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A new era begins at FC Dallas

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The product on the field isn't too bad at all these days at Pizza Hut Park ... now let's see of a new man at the top of the totem poll can produce the same level of competence in the front office.
The product on the field isn't too bad at all these days at Pizza Hut Park ... now let's see of a new man at the top of the totem poll can produce the same level of competence in the front office.

FC Dallas’ new president reported this week. Doug Quinn was hired in June but needed to finish up his business at S.U.M. (Soccer United Marketing), which is Major League Soccer’s marketing arm.

Or maybe he was just wasn't in a hurry to get here because he knows how much hard work lies ahead. Indeed, the man is inheriting a mess in Dallas.

Par of what he inherits: a club that just paid somewhere south of $900,000 to bring in European champion Inter Milan can’t sell out the building (at least as this morning, a few hours prior to tonight's 8 p.m. kickoff on FSC).

Nor can the people now working beneath him figure out that starting a match in August at 5 p.m., as they will Sunday, is the worst idea since credit default swaps. My weather report says it will be 103 degrees today at 5 p.m., and I would imagine it will be about the same at 5 p.m. in three days time. Word to you fans those sun-baked east stands: you may as well bring along your own personal dermatologist.

We could go on all day about particulars, why and wherefores of it all, but here is the bottom line: this club is lost and has been for some time, adrift at sea, suffering from years of poor decisions, poor leadership, one especially poor GM, poor customer oversight, debilitating (and telling) levels of front office churn and general market foolishness.

Quinn is a smart man who will definitely help in at least one area, stitching together the club’s sponsorship initiative, which is hemorrhaging badly at the moment. (click forward for more....)

He knows how to move in corporate circles, so he will surely be of assistance in that area. Otherwise, recovering from the cumulative effects of the years isn’t going to take weeks or even months. This, too, will take years.

On the other hand, … you can file this one under “Be careful what you ask for,” or under “It could be worse.” Many moons ago, many fans in North Texas desperately wanted Tom Hicks to take over the local club. He was owner of the Rangers and Stars and, although some of us on the inside wondered if his empire was indeed a house of cards, seemed to many to be an owner who sought Ws over profit. Well, now we know better. He’s been exposed, and then some. Given his financial plight and how reviled he is by fans of Liverpool and the Texas Rangers, can anyone imagine what kind of mess we’d be in the middle of if he also held the checkbook at FC Dallas? MLS might even be looking at a sorry situation like AC St. Louis had earlier this year, with players and staff not getting paid and threats of a mid-season total club collapse. How would that look for MLS?