It has been quite some time since I went to an MLS soccer game – although the games in D.C. are well attended and the team was a recurring contender in the first years of the league. With the MLS season in full swing, let’s look at my favorite MLS logos / team names and explain why they are good brands and trademarks:

  • Chicago Fire: Unique team name that builds on the history of the great fire in Chicago in 1871.  And a cool logo with a distinctive letter “C” and an emblem that resembles a real fireman’s badge.
  • Columbus Crew: a unique name – not many teams are names after humans! The shield logo design is sleek and modern, again not a typical overall look for a sports team. The name evokes hard work and is appropriate for a smaller midwest city.  According to one site, the name was submitted by a fan as part of a contest. I also like how they brand themselves “The Crew”
  • New England Revolution: Great theme for a “New England” team using historical roots.  Nice logo that is playful and patriotic and distinctive.
  • Kansas City Wizards: An almost unique name (see horrible Washington Wizards name and logo) with a cool connection to the Wizard of Oz.  (Interesting note: the first year, they were known as the Wiz but had to change names due to…. a trademark dispute.)  The logo is rather boring however, little color and little imagination.
  • Some of the team names are quite boring: New York Red Bulls, Real Salt Lake, F.C. Dallas, Los Angeles Galaxy (I thought California was in a different galaxy!)

Lesson: Be different, be bold. Then your brand will stand out and can resonate with “fans.”

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