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MLS expansion

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On 04/02/2017 at 5:30 PM, kungfucious said:

troll or not, a guy's got a right to his opinion. we all do and should be allowed to voice that w/o fear or censor. that is what intelligence is.

nobody ever said u have to believe (or agree) to what other say on this internet thing (my posts included), but whether or not he is correct about it can only be judged by father time and be measured by popular opinion. 

the weird thing is that truths change over time and popular opinion can be called mob mentality.

sorry for another rant.  keep going mls, go to winnipeg (i have a feeling they would be killer).  make the next 10yrs count! 

There's a difference between voicing an unpopular opinion and being censored for it and being unnecessarily negative and looking to illicit a reaction in people. Trolling can potentially cause undue stress and mental harm to those who do not have the proper coping mechanisms, it's like a form of bullying or psychological abuse and shouldn't be tolerated. But you would know that if you were smarter and not such an ugly loser with no friends.

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1 hour ago, Mister215Guy said:

I don't have to explain that, do I? Yes, Bigsoccer banned me for badmouthing American soccer and the delusional Americans won't accept the fact that they suck and are bottom-feeders in the world. You should stop with the "shitposting" nonsense about me and although the cartoons are funny they're not really on topic. 

 

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19 hours ago, BringBackTheBlizzard said:

There was talk on a podcast recently about the Edmonton Oilers owners being quite keen on the idea of MLS, but I suspect the lack of an SSS and who would pay for one is the stumbling block.

Pretty sure CSA will block anyone trying to get into MLS with CPL starting.

As for this rapid expansion, they should be concern about diluting the talent which would lower the quality of play. As a hockey fan (who hates the NHL :P), talent dilution is very real and been reported and analysed every time the NHL expanded. MLS expanding this fast is a double-edge sword. Business-wise it make sense but it will hunt them on the quality on the pitch. Not saying they will go down to NASL-USL level of play but they will stall for sure.

Edited by Ansem

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Just like they blocked the Fury from getting into USL, as to be honest I would have thought was a cast iron certainty if somebody had suggested it on here a year ago? It's not worth getting into a huge argument over Edmonton to MLS as it's very unlikely to happen as it would be a longshot market even if it was an American one due to being on the small side for MLS, but the full repercussions of the recent changes on domestic player rules are still not clear, so I don't think a fourth Canadian team is completely impossible.

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Given the success of the Canadian MLS clubs, and the open-ended questions re CPL, I am skeptical that the CSA would block another entry into MLS if they met the league's requirements and put the wheels in motion. 

I have absolutely no desire to open a D1 vs D2 debate, but the reality is that we now have 3 very strong Canadian footy clubs - with academies, solid fan bases, and great stadiums - who play in the top league we can access.  In our pursuit of CPL, it would be silly to ignore the excellent progress we have made (in terms of club soccer) in this country in the last decade+ in an MLS context. 

Another large market moving to MLS might impact the specific plans for CPL, but I imagine the CSA would support that kind of quantum step in yet another large Canadian market - especially since that city's current footy club is not earmarked for entry in CPL anyway.  It would be different in FCEd was a lock as one of the original 6-8 CPL clubs, but given the club's seeming plan to ride the NASL as long as possible, I see no reason why CSA wouldn't want (or at least permit) the city to be part of the top US-based league, rather than the 2nd tier.  

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19 minutes ago, dyslexic nam said:

Given the success of the Canadian MLS clubs, and the open-ended questions re CPL, I am skeptical that the CSA would block another entry into MLS if they met the league's requirements and put the wheels in motion.

Hypothetically, if CPL is up and running, why would they allow new clubs to join MLS? What's in it for the CSA? If MLS stopped their BS and did what NASL just did with making Canadians domestics then I'd agree, otherwise, it's not in the CSA's interest nor CPL to give more markets to MLS with having little in return

23 minutes ago, dyslexic nam said:

I have absolutely no desire to open a D1 vs D2 debate, but the reality is that we now have 3 very strong Canadian footy clubs - with academies, solid fan bases, and great stadiums - who play in the top league we can access.  In our pursuit of CPL, it would be silly to ignore the excellent progress we have made (in terms of club soccer) in this country in the last decade+ in an MLS context. 

