Soccer Association, announced the formation of the Dynamo South Texas Academy, consisting of U-17 and U-15 teams. "The South Texas region is an absolute hot bed of talent for soccer," said Dynamo Director of Youth Development James Clarkson. "We've established this academy not only to further the awareness of soccer in the South Texas region, but also to identify talent that is looking for the future opportunity to play professionally with the Houston Dynamo or in Major League Soccer." Source: Our Sports Central

New Sponsor Deals
Banco Santander of Spain has become the title sponsor of the Copa Libertadores, CONMEBOL’s premier club competition. They replace Toyota. Separately, The Columbus Crew this week announced the signing of ICI Paints brand Glidden as the clubs ‘Presenting Sponsor’. Glidden branding will feature on the team jerseys as part of the deal: Sources: Yahoo Finance & MLS.net

More Fallout At Corinthians
Brazilian club Corinthians are at the centre of controversy once again centering around former presidents use of the word ‘robbed’ in relation to the clubs 2005 title win. Brazil’s top sports tribunal is looking into the context of the comment which was made during a telephone conversation recorded by federal police. Source: The Guardian
* Europe *
New Sponsorship Deals
Chelsea has signed a 3 year deal with Gatorade that will see PepsiCo International brand become their official sports drink. Meanwhile Möbel Kraft, a furnishings vendor, has penned a deal that sees them become a ‘co-sponsor’ of Bundesliga side Hertha BSC. Source: Sportfive.com & Chelseafc.com

Usmanov To Ditch Dein?
While Arsenal managing director Keith Edelman earlier declared himself ‘relaxed’ about businessman Alisher Usmanov increased stake in the club, media reports suggest the Russian billionaire has held talks with the Arsenal board that have resulted in David Dein, former vice-chairman and ‘persona non grata’ effectively being sidelined. Meanwhile, following a meeting with the Arsenal board, Stan Kroenke has been urged by the club to join the ‘lockdown’ and agree not to sell his shares in the club. Source: Various
Battle For Control Of Championship Team
Local press are reporting that West Bromwich Albion’s second largest shareholder Geoff Hale has bettered Chairman Jeremy Peace’s offer to club shareholders. Peace is trying to take full control of the club but Hale believes his intention is to sell the club on at a massive profit and hopes his move will block this. Source: Express & Star

Chelsea Tie Up With NFL
Chelsea have agreed a partnership with NFL ahead of the Dolphins v Giants game at Wembley later this month. John Terry and Didier Drogba have been appointed honorary captains of the Giants as part of the partnership and New York team will base at Chelsea’s training centre as part of the arrangement. Source: Chelsefc.com
Roman Clubs Face Action
AS Roma and Lazio could face fines of $680,400 in a false accounting case according to the Italian media. Franco Sensi, the President of AS Roma and Sergio Cragnotti, the former Lazio president are currently standing trial in relation to the case. Source: The Guardian
EPL Team Announce Stadium Development Plans
EPL side Fulham FC plan to add 4,000 seats to their Craven Cottage stadium. The team has outlined the plans to the local authority which is now consulting with local residents. Fulham hope the plans will secure their long term future at Craven Cottage, which has one of the smallest capacities in the EPL at little over 22,000. Source: The Guardian

Luton Town Continuing Losses
League One strugglers Luton Town are losing $6m per year according to their Chairman David Pinkney. The blame is laid at the door of unsustainably high (football) operating costs inherited from the previous ownership and Pinkney concedes the situation is unlikely to stabilize until current player contracts have expired. This summer the team announced plans to build a new 22,000 seat stadium. Source: Bedford Today

* The Weekly Brief is published every Friday and delivered free via e-mail to registered users.
* FMMInternational is a London-based soccer consultancy with offices in New York and Beijing. For more information about our business, click here
* Interested in using the Weekly Brief for Press/Media Releases, then please contact us via info@fmminternational
* The information contained herein is believed to be correct, but should not be relied upon as such. All financial figures should be seen as indicative only as they may have been converted from another currency.