Author Topic: MLS - 2010 Season  (Read 7276 times)

Offline Steve_orino

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MLS - 2010 Season
« on: March 12, 2010, 01:31:42 AM »
http://soccernet.espn.go.com/news/story?id=754272&sec=mls&cc=5901

MLS players vote in favor of strike
AP - March 11, 2010

NEW YORK -- Major League Soccer players voted to strike if a new labor contract isn't agreed to before the first season opener on March 25.

The league's first collective bargaining agreement, a five-year deal, originally was set to run out Jan. 31 but was extended twice while negotiations continued. It expired Feb. 25 after the MLS Players Union refused another extension.

"Recent comments from players simply reflect the fact that the players are unified and, per the results of our strike vote, will not begin the new season if a new agreement with the league is not reached," union executive director Bob Foose said in a statement Thursday.

The union did not detail the strike authorization vote.

Negotiators for management and players met Tuesday and Wednesday in Washington, D.C., in talks convened by George H. Cohen, director of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.

Earlier Thursday, Toronto defender Nick Garcia was quoted by the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. as saying: "We're anticipating not having the season starting. ... As of now, for us, we're very far apart, even with the mediator there in D.C."

Unhappy with the single-entity structure that has seen the league negotiate all contracts since play began in 1996, players want greater free-agent rights and a higher percentage of guaranteed deals.

Player income averaged $147,945 at the start of last season, according to the union. But the median -- the point at which an equal amount make above and below -- was $88,000 for 323 players listed.

"We have an understanding with the union and the mediator that we will not publicly discuss what takes place during these bargaining sessions, so we were disappointed when we saw comment from a number of players that both characterized the status of the negotiations and discussed the possibility of a strike," MLS president Mark Abbott said before Foote's announcement.

"The meetings this week were productive and we scheduled a number of additional meetings," Abbott said. "The players' comments do not accurately reflect the proposals that we've made to address their concerns or the productive nature of the discussions we've had between MLS and the union."

MLS declined comment after Foote's statement, league spokesman Dan Courtemanche said.

"This is not a change in position by the union and should not be read to reflect in any way upon what has, or has not, occurred this week in the meetings with the mediator and the league," Foote said.

The threat of a strike comes as the Philadelphia Union, the league's 16th team, is set to start play at Seattle in the league opener. While Red Bull Arena in Harrison, N.J., is to open with an exhibition between New York and Brazil's Santos on March 20, a strike would postpone the first league match at the $200 million soccer-specific stadium, against Chicago on March 27.

Abbott said MLS ticket sales have not been hurt by the lack of an agreement.

"The league continues to function business as usual," he said.

Galaxy captain Landon Donovan, whose loan to Everton is scheduled to end after Saturday's game at Birmingham, may be able to extend his stay in the English Premier League if there's a strike.

"There's not a strike, so there's nothing to address at the moment. Landon is going to be returning after this game this weekend," Galaxy coach Bruce Arena said. "We're proceeding ahead like we do a couple of weeks before any season."

Galaxy midfielder David Beckham already is on loan to AC Milan through the end of the Serie A season in May.

It is not clear whether players signed to contracts with MLS would have the ability during a strike to sign with clubs in other countries without MLS approval. MLS players under consideration for the U.S. World Cup roster could be sent to foreign clubs for training.
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I had hoped to start this Thread with better news but it seems the season may not be started on time. 

Who's your favorite team?

If the season gets under-way, who do like to win it?

Offline Steve_orino

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2010, 01:38:00 AM »
Being here in Dallas, I keep up with the Club loosely.  Oddly, I'm able to get more news and website coverage on Fulham than I can FCD. 

Hopefully Cunningham can have another good year.  I wonder if Hodgson would come to Dallas if Hyndman can't get some results? ;)

Offline HatterDon

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2010, 04:32:23 AM »
This is so sad. This is so stupid.

I sort of follow Chicago because of McGod, and I enjoy Real Salt Lake's play. Here in the Alamo City, there's talk of a USLish franchise coming soon. I'm looking forward to that.

