The letter below was written by D.C. United's Co-Managing Partners, Victor MacFarlane and Will Chang.
Dear D.C. United Fan,
As the season has come to a close, we want to share a few decisions and update you, our fans – the very best fans and supporters in major league sports.
“Win Championships and Serve the Community” is D.C. United’s mission statement. We strive everyday to achieve it. It does not mean that we will win championships every year, but we will be disappointed if we don’t - and will work that much harder to make sure it happens the following year. It also means that we will put on the field not only quality soccer players, but quality human beings, who represent you and us in the way we want to be represented.
The 2008 season was a disappointment. We had high hopes entering the season, but success was not achieved to our level of expectations. We did win the U.S. Open Cup, our 12th trophy, and the night of the championship game at our home stadium was exciting and a wonderful environment for the team and our fans.
(read the rest of the letter after the jump)
Except for the U.S. Open Cup, we had a down year on the field and there are a variety of reasons why we did not succeed. For some time now, we have looked at those reasons and spoken in depth with the individuals involved. As a result of that investigation, our historical success, their past performance and our belief in these individuals, we have made no changes to our team executives. Kevin Payne, Dave Kasper and Tommy Soehn will return. There are also no changes anticipated on the business side of the company.
However, we don’t want you to assume that those reasons will be excuses for our lack of success. Another repeat of last year’s performance on the pitch is not an acceptable outcome. And we don’t expect it again.
Accordingly, we are becoming more active in the overall management of D.C. United, and have added the title of Co-Executive Chairman for each of us. While day-to-day management will continue to reside in our executives, all “CEO” level executive decisions will be made by us. As part of our new role the business operations and team operations will report directly to us.
The business reorganization will ensure responsibility, accountability and focus. We are instituting enhanced management practices and have agreed upon clear performance metrics and expectations for all of the above named executives.
Kevin Payne remains president and is directly responsible for the business operations of D.C. United and as stated above will report directly to us. Kevin will also assist in the oversight of the team operations, provide his advice and be part of the decision-making process on player selection and other aspects of that area of our business. However, the primary responsibility and accountability will be with General Manager Dave Kasper, who will also report directly to us. Tommy remains the coach of the team.
We have excellent executives and, equally important, they are quality people. However, we are in a very competitive business, and we have high standards for ourselves. Our job is to ensure we achieve those standards by setting clear expectations and ensuring that we hold everyone accountable for these agreed upon goals and objectives. If these are not met to our satisfaction, we will take what ever action is necessary to achieve those goals.
We want to thank you for your commitment to the club. Your passion is unmatched.
Going into the future, we intend to update you regularly to share with you our thoughts on D.C. United and the decisions that we have made.
Victor MacFarlane and Will Chang