The markets, academies and infrastructure are incredible indeed. However, the bottom line is can count on 1 hand (sometimes 2 which is a miracle) the number of Canadians that starts in MLS. This status quo is a proven failure if you look at what's the CSA mandate and objective. Are we better than the 1986 or 2000 national team? Absolutely not.

This relationship with MLS goes both ways. We can't keep thinking about all the MLS brought to Canada only. Those 3 markets are among the most lucrative on the continent and they played a heavy hand in stabilizing the MLS and making it relevant worldwide. We brought huge benefits to MLS, sometime I argue we gave them more than they gave us.

27 minutes ago, dyslexic nam said:

Another large market moving to MLS might impact the specific plans for CPL, but I imagine the CSA would support that kind of quantum step in yet another large Canadian market - especially since that city's current footy club is not earmarked for entry in CPL anyway.  It would be different in FCEd was a lock as one of the original 6-8 CPL clubs, but given the club's seeming plan to ride the NASL as long as possible, I see no reason why CSA wouldn't want (or at least permit) the city to be part of the top US-based league, rather than the 2nd tier.  

CSA wouldn't be pushing for CPL if MLS brought the results it was suppose to bring us. The CSA itself finally sees it. Bringing a 4th major Canadian market to MLS would hurt CPL beyond belief. Sure, more fans, more exposure but at what price? That means less Canadians spots for our players and less minutes on an MLS team while keeping that market for a CPL team means more spots for our players to develop.

If I'm a CPL potential investor who's being told to lose money for a decade and the CSA refuse to guarantee the monopoly on Canada outside of the big 3 if for my league (which happens to be the domestic league), I'd be laughing harder than the Joker, take my money and leave the table. Because of CPL, I believe more franchise to MLS will not happen, even if MLS wanted a 4th franchise.

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51 minutes ago, BringBackTheBlizzard said:

Just like they blocked the Fury from getting into USL, as to be honest I would have thought was a cast iron certainty if somebody had suggested it on here a year ago?

The Fury was already in the USSF pyramid. They just moved them within that pyramid as the CSA had no other alternative for them. I'm talking a new Canadian team applying to a USSF league...not happeneing

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After today's news that FC Cincinnati drew around 100,000 viewers in the local TV market in addition to filling a 35,000 seat stadium, you can pretty much pencil them in as team 25 in MLS. For context, LA, NYCFC, Portland, Atlanta and Seattle are the only American teams in MLS who have hit 100,000 viewers on their local network this season.

The major concern Garber had about Cincinnati was the size of the TV market, but since they just beat the average viewership for the Cincinnati Reds on the same channel, that is no longer an issue.

Edited by harrycoyster

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FC Cincinatti for me is a no brainer.....their support is really strong...some of their games during the US Open Cup were insane....and it looks like they will be getting that new stadium if they are approved...

 

I think Phoenix and Sacramento are in..both have built in fan bases and stadium plans ready to roll....

 

The 4th spot is the one that's really interesting....

San Diego is always rumored....but things don't seem to be going as smooth as we thought

Nashville if they can get a stadium situation worked out...

St Louis is almost ground zero for soccer in the states...but they can never get their crap together enough to get a stadium..

I am a homer but I think San Antonio would be a great fit...they already have a stadium a good fan base in a strong soccer city....built in rivalries w/Houston and Dallas...

 

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44 minutes ago, mrstepp817 said:

FC Cincinatti for me is a no brainer.....their support is really strong...some of their games during the US Open Cup were insane....and it looks like they will be getting that new stadium if they are approved...

 

I think Phoenix and Sacramento are in..both have built in fan bases and stadium plans ready to roll....

 

The 4th spot is the one that's really interesting....

San Diego is always rumored....but things don't seem to be going as smooth as we thought

Nashville if they can get a stadium situation worked out...