For every MLS match I see, I see about 40 EPL matches.


Offline Steve_orino

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2010, 09:48:37 PM »
I enjoy Real Salt Lake's play.

For every MLS match I see, I see about 40 EPL matches.

Wished Dallas would have held onto Dir until Kreis was ready to take over the squad.

Funny stat - I think that's pretty accurate for my football watching too.

At this point, it is kind of pointless to bring up the league but I'd really like to try to support and follow it.  The league has it's faults, what with the lack of true quality, odd season time, odd transfer rules, draft, and I'm not a fan of the playoff system but it's football and it's played 'relatively' close to home...
« Last Edit: March 13, 2010, 02:15:21 PM by Steve_orino »

Offline McBridefan1

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2010, 01:14:45 AM »
Let's go revs... I used to go to most of the rev's home games, when we had dempsey... I always loved that kid. Last couple of seasons I haven't been very much but I would love to start going again, might even sit with the crazy feckers behind the goal for shlts and giggles... we desperately need a soccer specific stadium, with around 20,000 seats, currently they get about 12 to 15 thousand people to an average game but it still seems empty when that many people are in a stadium that holds 60 some odd thousand... they shut down half the seats, it is depressing.

Offline FFCOutpostCommander

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2010, 03:53:18 AM »
Would be good for the game here to change the way players are treated. I used to follow the MetroStars early in the MLS but have not been to a match for years. It really does kill the atmosphere when you see 8-12,000 fans in a 60,000 plus stadium. I drove by the new Red Bulls soccer specific stadium in Harrison, NJ again today and it looks awesome. I'll give it another go because of the new grounds, but since they became the Red Bulls they have been terrible. Maybe the new ground will give them a fresh start. Have to laugh when everyone compares the MLS to anything Europe as it just doesn't come close. I have seen many international matches at Giants Stadium as well as some foreign club exhibition matches that were very exciting though. Hope they still host them at the new ground. Might be an outing for some of the NYC area FFC fans to meet at one of their events.


Logicalman

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2010, 11:57:15 AM »
I'm with you there Mr Don, rarely get enough interest to watch MLS any longer.

I agree, I have been spoilt, perhaps, with growing up in the UK, and I have to say the MLS is still an infant child compared to over there, but I also feel the structure of the MLS is a big hurdle to it being developed properly and garnering the real interest of Americans.

There is obviously a history that I am not party to, arriving on these shores after the MLS commenced, but I wonder if the suits than run it are aware they are not dealing with an American-borne game, and have not the same TV pulling power, and so cannot be treated like another NFL-type sport. There appears to be too much control in the head office when they should be simply directing the way things go, rather than the micro-management they seen to inflict on the sport.

As I said, I'm a relative newbie compared to many on this MB, so I stand to be very much corrected.

Offline finnster01

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2010, 12:46:30 PM »
If you are a newbie to MLS, Mr Logicalman, then I am a complete "rookie" to this.

I have only watched it on TV and to be perfectly honest, it does not get me interested. The biggest problem I have is that living in New York City there is just too much going on/competition for MLS to ever be really successful. You now have 2 NBA teams, 2 NFL teams, 2 Hockey teams, 2 Baseball teams, the Madison Square Garden for concerts, Broadway, etc.  ...all of which cost a small fortune to go watch but your pub next door always has an interesting game on TV, including the Prem.

So where are you going to get enough time to really "get into it" and go watch the game live if you live in the middle of a metropolitan area? It is not the same as when you grow up in a neighbourhood in London and it just becomes your team. England is really all about football, a tad rugby and a tad cricket, but really at the end of the day there is no competition for football.

Offline Steve_orino

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2010, 02:28:57 PM »
Finn, you touch on a problem for MLS, the sports-scene here in the States is so saturated that it will be tough/difficult for soccer to grab the attention of the average Yank.  I believe this is why they play from March to November...so it competes with baseball during the majority of the season and not the juggernaut that is the NFL.

