Musing Miller – a taste of the Big Apple

THE Musing Miller gives his take on Rotherham United’s decision to name their new stadium after the Big Apple...

New York will mark an exciting new start for Rotherham United, but it could be thousands of miles from where the club want to be.

The decision to name the new £20million stadium New York was made as it is built on the site of an old foundry that made New York’s fire hydrants.

Also the area has traditionally been known as New York.

Rotherham Council leader Roger Stone said he hopes the move will be able to help the town and the club create links with The Big Apple.

I’m sure the Mayor of NYC will see Rotherham as a worthy partner for the American city.

If the club want to move on up the leagues and progress in the coming years should they be looking towards a historic name for a new chapter in the club’s story?

It is a chance to rebrand the club to a new younger audience but is picking a traditional name going to be able to do this or will the glamour of the American city attract crowds?

Visiting fans may be looking for the American experience when they come to the ground.

The name may even bring in some new fans and followers from overseas. Will these be looking for a sporting event that they are used to?

American sport and ideals are steeped in commercialisation, franchises and making money. The ethics of stateside sport are very different to those over here.

This is shown by the naming of the New York Red Bulls football team.

Are Rotherham only going to be selling American merchandise at the stadium, such as hot dogs and popcorn, during the game? Will they be renaming themselves to Rotherham United Soccer Club?

It’s unlikely this will happen and the move is just a publicity stunt that has a history to the site.

However it has been a successful publicity stunt.

The move has been a PR success for the club attracting mainstream American media coverage from the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post and Fox News all covering the story, as well as many of the British media organisations.

Only time will tell if the club will be looking to do more with the stadium than just a name, but before the team gets a chance at The Big Apple they need to concentrate on the pitch rather than getting caught up in the bright city lights.