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MLS - 2018 Season

Couldn't see a specific thread for Major League Soccer so thought I'd write a few notes ahead of the new season which starts in about 3 weeks.

Being based here in Atlanta I've seen at very close hand how quickly Football can be a success stateside...Atlanta United ended their inaugural season in 2017 with an average crowd of 48,200 and twice broke the MLS attendance record with gates of 70,425 and then 71,874 on the last day of the regular season. Similar to the redevelopment of White Hart Lane the Mercedes-Benz stadium was built for both 'soccer' and NFL and has been a rousing success.

And rather than sit back on their laurels Atlanta have upped the anti this post season by breaking the MLS transfer record paying out $15 million to Independiente for an 18 year old midfielder. The days of bringing over superstars at the very tail-end of the careers is showing signs of being a thing of the past as more and more teams look to bring in promising youngsters from South America in particular.

From a personal perspective I was pleasantly surprised at the standard of competition, obviously comparison is difficult but in technical terms i'd put the better teams on a level par with the top half of the Championship back home

Its going to be a fascinating season,Los Angeles FC join the existing 22 teams in a league that is arguably getting stronger and stronger each year. Toronto will be looking to follow up winning it all last year and have already signed Dutch international van der Weil to bolster their ranks, Seattle and Portland as always will be there or thereabouts and LA Galaxy will be looking for a much better 2018 after last years disaster.

Interested to hear who you follow or what are your thoughts of MLS in general.

Cheers
Dan

Comments

  • Atlanta also got Darlington Nagbe, a very gifted player who is desperately inconsistent and goes missing unfortunately. Maybe Martino can get more out of him. He always seemed far too comfortable at Portland with his former college coach Caleb Porter.
  • DanDavis said:

    Couldn't see a specific thread for Major League Soccer so thought I'd write a few notes ahead of the new season which starts in about 3 weeks.

    Being based here in Atlanta I've seen at very close hand how quickly Football can be a success stateside...Atlanta United ended their inaugural season in 2017 with an average crowd of 48,200 and twice broke the MLS attendance record with gates of 70,425 and then 71,874 on the last day of the regular season. Similar to the redevelopment of White Hart Lane the Mercedes-Benz stadium was built for both 'soccer' and NFL and has been a rousing success.

    And rather than sit back on their laurels Atlanta have upped the anti this post season by breaking the MLS transfer record paying out $15 million to Independiente for an 18 year old midfielder. The days of bringing over superstars at the very tail-end of the careers is showing signs of being a thing of the past as more and more teams look to bring in promising youngsters from South America in particular.

    From a personal perspective I was pleasantly surprised at the standard of competition, obviously comparison is difficult but in technical terms i'd put the better teams on a level par with the top half of the Championship back home

    Its going to be a fascinating season,Los Angeles FC join the existing 22 teams in a league that is arguably getting stronger and stronger each year. Toronto will be looking to follow up winning it all last year and have already signed Dutch international van der Weil to bolster their ranks, Seattle and Portland as always will be there or thereabouts and LA Galaxy will be looking for a much better 2018 after last years disaster.

    Interested to hear who you follow or what are your thoughts of MLS in general.

    Cheers
    Dan

    I saw a Seattle Sounders game last summer and they had a huge crowd around 40,000 I think. The top tier at the Seahawks stadium wasn't open. I did a tour of the stadium the following day and the guide said that MLS wouldn't let them sell out the whole stadium, around 70,000 I think, which he said they probably could. The MLS think it's an unfair advantage for the Sounders. He said the only time they could sell it out was when Beckham was in town. I'm assuming it's the same for the Atlanta team. Seems an odd rule if true.

    Not sure I agree about the standard, the Sounders are one of the better teams but I thought it was lower Championship/League One standard at best, Clint Dempsey who's about 50 now was the stand out player by a country mile!

    I've always followed it with interest after going to the first ever game in NY in1996 between the NY MetroStars and the New England Revolution at Giants Stadium. After moving to Chicago started watching the Fire when they formed, Hristo Stoichkov played for them, he was a couple of stone overweight but blimey he had some skills. Saw BWP score a hat-trick a couple of years ago for the Red Bulls.
  • Thats interesting about the Seattle restricted capacity. Atlanta themselves made the decision to only open the entire stadium a few times each season (for the upcoming year they have announced 4 fixtures throughout the summer) but I believe that is more a supply and demand exercise and to have a 'full' 43 thousand for most games rather than a feeling half empty upper tier. Interestingly almost all of those 43 thousand are season ticket holders so if you want to go to the odd game you need to by on the resale market.
  • I get why the MLS gave expansion contracts to the likes of Orlando, Atlanta and Minnesota but why give another one to LA? Especially when Chivas who dispanded a few years back were hardly well supported.

