Oh ... No! Whitecaps in BIG Trouble ...
With a 5,500 average game crowd, the Whitecaps still can't break even ...
Whitecaps owner fed up, puts team on the block
David Stadnyk is frustrated by the mounting costs associated with running the team and paints a bleak future for A-League soccer in the Vancouver area.
(posted May. 10, 8:17PM EDT)
VANCOUVER -- Frustrated over losing close to $2 million over the last two seasons, Vancouver Whitecaps owner David Stadnyk says the A-League soccer team is up for sale.
Stadnyk, who also owns Vancouver Breakers of the W-League, said the future of both teams are in jeopardy.
“It's not looking good,” Stadnyk told The Team 1040 radio Friday.
“If the community doesn't want to support the team, I think the team is in jeopardy and I think we may not have the Whitecaps here for long and the Breakers for that matter.”
Stadnyk said he's willing to sell all of the team, or take on a partner, but isn't prepared to keep suffering loses.
“If there is someone out there that wants to come in and participate with me, or for that matter take over the team and purchase it, that is on the table,” he said.
“I want nothing more than to see soccer grow and prosper in the community but dollars do become a limited resource at some point. Having spent some $2 million the last couple of three years, I've done my part.”
The Whitecaps opened the A-League season with a 1-0 win over the Minnesota Thunder last week before a crowd of 5,816 at Swangard Stadium in Burnaby. By Friday, the team had sold just 39 tickets for Sunday's double-header which featured the Breakers against Albuquerque and the Whitecaps playing El Paso.
“We need at least 500 more season tickets and we need to average at least 500 more people walking up to games,” Stadnyk said.
Stadnyk bought the team, then called the 86ers, from B.C. Lions owner David Braley in August 2000.
Last year the team advanced to the A-League semifinals but Stadnyk said he lost almost $800,000, despite averaging 5,542 fans a game, the second-largest average attendance in franchise history.
During the off-season Whitecaps fired manager Bob Lenarduzzi, there was a 20-per-cent cut in the player budget and head coach Dale Mitchell left to join Canada's under-20 team.
The A-League has also been reduced to 18 teams from 21.