Wednesday Roundup: Providence Park expansion design unveiled

Allison Lee April 26, 2017 56

Also in today’s roundup, the Dash release 2017 alternate kit design and the U.S. U-17 WNT continue unbeaten streak in Europe.

(image by Brooklyn Digital Foundry, courtesy of Portland Thorns FC)

A rendering of the proposed expansion design for Providence Park (image by Brooklyn Digital Foundry, courtesy of Portland Thorns FC)

Proposed Providence Park expansion designs revealed

The Portland Timbers and Thorns FC organization unveiled a proposed plan to add 4,000 new seats to Providence Park in a $50 million-plus expansion. The project would be privately funded, costing the city and taxpayers nothing.

The proposed plan, created by Portland-based architecture firm Allied Works, features a 93-foot-high covered structure on the east side of the stadium that would include three new levels of reserved and group seating sections and a pedestrian-friendly colonnade street level along SW 18th Avenue. The vertical design of the east side was inspired by Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London and the La Bombonera stadium in Buenos Aires and is described as being “modern, yet historically influenced.”

Originally built in 1926, Providence Park has previously housed football games, dog races, concerts and other sporting events. It’s now primarily used as the home stadium for the Timbers and Thorns, but the current 21,144 seating capacity is not large enough to accommodate the increasing demand for Timbers tickets.

“Providence Park is one of the most special stadiums in sports,” Mike Golub, president of business for the Timbers and Thorns FC, said in a statement released by the Timbers. “With our proposed expansion, we will enhance the incomparable fan experience and intimacy and provide the opportunity for some of the more than 13,000 members of the waiting list to become season ticket holders.”

The Timbers/Thorns organization is still working with city and neighborhood associations on the specifics of the project, but if approved, the expansion project would take place over the course of two MLS offseasons. Construction would begin at the conclusion of either the 2017 or 2018 MLS season and be completed before the beginning of the 2019 or 2020 season.

Houston Dash release 2017 alternate kit

4/20/17 Media Day

Kealia Ohai sports the Houston Dash’s 2017 alternate kit. (photo courtesy Houston Dash)

The Houston Dash released their 2017 alternate kit on Wednesday. The Nike kit features the team’s iconic Space City Blue in both the jersey and shorts, with white sleeves and sides on the jersey and white socks. The jersey uses the same BBVA Compass and BHP Billiton logos on the front and back of the jersey, same as with the orange home kits.

{NWSL: Run of Play: You want me to play where? | Gibbons relished underdog role}

Houston will debut the new kit this weekend in their away match against the Washington Spirit. The kit was designed to be worn on the road and to be a light contrast to the darker home kits worn by many teams in the NWSL. The Dash will wear the kit at least four times this season, and it will be available to purchase at Houston-area retailers.

If the kit looks familiar, it should. Sky Blue FC wore the same kit with blue socks back in 2014.

U.S. U-17 WNT continue unbeaten streak

The U.S. U-17 women’s national team traveled to Europe to participate in the 2nd Tornea Femminile Della Nazion, the first competition of its new cycle. The tournament, which is played in 15 different venues in Italy and Slovenia, has featured boys’ competition for the past 14 years, but this is only the second year it has included women’s teams.

The U.S. is in Group B along with Slovenia, England and Mexico, and they opened tournament play on Tuesday against the host nation. In a game consisting of 35-minute halves, the U.S. drew Slovenia, 1-1.

The match remained scoreless until just four minutes into the second half, when Slovenia’s Marusa Cesnik headed in a corner kick. With approximately 12 minutes to spare, the U.S. leveled the score after Lia Godfrey was fouled inside the box, resulting in an American penalty kick. Jordan Caniff converted the penalty for her third goal in 11 U-17 caps.

On Wednesday the U.S. was back in action, defeating Mexico, 4-0, in Italy. Maya Doms scored a brace, while Kate Wiesner converted a penalty and Godfrey added a single to the goal total.

The U.S. will close out group play against England on Friday, April 28. Once group play is concluded, placement matches will be held on Saturday, April 29. The two group winners will compete for the championships, the two second-place finishers will compete for third, the two third-place finishers will compete for fifth, and the two fourth-place finishers will compete for seventh.

  • Movement

    Portland still has the best atmosphere in NWSL.
    Orlando needs to step it up a notch. Houston needs more attendance.

    And Kealia Ohai was meant to wear Carolina blue on the soccer field.

    • Silver Frost

      I guess, but she would look nicer if the Dash management had that new kit pressed with an iron. Not professional.

    • OitNJ

      I think every other team besides Orlando need to step it up a notch. I get the comparison, but really, it’s the other teams that need to up their attendance and atmosphere.

  • Katie Curtiss

    That alternative kit looks like a Sky Blue FC jersey

    • Movement

      Sky Blue tends to wear Night Blue instead.