    Who will support the new LA side and go to watch them? Surely if you're a football fan living in LA then you're already a galaxy fan?
  • I get why the MLS gave expansion contracts to the likes of Orlando, Atlanta and Minnesota but why give another one to LA? Especially when Chivas who dispanded a few years back were hardly well supported.

    Who will support the new LA side and go to watch them? Surely if you're a football fan living in LA then you're already a galaxy fan?

    Heading to LA next month and will see the classic LA vs LA derby....
  • Been to Orlando a few times so there my adopted MLS team. Hope they do well this year as wouldnt mind catching a game in October when were out there.
  • I get why the MLS gave expansion contracts to the likes of Orlando, Atlanta and Minnesota but why give another one to LA? Especially when Chivas who dispanded a few years back were hardly well supported.

    Who will support the new LA side and go to watch them? Surely if you're a football fan living in LA then you're already a galaxy fan?

    Guess they want similar Derbies to the ones you get over here... (i.e. Manchester and North London)

    You've already got the New York "rivalry" and guess that the new David Beckham Miami team will create another between them and Orlando in the sense of trying to create Liverpool v Man Utd etc.
  • I just find it bizarre but mainly on a supporter level.

    Where will LA get their support from?

    Galaxy fans changing team? Odd.
    Casual fan with no real allegiance? Also odd that you'd suddenly start going to football now.

    Where else?
  • Lots of americans don't have that mentality.

    Take a team in LA, fund them until they win, watch everyone become a fan.

    For everyone who loves the franchise in their city there is a whole world of people that only support winners.

    I was in Orlando when they made the NBA finals in 2009. The whole of central Florida was Magic crazy. The buildings were blue, the buses were covered in stars. It was like world cup fever on steroids. Except the number of people wearing Laker jerseys was unreal. Unless the city of Los Angeles had gone to Orlando on mass, everyone was a lakers fan at a time when the Lakers won a lot of championships. My brother in law got back from there in September and he said he didnt see any lakers jerseys but saw lots of Warriors jerseys. Which doesnt surprise me cos the lakers are now pants and the warriors are now top.


  • edited February 14
    Looks as though Cincinnati will be the next expansion team.

    Was hoping it'd be Sacramento Republic but I gather they've hit some financial problems with their bid.

    Went to see a Republic game a few years back and the crowd, although only about 10,000, were amazing.
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  • Macronate said:

    Looks as though Cincinnati will be the next expansion team.

    Was hoping it'd be Sacramento Republic but I gather they've hit some financial problems with their bid.

    Went to see a Republic game a few years back and the crowd, although only about 10,000, were amazing.

    Nashville have already been awarded a spot, and Miami too, so soon there will be 26 teams
  • Looking at the list of managers, I thought for a moment that our boss had moved to Canada to manage the Vancouver Whitecaps!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Robinson
  • Wonder when they'll stop as Promotion / Relegation will never be introduced will it?
  • I get why the MLS gave expansion contracts to the likes of Orlando, Atlanta and Minnesota but why give another one to LA? Especially when Chivas who dispanded a few years back were hardly well supported.

    Who will support the new LA side and go to watch them? Surely if you're a football fan living in LA then you're already a galaxy fan?

    Guess they want similar Derbies to the ones you get over here... (i.e. Manchester and North London)

    You've already got the New York "rivalry" and guess that the new David Beckham Miami team will create another between them and Orlando in the sense of trying to create Liverpool v Man Utd etc.
    Historically have local derbies ever been a major part of US sport?

    Baseball for example has the AL/NL split rather than a geographical split, so that the New York Yankees and Mets, for example, play in different leagues.
  • Looking at the list of managers, I thought for a moment that our boss had moved to Canada to manage the Vancouver Whitecaps!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Robinson

    He seems to have the same problems too. Decent players that try hard, but he can't make it work as a team.
  • I get why the MLS gave expansion contracts to the likes of Orlando, Atlanta and Minnesota but why give another one to LA? Especially when Chivas who dispanded a few years back were hardly well supported.

    Who will support the new LA side and go to watch them? Surely if you're a football fan living in LA then you're already a galaxy fan?

    Guess they want similar Derbies to the ones you get over here... (i.e. Manchester and North London)

    You've already got the New York "rivalry" and guess that the new David Beckham Miami team will create another between them and Orlando in the sense of trying to create Liverpool v Man Utd etc.
    Historically have local derbies ever been a major part of US sport?

