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Introducing Seattle Sounders FC


The soccer fans of Seattle have spoken. The official name for the new MLS expansion franchise in Seattle is the Seattle Sounders FC.

The nickname Seattle Sounders FC beat out Seattle FC, Seattle Alliance and Seattle Republic, which were the three original choices in the club’s write-in ballot.

What’s my take? They could have done without the FC but you can bet the FC will become an afterthought. The MLS Seattle team WILL be known as the Sounders.

Like it? Love it? Hate it?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Score one out of three for you, Paul.

    It is true that Arsenal do not have “Gunners” as part of their offical name, but Tottenham do have “Hotspur” and Bolton do have “Wanderers” as part of their official names.

    Check their official websites: and

    As for Seattle Sounders FC, it’s actually exactly the name I voted for. I’m so used to seeing FC in soccer team names that they seem naked with out them, and I love my Seattle Sounders, so it seemed like the perfect combo.

  2. The nickname should be part of the official club name because it is a North American professional sports franchise. It ain’t rocket surgery.

    Similarly, “Seattle FC” is great if you are more concerned with proving just how international/Euro-cool you are than actually attracting new fans and growing the game. Lamentably, a sizeable minority of American soccer “fans” remain more focused on the former than the latter. If you want soccer to at least supplant hockey, Sounders is the way to go with sports fans in general and Seattle fans in particular.

  3. Thank God! I was so afraid of a Emerald City or something. Go Sounders! (I’m east of the Mississippi and not a fan of Seattle, but like good soccer names).

  4. Whales FC?… I’m stoked on the name since it was my write-in vote Sounders FC, best of both worlds.

    At least they’re not Chelsea of Seattle Alliance or some bs like RSL/Chivas.

    The Seattle Republic of Bremerton would also be in the atrocious category.

  5. i voted for that name… sounds great 😉

    and i don’t agree with Ives, ‘FC’ sounds great!!

    (deep down i want to take the word ‘football’ back, instead of soccer, here in america)

  6. phew! thank god we are bringing back as many NASL names as possible. It’s great to retain as many links to a failed league that soccer haters already compare MLS to when dismissing it.

    Now if we could just bring the Cosmos back…

    I don’t know why they allowed a write in. They should have just called it Seattle FC or FC Seattle and let the fans call them the Sounders if they wanted to. I wish all the teams in the league would do that honestly.

    Paul @ 4:12pm is spot on about that.


    because all of those teams you mentioned don’t have any of those names ‘officially’ in their club names. Bolton could easily be changed to the Bolton Douchebags next year if the fans ran with it.

  7. from what I read the name “sounders” was never registered as a trademark-the FC was added so they could trademark the name and control the image/merchandise rights as a result

  8. Thank you irishapple21 (and everyone else who has pointed out this nicknames argument is stupid).

    1. As the above-mentioned pointed out, Glasgow Rangers FC…

    2. Why do people keep talking about the “proper” or “traditional” naming formula. Chivas. Once Caldas. Orlando Pirates (not FL). Young Boys Wankdorf. Newell’s Old Boys. Not every professional soccer team in the world follows the “[insert city/neighborhood/district/etc. name here] FC” formula. There are many variations on naming…

    3. Why are some so eager to abandon the American naming style? I think a name like Seattle Sounders FC is ideal–the name is both regionally significant and maintains something of our country’s naming style. I’m not proposing we need to bring back names like “The Dallas Burn” or “San Jose Clash”…I just think it’d be better if we didn’t have a league full of “FC Dallas,” “Toronto FC,” and that horrific monster of a name–“Real Salt Lake”.

    I feel the same about those who insist we start calling the game football. Why? First of all, we’re not the only country to call it soccer. Other countries have names for the sport that sound nothing like “football” and don’t translate to “foot” and “ball”–are there arguments going on in Italy right now that they need to ditch their word, “calcio,” in favor of something more in-line with the rest of the world?

    We’ve obviously got some identity issues here, guys. Are regionally irrelevant names like The Tampa Bay Mutiny stupid? Yes. Should we go back to 1996 rules with those ridiculous MLS-style PK’s and overtime just for the sake of establishing a regional unique-ness? Of course not. But we should learn to be comfortable in our own skin. I honestly think arbitrarily calling a team “United” or “Real” reflects much worse than a name like Seattle Sounders or Kansas City Wizards–blindly immitating the English (or Spanish, or Italians…) isn’t going to help this sport grow here, or gain the respect of other countries.

  9. Perfect! Naming the team to something meaningful to that region, fan-base, or community is brilliant and a great way to bring character and meaning to the league. I’d say, it’s been done right. Cheers to the new Seattle Sounders FC Organization for listening and being representative of its fan-base. Looks like they may be far more responsive and thoughtful than many/most MLS-teams ownership could/can claim to be.

  10. Turns out Sammy Sounder had a young woman inside the suit. Really felt bad about the “show us your blowhole” chant after that.

  11. Yo PJHArdy–google Manchester United Mascot and you will a BIG Goofy Red Devil walking around and they seem to be doing fine.

    IMO-the Seattle fans wanted it and love it, good enough for me.

  12. I like it! Yeah the FC part is going to be in the back of my mind which usually is with other teams too. Seeing the FC part is fine but I doubt many of us actually say it out loud. Seattle Sounders or the Sounders has a nice ring to it!

  13. I like it. The FC I would prefer as an SC, but I’m not complaining. It beats the pants off of Seattle Republic. It really, really beats the pants off of some contrived, wanna-be Euro name like “CSKA Seattle.”

    Now, people of Seattle, let the DP speculation begin! Shunske Nakamura?

  14. “Tradition from the First Kick.”

    Not too many MLS teams can say that. I bet fans in Utah are steamed that they were forced to take a LAME name, while the fans in Seattle got to choose.


    And as far as the mascot goes, will Sammy Sounder get promoted with the club? (FYI: Sammy is an orca whale (or, a guy in an orca costume), and was on the club logo from their re-birth in 1994 thru 2002, when they went back to the NASL logo. Yes, I’m a nerd.)

  15. Love it. Glad reason prevailed. As a professional marketeer….names really don’t matter the brand will be built. And if Thiery Henry was to join the team and they changed the name to the Seattle Henri’s well lets just say it would add to the dimension of the branding.

  16. “Great news! Now all we need is for the Portland Timbers and Vancouver Whitecaps to return. The greatest rivalry in American football history awaits.”

    So true. The Sounders will be selling out Qwest in no time.

  17. Good compromise. They combined the international with the local traditions. Personally, I’ve never understood the snobbery about not having a formal nickname for your team because it’s soccer. Being slaves to European sporting conventions doesn’t mean you’re taken more seriously abroad. What’s next, should they also have to a basketball team and a racquetball team to make it like a true European-style sporting “club”? Quite frankly the MLS probably gets more snickers right now for names like Real Salt Lake and Chivas USA than they will for this. The organization’s credibility will ultimately have everything to do with the quality of play. In the meantime this name choice will help transition fans of the Sounders and the Seattle area in general to the new team over more comfortably. In the same vein as not forcing the promotion/relegation issue right now we don’t have to go along with what’s done in Europe just to try to keep up with the Joneses. North America has its own unique audience considerations, traditions and circumstances to work with. Yes, soccer is a global game but the MLS should not always try to bend over backwards to please the “purists” who probably only root for foreign teams from the biggest leagues anyway.


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