Via the Sports Economist, found a link to this article in the Wall Street Journal about the high demand for World Cup tickets for the USA [subscribers only]. I can’t read the article, but its safe to assume its a mainstream journalist just catching wind of the difficulties those of us who want to follow our team to Germany encountered, what, 2 months ago? I’m not sure why he ends his post with a dig at MLS.
Now, if MLS could find a way to bring a credible product to club soccer, we might really have something to cheer about.
What is a “credible product” to club soccer?
In my opinion, MLS has made great strides in the quality of the clubs they have. The number of owners is going up, it’s been a good proving ground for your talen (Bobby Convey, Demarcus Beasley, Clint Dempsey, Landon Donovan), and its getting stadiums built for its clubs.
You could argue that single-entity (the format used by practically every new sports league recently), multiple team ownership (AEG is divesting itself of teams), and the lack of a single table (umm, yeah our country spans a whole continent…) as somehow degrading the quality of the clubs but I think these arguments are specious.
The low salary cap and the small rosters, which limit a teams effectiveness in international competion and ability to deal with injuries, do more to hurt a club. I think MLS realizes this and are eager to fix them while staying viable and aiming for profitability.