As we’ve seen by developments this week, Traffic Sports USA has been responsible for organizing many international soccer events and has owned the Fort Lauderdale Strikers since they joined North American Soccer League as an expansion team since 2010 but, in my opinion, Traffic does a poor job at running a local community-based professional soccer franchise.
The frustration among many Strikers fans to Traffic Sports recently prompted a loyal Striker supporter to take action by photographing an old broken-down digital traffic signal that was still faithfully working for the Fort Lauderdale Strikers. Well, sort of.
Prior to every home game, an old sign appears roadside on Commercial Blvd. in front of Lockhart Stadium. It appears two days before every game or on the day of game. It stands alone and helps fans know where to enter Lockhart, the home of the Fort Lauderdale Strikers.
I’ve driven past it, but it never occurred to me that the traffic signal is missing several letters. You can barely read what it’s trying to say.
Before the start of this past Saturday’s home game between the Strikers and Indy Eleven, a member of the Strikers supporters group, Flight 19, posted the photo of the sign on the Twitter account (see below).
— Flight 19 (@Flight_19) April 26, 2014
Before long, the tweet went viral and caused a plethora of responses. Someone tweeted that they heard if you kick the sign, the letter S will magically appear along with the letter I and the letter C.
The broken sign is a metaphor for the lack of funding Traffic Sports gives to the Strikers, to support the Strikers team and brand in the community. Insiders reveal that Traffic has slashed player and marketing budgets year after year, resulting in fans feeling frustrated with the lack of funding on and off the field.
It’s time for Traffic Sports to decide whether to increase the funding to the Strikers in order to develop marketing strategies that are on par with other NASL clubs who are spending more money to grow the popularity of their teams. And yes, to spend some money to fix the old traffic sign (which is a poor first impression for anyone visiting Lockhart). Or perhaps Traffic Sports should sell the team to someone who can devote their time, passion and money to the team.