Thursday, December 15, 2005

Houston gets the 'Quakes?

Today is the MLS deadline for a decision on the location of the Earthquakes for the 2006 season. Since the talks on a new soccer stadium have collapsed in San Jose, it is looking very much like Texas is about to have an intra-state rivalry.

A Houston TV station reported that the city's mayor and sports authority have set a news conference for Friday with soccer being the most likely topic. Still, a spokesman for 'Quakes owner AEG says no final decision has been made.

There has been talk of a possible move to near by Santa Clara, but the mayor said on Wednesday, "We haven't heard anything from the involved parties'' in the past three days.

It looks like Houston is about to get the club. If they do move, I hope the Earthquake name stays in San Jose. Perhaps the Soccer Silicon Valley group could still work on getting a stadium deal. If they have more then 2 weeks to figure it all out, it might just happen. Then the MLS could place a future 'expansion' team back in the area.

I'm sure this move will be meet with some anger and sadness as San Jose was home to the first ever MLS match on April 6, 1996. San Jose won that outing 1-0 against DC United. Eric Wynalda got the first MLS goal in the 88th minute for the San Jose Clash.

However, this move opens up the fourth largest city in the US to the MLS. Let's hope, for the sake of pro-soccer in the US, that they can make something of it in their new home.

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