St Louis is almost ground zero for soccer in the states...but they can never get their crap together enough to get a stadium..

I am a homer but I think San Antonio would be a great fit...they already have a stadium a good fan base in a strong soccer city....built in rivalries w/Houston and Dallas...

 

What about Tampa? They're going to have the stadium and there a massive market with soccer history.

Also hate to say it but MLS needs to avoid another Texas.

Edited by matty

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2 hours ago, mrstepp817 said:

FC Cincinatti for me is a no brainer.....their support is really strong...some of their games during the US Open Cup were insane....and it looks like they will be getting that new stadium if they are approved...

 

I dunno how strong this group is, but there is a NIMBY group in Cincy that's against a new stadium and want MLS to accept Nippert (not SSS)

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I can't imagine the MLS accepting a long term solution for FCC to play at Nippert....but they've developed a nice niche there....the only issue I can see is the late season overlap into the gridiron football season...I'd love to see FC Cincy build a SSS down on the river somewhere

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5 hours ago, matty said:

What about Tampa? They're going to have the stadium and there a massive market with soccer history.

Also hate to say it but MLS needs to avoid another Texas.

MLS also has to decide 3 teams in Texas or 3 in Florida....Tampa has already had a shot at MLS and failed (different time I know) but still...I think San Antonio is a market that could be big for MLS (only one other major team).....I do think proper marketing to the Mexican-American community in San Antonio (63% of the population) would result in attendance success...

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1 minute ago, mrstepp817 said:

MLS also has to decide 3 teams in Texas or 3 in Florida....Tampa has already had a shot at MLS and failed (different time I know) but still....

Texas vs. Flordia is a difficult one. But Tampa is a bigger market and it's going to have a stadium. Money's the issue there but Tampa does have a lot of cash in it (more than San Antonio I think)

9 minutes ago, mrstepp817 said:

....I do think proper marketing to the Mexican-American community in San Antonio (63% of the population) would result in attendance success...

I agree this would work but it takes a lot to get that community to care of MLS unless you're signing Mexican internationals. I actually am shocked El Paso has never been mentioned, city is small but has a large Latin community (80%) and is right across the border from Juárez which is a big city without a pro soccer team. If there was ever a market to use to pander to the Latin community it would be El Paso.

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10 minutes ago, matty said:

Texas vs. Flordia is a difficult one. But Tampa is a bigger market and it's going to have a stadium. Money's the issue there but Tampa does have a lot of cash in it (more than San Antonio I think)

I agree this would work but it takes a lot to get that community to care of MLS unless you're signing Mexican internationals. I actually am shocked El Paso has never been mentioned, city is small but has a large Latin community (80%) and is right across the border from Juárez which is a big city without a pro soccer team. If there was ever a market to use to pander to the Latin community it would be El Paso.

Juarez does have a fairly new Div. 2 in Mexico......but El Paso at least at one time made some rumblings about MLS...same ownership group that built their minor league baseball park downtown....(it's GORGEOUS by the way)...

San Antonio per capita has more wealth than El Paso, there's another large metro area in Austin about an hour north as well...so they have a much larger base than El Paso which is nearly totally isolated geographically...unless you are counting a bunch of people from Juarez crossing the border to watch an El Paso based team...I got a buddy who is a huge soccer guy who lives in El Paso...he is in the FC Juarez supporters grouo and went to Mexico City to watch USA-Mexico..gonna ask him what he thinks about Juarez folks coming across..

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1 minute ago, mrstepp817 said:

Juarez does have a fairly new Div. 2 in Mexico......but El Paso at least at one time made some rumblings about MLS...same ownership group that built their minor league baseball park downtown....(it's GORGEOUS by the way)...

San Antonio per capita has more wealth than El Paso, there's another large metro area in Austin about an hour north as well...so they have a much larger base than El Paso which is nearly totally isolated geographically...unless you are counting a bunch of people from Juarez crossing the border to watch an El Paso based team...I got a buddy who is a huge soccer guy who lives in El Paso...he is in the FC Juarez supporters grouo and went to Mexico City to watch USA-Mexico..gonna ask him what he thinks about Juarez folks coming across..

