By Bob Mackin
Vision Vancouver mayoral candidate Gregor Robertson wants major league soccer in Vancouver.
That's what he told the crowd at the Oct. 1 mayoral debate at the public library.
"I'm a huge supporter of soccer and it's the most popular sport in our city and in our country," Robertson said. "I'm a hockey fan, too, but more people play soccer."
He noted the Vancouver Whitecaps proposal to build a waterfront stadium "is not looking very promising." Robertson suggested the False Creek Flats and the former Empire Stadium site as possible areas for a new stadium.
B.C. Place probably wouldn't work because the Major League Soccer Association prefers smaller, more intimate venues. He noted Philadelphia approved a waterfront stadium in six months and it now has an MLS team. (The stadium will actually be located in Chester, a suburb of the City of Brotherly Love).
He cited "no clear leadership" from the city in wanting a stadium.
But Mayor Sam Sullivan would probably beg to differ. His Worship was in New York City Wednesday to meet with the MLS commissioner at the league's headquarters. The league has invited applications for new franchises in time for the 2011 season.
No word on whether Sullivan made any progress.
Sadly, Kevin Hector and Trevor Whymark of Whitecaps fame did not accompany him on the trip. In 1979, both lads helped defeat the New York Cosmos to advance and win the North American Soccer League's Soccer Bowl.
All together now, "White is the colour, soccer is the game..."
© Vancouver Courier 2008