The city of Atlanta has some greats sports teams, the Atlanta Falcons, Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Hawks. The city has football, baseball, and basketball covered. While Atlanta once had a fourth professional team to add to the list, hockey, there are now only three due to the Atlanta Thrashers moving north to Winnipeg, Canada. But heads up to our fellow Atlanta dwellers, we will soon have a fourth professional team again to add to our list: Major League Soccer is on its way.
A Work in Progress
In May of 2012, Home Depot co-founder and Atlanta Falcons team owner had a meeting with his season ticket holders presenting his case for a brand new football stadium. The new stadium could have any number of advantages including a Super Bowl in Atlanta. But Arthur Blank had another thought in mind: Major League Soccer.
His investment group, AMB, submitted a bid for an MLS franchise in 2008, but the plans fell through as Atlanta didn’t have a proper stadium or the means to get one built for an MLS team. In 2013, the city and the Atlanta Falcons agreed upon building a new stadium.
A New Team for Atlanta
Blank announced in April of this year that the expansion franchise of the MLS would indeed be coming to Atlanta. The team will begin play in 2017 after the new stadium has been built. They will share play time in the shiny new, retractable roof stadium with the Atlanta Falcons.
The Atlanta MLS team does not yet have a name. Blank claims he will let the fans help decide. But they do have colors already picked out. Red and black with a little gold thrown in the mix will grace the uniforms of the Atlanta MLS team, to coincide with the red and black of the Falcons uniforms. The new Falcons stadium will be converted from 70,000 seats to 29,000 for an MLS games.
Major League Soccer: 2017
Executives are already keeping busy, and the team’s fan base is already on its way: 14,000 season seats have already been pledged for purchase. Darren Eales, formerly of the Tottenham Hotspur Football Club has been named Club President, and Rob Geoffroy, formerly of the Atlanta Falcons, has been appointed Chief Financial Officer of MLS Atlanta.
If fans check out MLSAtlanta2017.com, there are shirts, hats and scarves already available for purchase! Apparently 2017 can’t come quickly enough!
Arthur Blank is excited for his newest endeavor as owner of Major League Soccer’s 22nd team. “We are very excited to bring a Major League Soccer team to Atlanta,” Blank said. “We are going to build a first-class organization on and off the field that will be a source of pride for the entire community, and we believe our downtown stadium will become a destination for soccer fans throughout the Southeast for many years to come.”