Did not realise they got a team there finally. I too heard some minor things out of there back in like 2012 but nothing of note.

I was thinking of Juarez supporters coming over. It likely wouldn't work now with Juarez having a D2 team, but a MLS team should be able to jump on a teamless border town where there is an interest in soccer.

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1 minute ago, matty said:

Did not realise they got a team there finally. I too heard some minor things out of there back in like 2012 but nothing of note.

I was thinking of Juarez supporters coming over. It likely wouldn't work now with Juarez having a D2 team, but a MLS team should be able to jump on a teamless border town where there is an interest in soccer.

Definite soccer interest.....I think some Juarez folks would come over but it would depend on pricing....a lot of really poor folks there....there is a sizeable El Paso contingent that crosses to watch most every Juarez game now....

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With the La Presse article I posted in other forums explaining the way their finance works, the real question is:

Why on earth would they stop as long as cities are ready to front over 150M+ to join?

I don't think they stop and they could well end up with some kind of CHL structure themselves with a "Memorial playoff scheme"

4 Division of 10=40? 4 Division of 12=48?...hell they could run 2 leagues of 20+ teams like MLB and have a "world series"

They don't stop until they have a much better TV contract that not only covers team's overall expenses better so they start earning profits (11/20 are running deficits) but also reduces their dependency on gates. Garber's getting pissed/upset at stadiums not being sold out is a huge contrast to Gary Bettman giggling when being told southern arena's are empty.

Expansion helps current owners making money while expanding the potential US media coverage which in turns could help land a much better TV deal. However, viewership being very bad really doesn't help them and it will be unsustainable until they figure it out

@whoever had said that the TV contract would triple: Omg...no way

Edited by Ansem

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Been meaning to respond to various arguments here, like the Cincinnati "no-brainer", and the need for more Texas and Florida. 

I too have been impressed by the Cincinnati USL success, fans, excitement in the city, and you'd think they'd work well from day one in MLS. But I feel this is somewhat missing the point, which is that you expand to enhance the entire league, the entire market and seek overall value, not just a local success story. You have to expand thinking about where you want to go, and since you want to go to various places for strategic reasons, you have to focus on those aims above all.

It has been demonstrated that success in MLS does not depend on previous teams doing well in a lower division. Atlanta was nothing to get excited about before. Neither was Orlando. Even Lynx were nothing spectacular in Toronto, however well supported (say the same or similar of other CDN teams). These were small bases and by no means were you going to go into those cities on the basis of the crowds supporting pre-MLS teams. The key was the ownership group, stadium ambitions, market ripeness, demography.

The other problem with Cincinnati: you have already met the Ohio market, and however much they love to compete with each other in that state, it means little for the rest of the league. In fact: the only city with two teams, New York, does not have the best of derby rivalries in the league, they are better when they are semi-regional (Cascadia, TFC-Impact, for those interesting us). 

In the end, MLS has to stay focused on what places might best benefit expansion, where not to repeat errors (I am worried about the new LA team in this respect), where markets are very finicky historically (Florida). They also have to give a big kick in the butt to markets that are underperforming, where stands are overly empty (TEXAS clubs, Red Bulls): maybe you move a franchise that is not meeting expectations before expanding the number of teams. 

I personally do not know what the best future MLS markets would be, as it depends on owners' vision, stadiums, location of venue, work with local supporter culture, local press, and here I simply do not know enough.

But if you had to ask me, I'd say:

-yes, you need another team in Florida, because Florida has many urban centres amongst the fastest growing and economically vibrant in the US: but not sure which one is ideal.

-A non-Sun Belt team to enhance a regional rivalry (St Louis to KC, Detroit to TFC, or Nashville, halfway between Atlanta and St. Louis and not far from Columbus).

-Screw Texas until those existing teams start doing better with their fan support.

