Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Kansas City owners willing to spend to improve

While most of the talk concerning the Kansas City Wizards has focused on their lack of all things related to a stadium (still no home for this season and no deal for a future soccer stadium), their new owners, OnGoal, have been working and spending to improve the club in other ways.

Yes, they put $800,000 into the failed campaign to build 24 youth soccer stadiums, but they have also invested $2 million into a new training facility which includes a locker room and practice fields. They have also doubled their number of employees from 19 to 38 with some of those new hirers being support staff for players.

“With OnGoal on board, I think we’ve got a great group that’s prepared to spend the money to do more with what we have here,” said Nick Garcia, who will be in his eighth season as a Wizards defender. “I think they’re for real and want to give us all the resources to succeed.

This still does not get them into a stadium, but it does show that OnGoal is committed to trying to improve the team. Hopefully this will help change the moral around the club and maybe make them a bit of a threat during the 2007 season.

Talking about this season, the club says they are very close to finalizing a home for the next two seasons. The temporary home will hold 6,500-8,000 fans. They also hope to announce more on a permanent home in the next six weeks.

OnGoal seems willing to put millions into the club to build it up and they should be saluted for doing so. However, they have only been involved with the club for five months. The real test of their devotion to the club will be if they are willing to keep doing the things needed to improve over the next five seasons. It is easy to get caught up in the hype and excitement of a marriage, but much harder to make it work.

That said, OnGoal is saying and, more importantly, doing just about everything they could be doing to make one think this marriage will work.

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