With the announcement of St. Louis City SC as the branding for the 2023 MLS expansion team and the reporting of Saint Louis City folding at the end of the 2020 USL Championship season, the future of St. Louis pro soccer became clearer.
The unveiling of the St. Louis City SC official name, crest and colors comes as the team preps for a 2023 debut, going Sacramento in the MLS league lineup that will stand at 30 teams. The meaning behind the team name: SC stands for both Soccer Club and Soccer Capital. The team crest features an arch recognizing the St. Louis Gateway Arch, while the horizontal lines represent the Missouri and Mississippi rivers. Four primary colors will identify the team: City Red, River Blue, Energy Yellow and Arch Steel Gray.
The team will feature the only majority female-led ownership group in Major League Soccer, led by Carolyn Kindle Betz.
“St. Louis City SC is a reflection of the STLMade movement that is at the heart of everything we do, and truly represents our region’s diverse and optimistic spirit,” said Kindle Betz in a press statement. “Our desire from day one has been to be bigger than soccer and to become part of the fabric of St. Louis and a symbol of our future. This is a significant step forward for our club – and our region.”
While St. Louis City SC will keep fans excited as a new downtown stadium and an MLS squad recruited, there will be no live soccer for fans to enjoy, as Saint Louis FC of USL Championship will be ending operations at the end of the current season. World Wide Technology CEO and former Saint Louis University player Jim Kavanaugh is a minority investor in St. Louis City SC, and with the MLS effort bound to take up most of the local soccer oxygen, maintaining the Saint Louis FC team, per SI:
When contacted on Tuesday, a Saint Louis FC spokesperson said, “The ownership decided that with the financial impact of COVID-19 and MLS on the horizon, it didn’t make sense to continue operations.”
Last season Saint Louis FC averaged 4,532 fans per match, close to the league average of 4,476 fans per match.
So we have the future of St. Louis pro soccer: no live play in 2021 and 2022, followed by an MLS debut.