Saturday, September 21, 2013

SI: Jason Kreis as Head Coach?

Sports Illustrated is reporting that NYCFC has contacted Real Salt Lake head coach Jason Kreis about taking over the City Blues when they begin play in 2015.

From the article:
Although owned by an English club that is in turn held by a member of Abu Dhabi’s ruling family, NYCFC intends to retain an American flavor. That starts with Reyna and Pernetti and may carry through to Kreis, a Nebraska native who attended Duke University and starred for FC Dallas and RSL before transitioning abruptly into coaching.

The father of two adolescent boys faces a difficult decision. He’s been in Utah since 2005, and, along with general manager and senior VP of soccer operations Garth Lagerwey, has built a veritable small-market dynasty. RSL won an MLS Cup championship in 2009, was a goal away from claiming the 2011 CONCACAF Champions League crown and has advanced to this year’s U.S. Open Cup final. Along with two additional MLS Cup semifinal berths, Kreis has compiled the league’s third-best regular season record over the past four-plus seasons.

In addition, the club has gained a reputation for developing young talent and for playing a brand of smart, stylish soccer that stands apart from the MLS crowd. RSL is effective and fun to watch, and Kreis has received much of the credit.

That’s important to Reyna, who wrote during a June Facebook chat with fans, “Our goal is to put a team on the field that plays exciting and entertaining soccer. We want to win and win with style.”
Interesting. He hasn't expressed any desire to leave RSL in the past, but perhaps Man City's resources could lure him to the Apple.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Crest Concept - Milo Kowalski

We have another club branding concept today, this time from Brooklyn-based designer Milo Kowalski. He's taken a very interesting tack, assimilating the city's visual iconography and incorporating it into a unified design.

With those as inspiration, here's Milo's primary logo:

There's a lot I like about this. I'm very partial to the subway token (it features prominently in my favorite concept), and pairing it with a shout-out to the Grand Central Terminal monogram is inspired.

I love this interlocking "NYC" mark. It's distinct, and would work well on its own, as shown in some of his merchansiding mockups:

I'd kill for that navy New Era cap.

I'm less enthusiastic about the wordmark. It doesn't scan as well as I would have hoped. A good script, great for the Hinsch Diner sign in Bay Ridge, but not for a longer name. And the capitals don't work at all for initials, needing lower-case letters to offset their heavy flourish. If he had something different for "F.C." I think I'd like this much more.

Finally, we get to my biggest concern with this excellent concept: the color scheme.

Blue and orange are the city's colors, and appear on our flag (if in lighter shades). But they're already used (again, in lighter shades) by the Mets. The National League club owns blue and orange in this city, as well they should. I'm not sure that we'd want to intrude on that, even setting aside NYCFC's Yankee ownership. That's one of the things I've loved so much about the interim navy-and-sky colors; they work so well together. Not only do they compliment each other while having sufficient hue differences to look distinct even in black and white, they're unique in the New York sporting scene.

Still, this is amazing work. His logos are outstanding, in either the primary version or the monogram alone:

This is just a taste: check out the full concept here.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Tim Pernetti Hired as CBO

More staffing news: NYCFC has hired former Rutgers athletics director Tim Pernetti as the team's chief business officer.

Pernetti is the second major hire after Director of Football Claudio Reyna. Pernetti was quoted as saying:
“I feel truly privileged to have been appointed to this position and to play a key role in building this club from its infancy. I relish the opportunity to be part of a global organization, and also to use my experience to create a first-class club for New Yorkers and one in which they will always have a voice.
The language sounds good, although Pernetti's recent record is somewhat mixed. He had received praise last year for his role in securing an invitation for the school to join the Big Ten conference, but last month he resigned in the wake of a coaching scandal. Basketball coach Mike Rice was videotaped yelling profane and abusive language at his players and throwing basketballs at their heads during practices. Rice was fired when the tapes were made public, and the scandal widened when it was revealed that Pernetti had previously seen the tapes but chose to suspend Rice for three games and fine him $50,000 rather than fire him.

Fortunately, he won't have to face such a situation in the professional game.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Crest Concept - Matthew Wolff

Here's another crest concept, this time from Matthew Wolff, a graduate student at Parsons. Wolff is no stranger to the city's soccer scene, having already done design work for the New York Cosmos in the form of their season ticket packages and having redesigned the branding for local soccer store Upper 90 (I'm a customer at their Atlantic Avenue location in Brooklyn).

We start with a very strong primary logo.

The pentagon is a good choice, a solid geometric shape with obvious connections to the five boroughs of New York City. Perhaps more interesting than a circle, shield or other common shapes, and it's nicely balanced with the banner and crown. I love using the Statue of Liberty's crown as a flourish on the top, as well as the touch of gold it brings to the color scheme. I'm not entirely sold on the white and navy rays; think there might be something better to feature in that space.

This is his secondary logo:

Also good, although there's something about the monogram that I don't like. It's a little too spindly, reminiscent of the monogram being used by Brooklyn Industries on their clothes this fall.

This may be a little too much gold, in the total absence of white.

I do love the shield-like two shades of blue in the background of the pentagram, however. Totally missed that in the primary logo, as it is obscured by the rays. Maybe that should be incorporated into the primary more.

Finally, we see his crest on a shirt:

That's outstanding. Really, really gorgeous. Even at a little distance, the pentagon/banner/crown creates a distinctive outline that's unmistakable against the blue field of the shirt.

Great concept.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Red Bull Running Scared

I saw this ad on the subway today, stressing how easy it is to get to Red Bull Arena from NYC:

Funny. For years, RBNY was content to ignore the city, but they seem to made a significant ad purchase in NYC in the last few months. Between the Cosmos and NYCFC, they could well become the third team in the city.

If only they had cared more before they had competition.