Latest in Crew relocation saga: Club will allow season ticket refunds
This week’s stories about the Columbus Crew under Gregg Berhalter should be focused on their Thursday playoff date with Atlanta United, one which has the potential to be an all-timer in terms of desperation entertainment from two hungry, fun teams.
But instead of talking about whether Federico Higuain will ride off into the sunset in a manner befitting of a Crew legend, we’re talking about season ticket refunds and relocation and the sloppiest way to go about ruining a positive time in the MLS calendar.
Crew owner Anthony Precourt is trying to engineer a relocation of original MLS club Columbus Crew to Austin courtesy of a “Hey, maybe I’ll stay” guise which is about as thinly veiled as the garlic Paulie chops for his prison sauce in “Goodfellas.”
Precourt was initially not going to allow refunds to season ticket holders ahead of the 2018 season, as the club will still be in Ohio (and could, we must say, stick around beyond that especially as Austin isn’t exactly begging for another town’s team). Now he is, for about a week, from ColumbusCrewSC.com:
There’s so much “damned if you, damned if you don’t” here. Imagine: you love your club and don’t want it to leave, but also don’t want to give Precourt any more money than necessary. And Precourt can then say, “Well, this town didn’t really love the club, anyway.”
(Trust me, as a Buffalonian who had to live with a decade-plus of relocation rumors for the Buffalo Bills, I know a bit about a community being held hostage. Even when it turns out well, with the Pegulas pledging to keep the Bills and Sabres here forever, you never forget the angst of your childhood teams having an uncertain future because a league or owner could make more money).
This comes about a week after the Crew owner posted what is perhaps the most unintentionally hilarious pair of Tweets in American soccer history (It’s still baffling he hasn’t deleted the second tweet). Read on, and then imagine what it takes to think, “Hmmm, us. Doesn’t seem right given I’m going to rip their team from them. I better correct that to say, ‘You all.’”