L-man, I could be wrong, but I think that the League is micro-managed to a fault as they attempt to keep it from dissolving into the NASL.  As stated elsewhere, the NASL became the Big One too quickly as it was the New York Cosmos and everyone else.  Parity has been the desire of the League-suits and to an extent, it has worked; the League still exists after more than a decade.  That desire for parity seems to stifle creativity from the clubs though, which I think, would assist in bringing a better quality product to the pitch.


Offline FFCOutpostCommander

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2010, 03:18:29 PM »
Another point regarding the structure of American soccer is the protection of the MLS franchises. At the beginning the teams were to be protected so as to have a chance to take root regardless of their performance on the field. But they have failed to set a limit on poor performance. They have also now let several franchises fail and yet they still claim that to allow promotion and relegation would cause harm to the teams beyond any chance of recovery. Without any need to produce a good product the league has just degraded into another micro sport in a land with more professional games and leagues than anywhere else in the world. The suits controlling the MLS have taken out arguably the one element of the game that fuels the drama that keeps fans tuned into their teams year after year as the battle for position becomes a mater of life and death. Just think of the FA without promotion and relegation fights each year, yawn!

Offline YankeeJim

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2010, 05:18:24 PM »
Mr Commander,
I think you miss the fact that England with a quarter of the US population has somewhere near the same number of professional  teams (almost all football mind you). It might have more to do with the attention span of the average yank plus we are a mobile society. We are not born into a team like so many of the Redcoats are & even if we are we move to another city several times in our lives. Loyalities change.

I wonder if some team who never won the Premiership, say Fulham, was to take the silverwear, would there be Fulham kits worn all around the country? Whenever a new pointy ball team wins, one sees their jackets & jerseys wherever you go....until some other team replaces them. We must have too many Chelscum type fans...or is that just the nature of people?

Offline FFCOutpostCommander

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2010, 08:20:17 PM »
Notable point Jim, but not the one I was trying to make. I was speaking to the lack of attention from Yanks and Immigrant as well as other countries of our soccer leagues. I'm not 100% sure, but I can't think of a football/soccer league anywhere else in the world that does not have a system of promotion and relegation. With very little to loose, many teams have accepted mediocre performance as acceptable. The result is that they loose spectators to other leagues. I think that the excitement of gaining or loosing league status would put a lot more drama into the US game. I was ok with this policy in the beginning but in recent years, seeing the quality in the lower divisions throughout the US Open Cup, I think the time to change has come. You are right-on regarding American’s propensity to grab onto a winner, almost as much as they like to root for an underdog. Confused lot we are!
« Last Edit: March 13, 2010, 08:22:25 PM by FFCOutpostCommander »


Offline YankeeJim

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2010, 08:58:00 PM »
Indeed we are a confused lot. As to immigrants, I think at least at this point in our soccer lives, they are mostly hispanic and follow thier respecive squads from the home country. Here in LA, there is a hugh following for the Mexican league. In most of our cities Mexico plays a home game. They are playing a series of WC warmups here in the states & I'm sure will do quite well attendance wise.

I'd like to see MLS & the Mexican league merge. They could start out like baseball and schedule interleague play and some sort of play off system. I think a lot of the second tier could play with at least most of MLS & a relegation situation could come about. What makes the Premiership so grand is that all the teams have something to play for even if they aren't challenging for the top spot. The year of the great escape, dispite creating a lot of fear, generated a great deal of excitement. I remember watching the match that sent Norwich City down a couple of years ago & it was quite a sight to see their fans on their feet, wearing their colors, many with tears falling as they cheered their boys in defeat. I just can't see Galaxy fans doing that. Course, before anything can happen, you'd have to change the entire structure of MLS. Good luck cutting out the money boys & the union thugs.

Logicalman

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #13 on: March 14, 2010, 01:09:29 PM »
Outpost hit the nail on the head with his promotion/relegation theory.

This has been discussed on every US footie MB I have been on, and it is an argument that holds a lot of sway.
I agree that the MLS is being 'protected' to a degree by the micro-management, but, just perhaps, they should look at the other end of the spectrum here.
If the MLS was considered the Prem (comparison to the English league structure), then they could quite easily provide a lower league structure that engages the local fans more, that could then lead to a full implementation of the Promotion/Relegation type.

