“Third time’s a charm?” doesn’t really fit the new women’s soccer league announced today. The League with No Name is too drastically different from the overly ambitious WUSA and its scaled-down successor, WPS.
This league revs up the cost containment of WPS, particularly the latter years. But it’s also a unique venture of three national federations, eight ownership groups and, apparently, Unnamed Sponsor Who Is Making The MLS-Affiliated Teams Use Non-MLS Names. (See Stumptown Footy’s deduction and D.C. United Women’s colorful statement.)
So don’t accuse this new league of trying the same thing and expecting different results. Whether it works or not, it’s a unique approach.
A few statements and news bits from around the new league:
– Portland: This MLSSoccer.com piece hails the Timbers involvement and other MLS ties with the new league, though it curiously omits D.C. United. (Granted, D.C. United’s involvement seems significantly smaller than the Timbers’ commitment, but they’re not totally out of the game.)
Timbers owner Merritt Paulson has a statement with a link for season-ticket sales.
And Tina Ellertson (who has obtained her coaching “A” license) is excited.
– Kansas City: Welcome to FC Kansas City, which has made its appearance known through the Missouri Comets (MISL) site. If you thought the Sporting KC ownership group skewed young, meet Brian Budzinski.
– Western New York: No statement yet on the Flash site, though they mentioned the announcement on Twitter.
– Chicago: A little more activity on Twitter; no full statement on the Red Stars site.
– Boston: Breakers managing partner Mike Stoller was on the conference call, and the site has a statement with stadium and ticket info.
– D.C.: See above. The team will remain at the Maryland SoccerPlex.
– New Jersey: Hello? Sky Blue?
Outside the league, there’s a bit of bitterness in Los Angeles.
There’s a more conciliatory tone from the USL. W-League senior director Amanda Duffy passed along the following statement:
USL and the W-League are supportive of U.S. Soccer and the new women’s professional league announced earlier today, consistent with how we’ve supported the previous women’s professional leagues of WUSA and WPS.
We’re pleased with the foundation we’ve established through the W-League in the United States and Canada as leaders in women’s soccer and continue to be focused on the quality growth of the league and its teams. Collectively we made substantial strides in 2012 and with several exciting discussions we’ve been having over the past 6-12 months we are pleased with our overall positive direction as we enter our 19th season of operation. We look forward to sharing more over the next 15-30 days.
Not enough? Read U.S. Soccer’s quote sheet.