If all MLS owners were like Matthew FC McConaughey Austin FC investors, they would all be fans
When the opportunity to join the ownership team of the new Austin FC Major League Soccer club was given to award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey, the only problem was whether he would get too involved.
“It was like this: Absolutely, I’m involved. How much can I get into? That became a challenge,” McConaughey said. “Because I wanted to be more.”
Yes, it’s hard to believe, McConaughey is very enthusiastic. Is not it? And with Tuesday’s nearly 27 minutes spent covering football with reporters, it was easy to come to the conclusion that if all MLS teams had a McConaughey, the “first four” men set by the league would push even harder than the men’s league itself.
With Austin FC starting its first MLS season on Saturday at 6pm in the LAFC, McConaughey is not only an investor in the club but also his “Minister of Culture”. This is stated on the club’s website among the seven members of the club, which is the first professional team in the city’s major league. Austin has been involved in major college sports for more than a century, but he is different.
“You move 150 people a day. With a lot of people, we are one of the fastest growing cities in the nation, “McConaughey said.” All of the former – most of them – went to the University of Texas. Most people here didn’t go to the University of Texas. They come here looking for a group. They come from different parts of the world.
“We are a very multicultural place, and football is a game that invites all cultures, all diversity to the field in a common language.… So we have a universal language, and we are already universally hungry. Besides, we already had a great time with other common denominators that everyone loves, this is, music and food.We only needed a third.
“This is the first time that Austin, the city of Austin, has a team that represents our city. This is the first time we have taken root in our time city“. He actually said cit-ay. It’s not a joke.
McConaughey is taking a rational view of the expectations of an MLS expansion team. It’s hard to know what to expect in terms of results, as Atlanta United in 2017 were immediately huge as they entered the league and won the MLS Cup in their second season. LAFC finished third in its first season, in 2018, and won the Supporters ’Shield the following year. FC Cincinnati won just 10 games in the first two years after being promoted from USL.
Austin FC goes to a beautiful Q2 stadium house built to hold 20,000. 15,000 season tickets were sold for the opening season with a waiting list of 15,000 people. To get the new building ready, the club will play a six-road match against the early June 19 San Jose Earthquake.
“It’s going to be nice to get out on the street and pull out some scars on the road before we get back,” McConaughey said. “We will learn some things. We are young. How successful can we be in the first year? We will see. But Austin FC isn’t something we didn’t build one day, and we won’t be in fashion. This is the beginning. The season is planted to grow large, strong oaks. A legend“. He managed to accent the two syllables there.
McConaughey acknowledged that after investing the initial money and enthusiasm it was important to “sit back and let the professionals do what they do”. That may be the sports director Claudio Reyna, the sales and marketing team for the architectural firm that designed the stadium, the legend of the U.S. Men’s National Team that was key to New York City FC’s initial success.
“Now, here we are. We’ve been out for a week, “McConaughey said.” We’ve been working on that. We’ve been building brick by brick. We’ve been getting our help from person to person throughout the city. We understand green, yes perst – but now it’s live. Woo-hoo! I just picked up a few chills.
“It simply came to our notice then. I know we will come on match day. I’m not squeezing, calmer. I’m doing an exhale, for a moment: Okay, we’re done. Now we come to the table to eat. Now we go up to the field and play. Let’s learn. We know what we are striving for. We know it’s a 100-year war. We know we won’t have a winless season. So how do we build? How do we learn? Now the fun begins. “
McConaughey said a soccer ball is “the greatest invitation in the world,” that a child could only be kicking a ball in a football in Rome’s square and that if someone wandered off, it would inevitably be thrown by two friends.
The sport has seen tremendous growth in this country over the past 25 years, although it has benefited more than the MLS has pushed for. The addition of another fast-growing market, however, could help make the league even more significant in the advancement of football.
“You have to have a long-term vision. There are shortcuts. Every business has a shortcut. We all have shortcuts in our personal lives. Some of them are good; some of them are good,” McConaughey said. “Most of the time, especially when you want to build something … think long term.
“The game of football is not going anywhere. Now the MLS is settled. We have a new football player who has just come to town for MLS: Austin FC. We worked very hard to say: Make a long-term decision. Make a decision that will pay us, then have a higher percentage of return on success. If you get into something with a property mentality, not a renter mentality – yes, I’d love to do that; maybe we’ll see how it goes – you won’t make the right decisions, you won’t make the right cultural decisions. “