      • disqus_hj8dHnhlYK
        • Nike’s Best Effort

          Holy hand-me-down Batman!

          • Steglitz49

            It sounds like the first time John Terry helped Chelsea Ladies out. Briefly, he saw them coming from practice and wondered why they were wearing such washed out tracksuits. They explained that they got the boys hand-me-downs. Terry was annoyed at this. He marched them off to the Chelsea shop were he proceeded to buy them each a new tracksuit. This was before Terry rescued them from being closed down.

            Two years ago Chelsea won the first ever women’s FA Cup final at Wembley and last year Emma Hayes was given an award by the Queen for her services to soccer, which the queen, though 90, herself handed to Emma.

    • guest

      as the article states
      “If the kit looks familiar, it should. Sky Blue FC wore the same kit with blue socks back in 2014.”

  • Lorehead

    As a business investment, this seems like a no-brainer. It does commit them to staying on the same site, however, not building a new stadium somewhere else in town. It is a really great location.

    • Movement

      They’re taking the iPhone approach.
      Don’t re-brand as a different brand or model.
      Instead, just take what you have, and make it bigger & better.

      Apple now has the biggest company ….

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_public_corporations_by_market_capitalization

    • guest

      $50M plus private investment is a not insignificant. Agree that with the strong record of sold out Timbers matches, very well attended Thorns matches and large waiting list for Timbers season tickets – and the great in city location, that Portland should clearly have no problem filling the additional 4000 seats.
      However with only 4000 new seats positive ROI on $50M will take a while.

      • Terry Lash

        Agree. It’s a lot of money for only 4,000 seats. are there other improvements that are included in the expansion?

        • mockmook

          I’d put it at about $5M per year (my SWAG) in additional revenue when you add in Timbers tickets sold, other events, concessions, and additional signage and adverts sold.

      • Steglitz49

        Verily. Something does not add up.

        • ARED

          Sponsors…..It’s all about the sponsors these days.

          Coincidentally, that is one of NWSL’s biggest hurdles…

          • Steglitz49

            It is the big hurdle of WoSo everywhere. Why do you think that modern WoSo is being dominated by the ladies teams of men’s clubs willing to spend on the lasses? (Lyon is not even among the 20 richest soccer clubs.)

    • Not a Steg Troll

      That raised wall of fans is going to look wicked on TV for sold out Thorns games. It should prove even more intimidating to visiting teams.

      • Steglitz49

        Like the yellow wall at Dortmund and the Kop end at Anfield. At Arsenal’s old ground at Highbury, it was the big clock that dominated.

      • Steglitz49

        Pardon my ignorance but what is a Steg Troll?

        A lot of inadequates troll S49 but one must not mock the afflicted.

  • AlexH

    I hope they add standing room. Stands improve the atmosphere of a soccer match 100%

  • xolo

    how to watch xolos femenil on livestream? https://twitter.com/xolos_en/status/857340027650531328

  • Ashley C

    The league needs some more exciting kits. Everything is pretty bland.

  • Bruce

    Draw for the inaugural tournament to kickoff Mexico’s new women’s league (Liga MX Feminil) was made today. No word on whether any of the games will be broadcast.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/4c559333b4d87e0cae7e0fb92ea2c8b74a552866910cf2f66e12ed853d01f461.png

    • Bruce

      Let that sink in for a second. By aligning women’s teams with Liga MX clubs, Mexico already has a development league larger than the NWSL.

      • mockmook

        They certainly need it more than the USA. Think about that 😉

        • Bruce

          Give Mexico the equivalent of one college generation in a well run program and we’ll be losing that smirk. The core talent is there.

          • mockmook

            I think if is better for the USA if Mexico becomes one of the top teams in the world.

          • Movement

            Yeah. Now that at least 3 teams from CONCACAF will make EVERY single World Cup in the future, instead of at least 2 teams, then there’s no risk if Mexico does eventually become a top team in the world.

          • Steglitz49

            There is a risk. If Sweden with a population of 10m can turf the USWNT out, the risk ought to be even greater with Mexico’s 130m not least with all the lasses studying at US universities.

          • ARED

            I agree, but want to remind that in the 2011 World Cup the USA only qualified as the final team (b/c they lost to Mexico actually). So they could have a problem again with another “underdog” team -if USA, Canada, and Mexico are all top teams, they could still lose and end up in a playoff, or out completely. But you are correct that they will have a very favorable path to each WC, whether Mexico rises or not….

          • Steglitz49

            That game against Italy in 2010 was the start of Alex Morgan’s career though her coming-out party was the WC-11 final. Maybe it was because Japan made off with the silverware that Alex got so much out of that game.

          • ARED

            I’m not sure what you mean, how Morgan got so much out of that game b/c she lost?

