Sounders Insider

Schmid stays, but Sounders ownership changes

This meeting is ongoing. This report will be updated as news unfolds and a full story separately after the event:

While promising changes on the field, Seattle Sounders FC opened its offseason with a restructuring of ownership.

Hollywood producer Joe Roth, the club’s primary owner since its entry into MLS in 2008, introduced longtime minority owner Adrian Hanauer as the new majority owner Thursday at the annual Alliance Council business meeting at the Paramount Theater in downtown Seattle.

The meeting was held four days after the Sounders’ seventh season ended in the Western Conference semifinal round at FC Dallas. And that result figured in opening statements by both Roth and Hanauer.

Roth called this his most torturous season as an owner. However, he said he believes coach Sigi Schmid produced one of his best coaching jobs this season, citing the club’s strong start and finish, sandwiching a midseason tumble among injuries and international duties.

"I actually think our coach did one of his best coaching jobs this year," Roth said. "Because I probably would have hanged myself."

Roth also said he believes the club needs to get "younger and faster," although apparently primarily among the role players surrounding the star, veteran core.

In brief remarks from the stage, Hanauer assured Sounders fans that the front office shares their pain at another season ending short of MLS Cup.

General manager Garth Lagerwey announced that coach Sigi Schmid will return for his eighth season with the club: “Let me put something to bed. Sigi is our coach. Sigi will be our coach. Sigi is my coach."

Other news:

Sounders will introduce new primary and third kits for 2016.

Club also promises an improved mobile app.

Also reminds that there will be new turf at CenturyLink Field in time for CCL match with Club Aperica, which will be part of the season-ticket package.

The Alliance, the vision of minority owner Drew Carey, exists to give fans a direct voice in the decision-making process of the team.

Carey was unable to attend the Thursday meeting, but sent video regrets shows on a screen behind the stage.