Next thing you know, Don Garber will be down on apple pie, Mom, and that John Mellencamp song about America and pickup trucks. Speaking at the B&C/Multichannel News Hispanic Television Summit at the Copacabana in New York this morning, the commissioner of Major League Soccer—moments after sharing his experience going to the ’69 World Series at Shea Stadium–admitted to skipping last night’s Mets do-or-die championship series game on TV to watch FC Barcelona do some soccer thing against Chelsea. Making matters worse, a Multichannel colleague tells me the telecast wasn’t even live; in fact, my co-worker saw the game live before trekking out to Shea for the Met game.
That yellow card aside, Garber did share some interesting insights about MLS’ business strategy, as it focuses on the Hispanic market instead of blue-eyed American kids kicking balls in their back yard. “It’s not about the 18 million kids in the suburbs,” he said. “Pro soccer wouldn’t have happened here if not for what’s happening with the Hispanic population.”
By Michael Malone