By FRANCO PANIZO
HANOVER, N.J. — Mike Petke is so unfazed by the latest batch of rumors surrounding his club that he did not immediately know what he was being asked about on Thursday.
Following the New York Red Bulls’ morning practice session, Petke was asked for comment on the SI.com report from Wednesday that said the club’s ownership group was open to selling the team. The second-year head coach initially needed clarification as to which report he was being questioned about, and responded only by saying that the rumors are not a hindrance to him or his players in their quest to reach the postseason.
“I didn’t give it a thought. I actually had to think about what you were talking about,” Petke told SBI. “I’m a coach, these are players. How accurate that report is? I have no clue. Not a clue.
“It’s not even a distraction. It’s not even a story for (the team) to talk about. Red Bull is a billion-dollar company. We’re one small part of that company and our job is do stuff on the field, nothing to do with business.”
Petke was then asked if any word had trickled down from within the organization about a possible sale, and he said the only thing he had heard in regards to the matter came from the outside.
“Only the rumors that you just brought up,” said Petke.
In the past 24 hours, the Red Bulls and MLS commissioner Don Garber have shot down the notion that the club’s owners are open to selling the franchise.
New York, currently sitting in fifth place in the Eastern Conference and in the midst of trying to lock down a postseason berth, has had its status in MLS has come into question in recent weeks and months due to them not signing a third Designated Player this summer and foregoing the decision to start up a USL Pro team next season.
What do you make of Petke’s comments? Not buying it? Or are you starting to think there is no truth to the club being up for sale?
Share your thoughts below.