Hello Guest. We are upgrading the server's XenForo versions. This has to be done in stages.
1.5.18 ---> 1.5.23 ---> 2.0.0 ---> 2.0.12 ---> 2.1.0.
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Probably more the $$$$. Some (maybe most?) MLS clubs are in much better financial positions than clubs in South America. I bet Martinez is going to make significantly more money at Atlanta than he did at River Plate.
100% of MLS clubs are in a better financial position than 80% of first division, South American clubs, IMO.
MLS is closing in on a billion dollars a year in revenue. My guess is that once expansion gets to 28, they’ll surpass that (if not sooner).
I think right now, they are behind the big five in Europe and Brazil (and maybe China?). But a lot of bigger clubs, both in SA and Europe, get huge paychecks from continental competition, so there’s a tier of clubs who they are still behind financially. River Plate is probably ahead of 90% of MLS, but not Atlanta (apparently)
They pretty much had to get rid of two-leg rounds because of the two international windows. They could have the semi’s before the Nov window, with the finals after, but then you’ll have players leaving, playing two games elsewhere, and then coming back four days before the final.
Going earlier doesn’t really help, since you just move into the same issue between September and November windows. Certainly can’t go later without having possible terrible conditions in the north. They even moved up the end of the season a few weeks to sneak this in between.
The way to make it work is to have less teams make the playoffs (and have less matches), but then MLS is tossing money out the window. That’s never going to happen.
My guess is that, in the end, the “solution” will be moving to a fall-spring season
I’d also have to disagree that games will be less exciting. The reality is the two-legged rounds are watched about as often as a regular season match. Personally, I didn’t watch the first leg of either, and if MLS isn’t even getting me to tune in, then I’ll question just how “exciting” the product is.
I think making each match “win or go home” will do a lot for ratings. People don’t tune into march madness for the quality on the court.
Now if your main concern is getting the best team to win, then yeah this isn’t a good move. But that’s not really the goal of any domestic cup in the world (that’s what the league is for). I think it gives more value to the regular season since seeding will be massive (much in the same way it is in the NFL), which adds intrigue the whole way
I’m not excited for the change, but it makes sense from a MLS perspective
I get not wanting the playoffs getting interrupted by FIFA breaks, but basically MLS Cup will be decided on who gets hot for only four games.
I would have kept the two leg series with midweek games after the knockout round and conference semifinals. Admittedly two leg series takes away the home field advantage for the higher seed, I actually like the Liga MX rule where after 180 minutes if the series is tied, the higher seed advances. I just think you’re going to see a lot of cynical soccer with single elimination.
I really don’t think giving the top seed three weeks off is a good idea either. Would not be shocked to see a conference champion lose early next year because they were shaking off rust after the layoff.
It’s also rumored that the season will start in February in 2020 to accommodate the new format. They can’t do it this year because you can’t have an off-season of less than three months under the CBA.
I like this more than old format. Too many games in old format and too little time meant that teams couldn't sell tix. And breaking for FIFA kills any momentum the playoffs had. I like how if you are a lower seed, you don't get any of the match at home. Rewards winning a conference a lot more too.
Last year showed Jozy - not Gio - is/was the most important player on that team. Probably why they sold Gio and will wait and see on Jozy.
Boyd seems like an obvious Jozy replacement but of worse quality, so he could be more of a insurance policy if he doesn’t come back 100%. I can’t think the market for him is that great unless he comes out on fire next month