The Smack and Scold
If this were Medieval times (the era, not the restaurant), Columbus and Los Angeles would be preparing for a joust between a 20-year knight and a hotshot newcomer of the soccer kingdom.
The Columbus Crew SC, one of the first ten teams of Major League Soccer (MLS), has been defined by its colors. So much so that the club affectionately and proudly goes by the nickname, “The Black & Gold.” Their sobriquet and trademark color scheme, unique in MLS for 20 years, has exclusively distinguished Columbus and its fans from the other original 9 teams and continues to stand-out among the league’s 20 other clubs.
The 22nd club recently entered MLS: LA FC.
Just as they’ve become the second MLS team in Los Angeles (adios Chivas USA), the frustration they will receive from soccer fans in Columbus will be second to none when they visit for a soccer match in the future (except for Portland).
The LA FC group, less likely blind to reality and more likely deliberately provocative, chose black and gold as its primary colors.
“Black and Gold embody the success, glamour, and urban texture of Los Angeles.” (LA FC Online)
When thinking of Los Angeles, do you composite the colors black and gold above all others in your mind?
Anthony Precourt tweeted his reaction from the January 7th LA FC presentation.
How does the owner of Crew SC feel about this?
“Hat’s off to @LAFC. Absolutely crushed it with your new crest and colors. @MLS”
“Only one comment. Columbus Crew SC is the true Black and Gold! Maybe you roll with Gold and Black? @LAFC #CrewSC”
A tweet is one thing, but hopefully Mr. Precourt understands how important tradition and character are to this city and soccer club (the banana kits, cough cough), grows a stronger spine and makes a larger public statement alongside the club’s infectiously energetic ambassador Frankie Hejduk about Crew SC’s decorated (and checkered) history, identity and team-to-team decorum. The brazen brand management color decision made by LA FC, at its core, violates a level of sportsmanship of the beautiful game in MLS.
These are not just colors, but much more. It’s not just poor form, it’s really not cool.
The LA FC logo is fine, but the color choice unmistakably spray paints a lack of respect for its storied Midwestern counterpart. There are dozens of other color combinations they could have selected for this league, but they chose to use a stick instead of a paint brush as their illustrative tool.
LA FC should receive a warm welcome as MLS’s 22nd team. Their entrance is exciting news. However, their naive freshman status does not excuse their team of brand and marketing professionals from deliberately poking Columbus Crew SC in the eye with a stick with tips dripping in friendly shades. LA FC’s logo/crest brainstorming surely involved pictures of every team’s logo and colors with explanations of every team’s history and defining characteristics.
Color Columbus mad.
Actually, coloring just Columbus black & gold is all we want.