    Baseball for example has the AL/NL split rather than a geographical split, so that the New York Yankees and Mets, for example, play in different leagues.
    True but do you really get Derbies outside of Football even here in England?

    I'm not a big fan but with Cricket is there quite a rivalry between Essex and Kent for example? - Or Rugby when any of the London sides face each other?
  • I get why the MLS gave expansion contracts to the likes of Orlando, Atlanta and Minnesota but why give another one to LA? Especially when Chivas who dispanded a few years back were hardly well supported.

    Who will support the new LA side and go to watch them? Surely if you're a football fan living in LA then you're already a galaxy fan?

    Guess they want similar Derbies to the ones you get over here... (i.e. Manchester and North London)

    You've already got the New York "rivalry" and guess that the new David Beckham Miami team will create another between them and Orlando in the sense of trying to create Liverpool v Man Utd etc.
    Historically have local derbies ever been a major part of US sport?

    Baseball for example has the AL/NL split rather than a geographical split, so that the New York Yankees and Mets, for example, play in different leagues.
    LA has the Lakers and Clippers in basketball and New york has the Knicks and Nets
  • sam3110 said:

    Macronate said:

    Looks as though Cincinnati will be the next expansion team.

    Was hoping it'd be Sacramento Republic but I gather they've hit some financial problems with their bid.

    Went to see a Republic game a few years back and the crowd, although only about 10,000, were amazing.

    Nashville have already been awarded a spot, and Miami too, so soon there will be 26 teams
    Yes, sorry meant after those 2.
  • I get why the MLS gave expansion contracts to the likes of Orlando, Atlanta and Minnesota but why give another one to LA? Especially when Chivas who dispanded a few years back were hardly well supported.

    Who will support the new LA side and go to watch them? Surely if you're a football fan living in LA then you're already a galaxy fan?

    Guess they want similar Derbies to the ones you get over here... (i.e. Manchester and North London)

    You've already got the New York "rivalry" and guess that the new David Beckham Miami team will create another between them and Orlando in the sense of trying to create Liverpool v Man Utd etc.
    Historically have local derbies ever been a major part of US sport?

    Baseball for example has the AL/NL split rather than a geographical split, so that the New York Yankees and Mets, for example, play in different leagues.
    True but do you really get Derbies outside of Football even here in England?

    I'm not a big fan but with Cricket is there quite a rivalry between Essex and Kent for example? - Or Rugby when any of the London sides face each other?
    There's certainly rivalry between the London rugby clubs, while in League the Hull vs Hull KR is probably the biggest
  • Love watching MLS. Good standard and much, much less ‘theatrics’ than NW Europe. Love watching Toronto - they would do well in the Championship
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  • Portland are my team, hoping the new manager works out - it’s a fun league that until the recent Toronto/Seattle dominance was unpredictable and threw up suprise title contenders every season.

    The standard of football in the Premier League may be miles better but by Christ is it boring - which of the mega funded big 5 will buy their way to the title this year zzzzzzz

    The Carl Robinson at Vancouve was a very good player, huge playing experience in the English game (50+ caps with Wales as well) & I remember seeing him at The Valley with Wolves & I am sure others. Decent manager who may well end up managing in our league system at some stage.
  • Am surprised that New York City havent done better out there to be honest.

    Or do the League rules stop them from spending the sort of money that Man City have done
  • Am surprised that New York City havent done better out there to be honest.

    Or do the League rules stop them from spending the sort of money that Man City have done

    Don't think they really spend much at all. And this year they have lost Pirlo to retirement and Harrison who went to Middlesbrough via Man city.
    Think they signed a couple of internationals from Swedish champs Malmo though.
  • Am surprised that New York City havent done better out there to be honest.

    Or do the League rules stop them from spending the sort of money that Man City have done

    I think the play-off system to decide the MLS Champions makes the definition of success very narrow. They have made the play offs in 2 of their 3 seasons - not bad for a new team.
  • Orlando v Atlanta became an instant derby game last season (I mean its only a 6 hour drive?!)

    Atlanta stirred it up by buying billboard space across from the Orlando stadium:
    http://www.wsbtv.com/news/local/atlanta-united-fans-apparently-reference-pulse-attack-ahead-of-game-in-orlando/565289376

    After the return fixture in Atlanta 2 of the Orlando supporters groups were banned from future matches after smashing up seats in the stadium, 'bless their hearts' as we say in these parts.
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