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Southern Happenings: ‘Heated debate’ in Florida and another Atlanta soccer complex?

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel ran a story on Monday profiling magicJack, the new team in town (sort of).  The Sun-Sentinel article has the same confused tone that every other piece of information coming out of Boca Raton has had.  There are still many questions to be answered about magicJack, but new questions have also been introduced.

MagicJack Owner Dan Borislow said that he is in a “heated debate” with WPS over various things, including gameday fees of $20,000.  WPS CEO Anne-Marie Eileraas said that discussions have not been heated, but “professional,” although that is contradictory to many sources that have stated there is little communication between Borislow and WPS.

From the Sun-Sentinel:

“We need to make sure everyone involved in WPS and the women’s game is on the same page,” Borislow said. “We’re having a heated debate about moving things forward. When that’s worked out, you’ll see our first press release.”

Borislow is challenging the league’s hierarchy over required game-day costs, which he said amounts to $20,000 per game. “That’s a ridiculous number. You’re not getting much out of it except you get to play a game,” he said.

The women’s soccer league CEO Anne-Marie Eileraas said Borislow’s characterization of a “heated debate” was news to her, noting that “discussions have been very productive and very professional.” She said the costs Borislow refers to cover expenses for, among other things, a league-wide stats service, producing game videos, and having an emergency medical vehicle at stadium sites.

Exactly what getting “on the same page” entails remains to be seen.  The piece also states that just 15 magicJack players are currently training in the absence of U.S. Women’s National Team players.

Breaking Ground or Wasting It?

In Atlanta, a group of wealthy investors is looking to build a soccer complex that could one day attract an MLS team.  The proposed $30 million youth soccer complex would be in Alpharetta, outside of Atlanta.  The metro area already boasts Silverbacks Park, a complex that boasts a 5,000+ seat stadium in Atlanta, and  KSU Soccer Stadium in Kennesaw, Ga.  The former is the home of the NASL’s Atlanta Silverbacks and the latter is obviously home to the Atlanta Beat.

And so the question remains: How many potential soccer stadiums does Atlanta need?  The Silverbacks and the Beat both fail to fill up their stadiums as is.  This project, led by Cruzeiro Esporte Clube of Brazil, is yet to get off the ground.  However, the thought of building yet another stadium for an MLS team seems to be an outlandish for a metro area that is yet to fully embrace WPS or men’s Division II soccer.

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