Friday, May 15, 2009
Barca to Vancouver?
Following the announcement that Barcelona would be playing two friendlies on the west coast (August 1st in LA and August 5th in Seattle), rumours started that a 3rd west coast game would be added. Immediately in the Vancouver market, people in Vancouver, including Full-Time host Mike Martignago, were claiming that the Whitecaps would be a perfect fit with the schedule. It also fits because of a large stadium to play in (BC Place holds around 60,000) and a future MLS franchise.
The other option is Barcelona playing the San Jose Earthquakes. The 'Quakes could broker a deal to play at Stanford Stadium for a one off match and could likely fill the stadium and perhaps get people interested in a team already in the MLS. The other thing that puts San Jose as the front runner would be the higher Spanish speaking population.
In Vancouver, BC Place is open for a possible match on August 9th, 10th, 11th... following a BC Lions game and prior to an Aerosmith/ZZ Top concert.
Schedule wise, it would work out perfectly for Barcelona to play in Vancouver however, it's unlikely to happen. Well, let me rephrase that. It would work out perfectly for Barcelona to play in Vancouver, but they likely won't be playing the Vancouver Whitecaps. "We currently do not have any plans for an international game", that's what Whitecaps President Bob Lenarduzzi told me. He also said that it would be nice, but not this year.
It's not really a secret that the Whitecaps, once in the MLS, will probably bring some top international clubs to the city and BC Place, it's a natural fit. It just doesn't sound like anything will happen this year.
Here's trekking down to Seattle for two games this summer as the Sounders play Chelsea and Barcelona. And here's to looking forward to 2011 and debating which clubs Vancouver should try and bring to BC Place.