Kansas City Trip Recap
A recap of Orlando City President Phil Rawlins and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer's trip to Kansas CityIt was an exciting time this past weekend for Orlando City and their aspirations toward becoming a Major League Soccer (MLS) franchise. Orlando City President Phil Rawlins and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer visited facilities around the Kansas City area, including a recently renovated Arrowhead Stadium and Sporting Kansas City’s new multi-purpose facility – LIVESTRONG Sporting Park.
Rawlins commented on visiting the facilities around Kansas City and the trip as a whole.
“The key objective was for the group to see first-hand what a soccer stadium looks and feels like,” said Rawlins. “The second objective was to have them experience first-hand the excitement and interest Mayor League Soccer produces and show them that we could have that here in Orlando. I feel like we accomplished both.”
After a series of meetings and a tour of Arrowhead Stadium on Wednesday and Thursday, the trip ended with the group attending a Sporting Kansas City home match against the Houston Dynamo.
Mayor Dyer has previously stated support for City’s goals, including a recent message from OCSC’s playoff pep rally held in front of City Hall at the beginning of the month.
“There’s interest in MLS and bringing the Lions to the next level, so we want to explore that opportunity,” Dyer said at the recent pep rally.
Friday night’s game was a sell-out for Sporting KC, with over 19,800 in attendance. A dramatic last minute equalizer earned a draw for KC, who remains atop the Eastern Conference with 51 points.
Orlando City’s owner said while the late goal was exciting and created a thrilling ending, the objective was to continue to reinforce the plan for MLS with the Mayor and his staff. Rawlins says that that part was a complete success.
“Last week was a significant step forward,” said Rawlins. “The mayor and his team took a lot away from the trip, and not just ideas about a soccer stadium, but also great ideas for the rebuild of the Citrus Bowl. It was a great trip and I look forward to working with the Mayor, and his staff, to one day bring an MLS franchise to Orlando.”
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