Red Bull New York may be for sale (again)

Thanks to yesterday’s report from SI.com’s Grant Wahl

…and an earlier report from ESPN,

…and a lack of a 3rd Designated Player signing in the summer,

…and backtracking on the decision to field a USL Pro team in 2015

(Slow blink.)

… and the Autumn breezes blow in,

… and the moon cycles through its phases.

Now the internet is swirling with rumors that Red Bull New York’s owner Red Bull GmbH is looking to dip out on their little soccer experiment; or, at the very least, they are getting bored. According to Wahl’s story, Red Bull has been engaged in exploratory talks with other groups — including Manchester City, before they partnered with the Yankees in the Bronx — to discuss selling the club and/or Red Bull Arena.

With a swiftness and clarity unfamiliar to RBNY fans, the story was quickly denied by the team and commissioner Don Garber. Coach Mike Petke — I imagine with his hands raised, backing away from a microphone — said he had no idea what anyone was talking about when asked for his thoughts.

As a longtime fan dating back to when we were named after a totally different corporation (MetroMedia), I struggle with this news. Not with the idea that the team could be sold, not with the notion that I could be supporting the same team, with a third name/badge/set of colors in less than 20 years, but with the idea that this is even news.

It’s not that I don’t care. I love my team, and I love the absurdity of what was once the wealthiest team in MLS also being synonymous with futility (we are America’s Arsenal on good days; Tottenham on our worse). I love never knowing what the headlines will bring from day-to-day, but this one … meh.

I’m desperately trying to find the drama in the possibility of a regime change, but regime changes and how to cope with them is one of the first chapters in the Metro-Bulls Fan Handbook, right after “Hey, Did You Know the Team Was Located in New Jersey?” The fact that Red Bull has been around for almost nine full seasons is kind of remarkable in the ‘why doesn’t anyone love us, laugh in the face of the Devil, screw you and your punk-ass successfully run organization’ mentality that’s required to be a fan of this team without wanting to harm yourself and others.

To be honest I’m a bit surprised by the volume raised by my supporting cohorts over the story. We’ve seen this movie before, but many are still yelling at the screen when they think the monster’s coming around the corner. Shrug.

Even with the stories of our Austrian overlords looking to leave us behind for greener pastures, I think we’ll all be OK, assuming the next billionaire in line isn’t someone completely horrific … like Vincent Tan, or Sheik Mansour in the Bronx.

Besides, I have it on good authority that Red Bull is selling to the Cosmos, buying Chivas R.I.P., and moving it to San Diego.