-An emerging demography in a buoyant economy, which would put us, apart from Florida sites, in Raleigh or Charlotte, in the East; and Phoenix or Las Vegas in the West.

-And sure, if they are going to be so damn excited about it, Cincinnati, which does fulfill some of the above criteria.

Edited by Unnamed Trialist

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5 hours ago, Unnamed Trialist said:

1) The other problem with Cincinnati: you have already met the Ohio market, and however much they love to compete with each other in that state, it means little for the rest of the league. In fact: the only city with two teams, New York, does not have the best of derby rivalries in the league, they are better when they are semi-regional (Cascadia, TFC-Impact, for those interesting us). 

2) In the end, MLS has to stay focused on what places might best benefit expansion, where not to repeat errors (I am worried about the new LA team in this respect), where markets are very finicky historically (Florida). They also have to give a big kick in the butt to markets that are underperforming, where stands are overly empty (TEXAS clubs, Red Bulls): maybe you move a franchise that is not meeting expectations before expanding the number of teams. 

3) yes, you need another team in Florida, because Florida has many urban centres amongst the fastest growing and economically vibrant in the US: but not sure which one is ideal.

4) A non-Sun Belt team to enhance a regional rivalry (St Louis to KC, Detroit to TFC, or Nashville, halfway between Atlanta and St. Louis and not far from Columbus).

5) Screw Texas until those existing teams start doing better with their fan support.

1) I disagree with the "you already met the Ohio market" argument. Cincinnati is over 2 hours from Columbus if you take traffic into account. And from what I'm told the Ohio cities don't like each other all that much. It's akin to saying a CPL team in Edmonton fills the Alberta market.

2) The Red Bulls get shit because they have a 25,000+ seat stadium, but they sell fairly well. They have the ninth highest attendance in MLS this year and average more tickets sold per game than the Impact do. Texas on the other hand...

3) Where do you put it? I think Miami and Orlando is fine for this round of expansion. Tampa and Jacksonville don't have great histories with soccer and neither has the upside that Miami does.

4) One of Nashville or Detroit is a near certainty.

5) I agree. Getting more academies in the state that is athletic epicentre of the US would be great for American soccer but I don't see how they can let in San Antonio or Austin until they have sustained USL success.

Still think in the end it's: 24) Miami 25) Cincinnati 26) Sacramento 27) Phoenix 28) Nashville

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10 hours ago, harrycoyster said:

1) I disagree with the "you already met the Ohio market" argument. Cincinnati is over 2 hours from Columbus if you take traffic into account. And from what I'm told the Ohio cities don't like each other all that much. It's akin to saying a CPL team in Edmonton fills the Alberta market.

2) The Red Bulls get shit because they have a 25,000+ seat stadium, but they sell fairly well. They have the ninth highest attendance in MLS this year and average more tickets sold per game than the Impact do. Texas on the other hand...

3) Where do you put it? I think Miami and Orlando is fine for this round of expansion. Tampa and Jacksonville don't have great histories with soccer and neither has the upside that Miami does.

4) One of Nashville or Detroit is a near certainty.

5) I agree. Getting more academies in the state that is athletic epicentre of the US would be great for American soccer but I don't see how they can let in San Antonio or Austin until they have sustained USL success.

Still think in the end it's: 24) Miami 25) Cincinnati 26) Sacramento 27) Phoenix 28) Nashville

Thanks for the Red Bulls stat, I have seen too many games with empty seats in that stadium, though. Maybe they are out eating.

I don't mind Cincinnati since it will be successful. But that is, as you effectively confirm, just the rest of the MLS putting up with a state rivalry. And frankly no one cares outside of Ohio, why should we have to put up with that just because Cinci wants to rival Columbus? Anyways, two hours is nothing in North America distances.

As for Sacramento: another place the rest of the league has to put up with as a sure formula for mediocrity and boredom, just because they have a bunch of ambitious monied types. They don't deserve the NBA franchise and I can't understand how the league thinks going there meets an overall aim.

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