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Sacramento Republic FC’s game plan to win MLS club

Members of the Tower Bridge Battalion celebrate a goal during the match between the Sacramento Republic FC and the Orange County SC at Papa Murphy’s Park in Sacramento on April 1.
Members of the Tower Bridge Battalion celebrate a goal during the match between the Sacramento Republic FC and the Orange County SC at Papa Murphy’s Park in Sacramento on April 1. rbenton@sacbee.com

There’s no doubt about it, Sacramento is America’s most “MLS-ready” city. We have the fans, a shovel-ready stadium plan and an all-star ownership team that includes local and national business leaders with professional sports experience.

Last week, I joined with Mayor Darrell Steinberg and Sacramento Republic FC founder Warren Smith to announce that the Republic FC will be the official identity of our Major League Soccer team.

It’s time to #BringItHome.

I firmly believe games are won or lost well before the teams take the field, and we’ve been working overtime for the last few years to do what is necessary to give Sacramento and our fans a bid that would stand out against all others. We’ve done just that, investing thousands of hours and millions of dollars to ensure every detail is addressed and performed to Sacramento’s high standards. Our work continues, but we are confident that our great team and visionary proposal to bring MLS to Sacramento will be successful.

Eleven other cities are competing, but Sacramento’s bid stands out. Our plan already meets and exceeds all MLS expansion requirements. Sacramento’s stadium in the railyard is approved and financed. We have great ownership including local and national leaders, and we will join the MLS with a diehard fan base that would stack up against any other in the league. Anyone who has been to a game at Papa Murphy’s Park knows we have some of the best and most passionate soccer fans in the country.

So while our competitors play catch-up, we’re going to run even faster to #BringItHome once and for all. Here’s what it is all about:

▪  20,000 Voices: By December, Republic FC will connect directly with 20,000 Sacramento Republic FC fans and Sacramentans – the number of seats in our new MLS stadium. We’ll be doing town halls, surveys, forums, focus groups and one-on-one conversations to ensure that our fans and community guide the future of the club.

▪  Keep It Local: Republic FC will ensure strong participation by local workers and local businesses in the construction and operation of the new stadium to deliver jobs and opportunities to our region.

▪  Farm to Field: Republic FC will harness the renowned agricultural base of our region and build stadium concessions partnerships with a broad and diverse group of local farms, restaurants and breweries.

▪  Citizen Architects: Republic FC will challenge fans to submit design proposals for a portion of the plaza surrounding the stadium to be developed by and for the public.

▪  Seat at the Table: Republic FC will ensure that fans have a direct and consistent audience with the board via representatives selected by the fans.

Sacramento owes a debt of gratitude to my friend Warren Smith, who founded Sacramento Republic FC. We would not be here today without his tireless work to forge our team and its “indomitable” identity. He brought Sacramento a USL championship and built a culture that we must continue building into the future.

We all believe in the power of Sacramento’s potential and its people. That’s why our team has gone “all in” to fuel Sacramento Republic FC’s MLS bid. Sacramento is a world-class city and working together we will #BringItHome.

Kevin Nagle is chairman and CEO of Sac Soccer & Entertainment Holdings and the owner of Sacramento Republic FC. He can be contacted at Kevin@thenaglecompanies.com.

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