For example: If each State had it's own league, from which the winners were promoted into a play-off for, perhaps 4 positions of two 20 team Prem leagues (East/West), then there is always the opportunity for more local teams to become involved and carry their local support along with them.
Currently, all I see is the suits deciding what teams should play, and (even worse) where they should play due to their franchises.

Offline timmyg

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #14 on: March 14, 2010, 08:17:41 PM »
Currently, all I see is the suits deciding what teams should play, and (even worse) where they should play due to their franchises.

And that is Sports in America 101.

Quote from: FFCOutpostCommander
I'm not 100% sure, but I can't think of a football/soccer league anywhere else in the world that does not have a system of promotion and relegation.

Australia, Korea, Japan (sorta), and New Zealand do not. Plus I'm sure other really small nations don't either.


Offline HatterDon

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #15 on: March 14, 2010, 09:18:56 PM »
without strong -- or potentially strong -- franchises in New York City, Boston, Chicago, and Los Angeles, a sports league cannot survive. That's why there'll never be a promotion/relegation system in the MLS. Imagine if the Galaxy and NYRB were relegated to USL-1 -- Bye-bye television; bye-bye league.

Logicalman

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #16 on: March 15, 2010, 09:32:57 AM »
Currently, all I see is the suits deciding what teams should play, and (even worse) where they should play due to their franchises.

And that is Sports in America 101.

Quote from: FFCOutpostCommander
I'm not 100% sure, but I can't think of a football/soccer league anywhere else in the world that does not have a system of promotion and relegation.

Australia, Korea, Japan (sorta), and New Zealand do not. Plus I'm sure other really small nations don't either.

Nicely answered Mr T. Looks like the google pages will be sweat over for this then  :dft012:

Offline McBridefan1

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2010, 04:21:11 AM »
I don't know why people keep assuming soccer won't continue to grow in the US... the league has passed its infancy and is starting to crawl, once the market is open and really talented players are lured here and the money starts rolling in both here and from around the world. Then you will see soccer marketed to the extreme, and this country knows how to do one thing well and that is marketing... there is a lot of money to be made with soccer, obviated by the games being picked up by ESPN... granted it is incremental, but it is STILL growing.


Offline finnster01

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2010, 04:33:17 AM »
You have a point, but what I do not see is kids playing football/soccer in inner cities.

Here in Harlem, New York City, if you don't play basketball you are an idiot. There are no real leagues, no real teams. In fact, the only football is for old me, I play/walk in a league called Urban Soccer League in New York at very strange hours and venues, but I see no kids ever.

If I go out in the suburbs all kids are playing football/soccer. There may be some baby steps being taken, but it is a long way from taking it to the next level. And the other thing the US is pretty good at is not showing any patience so how is this sport going to ever take off here?

I'm not very optimistic to be honest mate

Logicalman

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Re: MLS - 2010 Season
« Reply #19 on: March 17, 2010, 08:55:47 AM »
MB1,
Have to go with Mr Finn here mate.
In the time I've been here football HAS grown, but it is generally spurred on by national successes in the main, because, as we all know, when any US team does well on the world stage, it's a media circus, but when one doesn't, they are quickly forgotten.
That is why it is important to football in the US for the USMNT to do well this year, and each time going forward, because I am afraid that without that success, things will stagnate.

The publicity surrounding Becks arrival was so hyped up, and now things haven't worked out so well, he is being derided. That causes problems down the road for other major football stars from around the world in joining the MLS. The main reason was down to the hype and Media circus (orchestrated by the MLS suits I might add), without the long-term outlook planned properly. We have to get past this idea of having sporting heroes as single people and push the sporting heroes as teams more.

Football will continue to grow in the US, and I hope to see some good leagues set up (outside of MLS control) before my mortal coil evades my daily grasp, but I do wish they would all get behind the USMNT more, and this threatened strike could be a breaker for the whole thing.