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Chicago politics has come to Indianapolis. After 10 years of work, the future of the Indy Eleven and its development of Eleven Park were uprooted when Mayor Joe Hogsett announced alone that the city of Indianapolis was going to move in a different direction in its pursuit of an MLS team.


Joe Hogsett Doesn’t Have the Brains or the Courage to Act Alone – WIBC 93.1 FM

Owner of Indy Eleven Ersal Ozdemir Responds – WIBC 93.1 FM

On May 1st, the city gave initial approval to move forward with the mayor’s new proposal to build a soccer stadium to attract an MLS expansion club. Today, Proposal 175 will be brought to the City/County Council sponsored by Vop Osili, who is going to do the mayor’s bidding to sponsor new tax district for a new stadium. Why we can’t utilize the old stadium? No one has an answer. Tony Katz likens Osili to Salvatore “Sal” Tessio in The Godfather.


Der Pate

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This is hardnosed Chicago style politics going on. Not only did Keystone Group and Indy Eleven owner Ersal Ozdemir work hard on getting the original deal done, so did members of the City-County Counsel. Hogsett’s announcement to go in a different direction was a surprise to Ozdemir and the City-County Counsel. Vop Osili is Hogsett’s guy to get a whole new deal done.

Tony Katz:

What it looks like from the side of Hogsett is they were working a deal with the Indy Eleven and then said, “Nope, nope, this girl’s prettier.” And then left the Indy Eleven. If you’re somebody doing deal with Indianapolis, would you ever trust the city again? That’s a question we’ve been asking from the very beginning. In order to create the new stadium, they have to create a new area that has new tax district… Who is going to bring the new deal? … Who is going to sponsor “the thing?” My point was whoever sponsors the thing is the one who has said “I will side with Joe Hogsett and I don’t care about the reputation of the city” And it turns out that someone is Vop Osili.

The City-County Counsel does not have to vote for this. They don’t have to be a part of this. They can say “Hey, maybe this isn’t the way we do things. Maybe this is the kind of stuff that’s just beneath us. This is the kind of stuff for Chicago. This isn’t who we are.”

Anthony Katz:

I’m not saying that the Indy Eleven has to be the team. I’m not saying there aren’t realities that we don’t know, and deals that can’t be made. I’m saying a deal like this is gross, and the damage done to Indianapolis is MASSIVE. So maybe we should not do that to Indianapolis.

Listen to the discussion in full here:

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