            But I wonder what might have happened if she had started the match….Or Sauerbrunn….

          • Steglitz49

            The WC-11 final is memorable for a number of events, not least the meltdown in the pro and how the 20-years old Saki Kumagai coped with Hope’s sportsmanship.

            But. The PR snow machine and boys from Madison Ave had to spin a tale for the American people and Alex Morgan was the obvious clay to work with.

            The final was in some ways Aya Miyama’s because she scored the 1-1 equaliser, hit the corner from off which Sawa equalised, netted her critical penalty for 1-0, and somewhere along the line picked up a yellow card. Yet, we remember Alex. PR is worth its weight in used sportsbras.

          • ARED

            Right, well for me it was about Japan’s incredible team led by Sawa’s heart and Miyama’s skill, and it should have been about Holiday, Morgan, Rapinoe, Heath, and Sauerbrunn rising to the top to win the USA’s first World Cup since 1999, but they had to wait 4 more years to get their chance to do that.

            Morgan became a star because of how she played, not because she lost. It would have only been bigger if they had won.

          • Steglitz49

            Azusa Iwashimizu did the needful. Alex tumbled, Iwa walked but the thin blue line held.

            Alex induced the first red card in a WoSo WC final. The same ref did not award one in the OG-12 final. Yet Alex most famous goal is a header and the one against Italy was scored with her weaker right paw.

            WoSo needed that Japanese victory and Japan needed it even more. WoSo’s equivalent to WC-54.

          • ARED

            Right. So if Morgan scored 2 and assisted one in a 3-1 win, I’m guessing it would have raised her status quite a bit higher -even though it rightfully was lifted in the loss due to her huge impact.

          • Steglitz49

            That final caught the hearts and minds of the public because of the tsunami and nuclear meltdown in Japan. People wanted Japan to win and their wish came through. The victory brought succour to a sorely tried people.

            Thus, the WC-11 had a greater context just like the WC-54 final and in both the underdog won. The difference is that the German player Rahn is remembered from the Miracle in Bern while it is Alex from the Miracle in Frankfurt.

            37% of Japan were up during the night watching WC-11 final. Only Sweden’s 45% watching the ladies WC-2003 final beats that. The WC-15 final was watched by 8% of the US.

          • mockmook

            Sure, the USA might one day miss a WWC

            But the payoff in increased interest because of a rivalry with a strong Mexico team outweighs the risk

          • mockmook

            Plus it is that many more games for the USA to hone their craft against a meaningful and worthy opponent

          • Steglitz49

            Now there will be an opportunity for American lasses who don’t make the NWSL to play somewhere closer to home than Europe or Japan, provided this Mexican WoSo league allows foreign players.

          • Sinking In

            No, they are not. Their WNT is mostly American girls who failed to make the USWNT.

          • Steglitz49

            It is good to see that the spirit of Jack Charlton is alive and kicking 25-30 years on.

          • AlexH

            That’s not such a bad thing though. There are way more than 23 players capable of excelling internationally and given the lameness of our youth system there is really no reason to believe that all of the best players have a path to the top. I wouldn’t bet against the best 23 Mexican American castoffs against the USWNT if the Mexican federation shows a commitment to their women’s program by hiring a coach that is better than Jill Ellis. It’s a very low bar so I think that such a situation may one day come to pass.

          • Steglitz49

            Now that Zlatan is sidelined because of his injury he and ARod could coach the Mexican lasses.

      • Steglitz49

        Mexico was a founder member of the NWSL together with Canada and the US. Not that you would notice seeing how their players were treated. Nevertheless, does Mexico remain a co-member of the NWSL?

        • guest

          Mexico federation did not allocate/fund any Mexican players in NWSL in either of the last (2015 and 2016 seasons) 2 yrs. The current NWSL site has no references to Mexican federation.

          • Steglitz49

            Why would they allocate players when they did not get to play? The Mexican Federation may not care much about WoSo but they are not braindead.

    • TsovLoj

      I’m now going to point everyone who whines about the lack of NWSL in SoCal to the Tijuana team. Hell of a lot closer than most of the US is to the nearest NWSL team.

      • Bruce

        From what I hear, Xolas should be pretty good.

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    • Steglitz49

      Congratulations!

  • Steglitz49

    By their fruit ye shall know them. Zlatan has turned down a $15 million offer by Manchester United to pay him while he is injured, according to English media.

    Mourinho told the Swede that he wanted to trigger the extra year of his contract despite his devastating knee injury but Zlatan does not consider it right to accept when he won’t be playing.

  • guest

    Looks like the old Sky Blue uniform.

    • Steglitz49

      You are 14 hours behind the times and as it says in the article — “If the kit looks familiar, it should. Sky Blue FC wore the same kit with blue socks back in 2014”.

      High time to go to the optician and check yor watch.