Tuesday, January 08, 2008

2008 MLS scheduling problems

The 2008 MLS schedule is just a few weeks away from release, but there are a number of problems they need to overcome. Here are the scheduling issues as presented by Steve Davis:

- SuperLiga
- Concacaf Champions League
- US Open Cup
- 2008 Olympics
- ESPN2 Thursday night broadcasts
- World Cup Qualifying (the league will play on international dates)
- No national broadcasts from San Jose
- Stadium scheduling conflicts
- Beckham
- International friendly competitions

That's a lot to cram into a 31-week regular season and no doubt some items (US Open Cup) are going to get the short end of things. This will upset some people (like myself), but instead of going off on why it is more important to support say the oldest team cup competition in the US instead of booking a meaningless game against a pre-season EPL side in July, I will need to remember that MLS is a business and although they are doing much better these past 5-years, they still are not in the position to pass up easy money.

I'll also have to remind myself that when MLS players are called away for international duty and miss a number of important games down the stretch, that the league can't take those weeks off because of their contract with ESPN2 requiring a game. Plus, with a 30-game schedule, if MLS took more then one a weekend off, that would mean there would need to be more mid-week games and we all know what the attendance at those are like.

So I will withhold any anger I might feel when the schedule comes out (provided there is nothing really stupid like a couple weekends with light play early in the season only to cram more games in late) and remember that a number of these problems are the result of the league growing (SuperLiga, TV contract, Beckham).

Now let's see if I can live up to this resolution.

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Blogger ERic said...

You and me both.

4:56 PM  
Blogger Emmett said...

I'm wondering how much the Champions League will interfere with the season proper. It seems like most of the action over the summer will be other areas qualifying, with only two MLS teams needing to qualify.

On the Open Cup question, I think they need to do some serious overhaul of the competition (new sponsorship, serious prize money, TV) to make it relevant. Can't ask the MLS to hold up a second tier competition. Make the competition first tier.

6:07 PM  
Blogger Filip020169 said...

Hello y'all,

I need a bit of "tour guiding" from all of you, for I'm European (Belgian), I will be on a 2-week visit in New York from july 30 to august 12 this year, I'm a considerable soccerfan (aren't we all, over here... ;o) and one of my passions with the game (apart from my local team, of course) is "collecting" stadiums worldwide. I mean: I go and visit as many homegames(!) 'anyhow, anywhere' as possible; up till now I've visited some 40-odd soccergames in stadiums all over the world... from very small & tiny like RBC Roosendaal (anyone familiar with the Dutch league now has an ear-to-ear smile while reading this...) to the big standard "class A+" like Manchester United/ Old Trafford, FA Cup semifinals at (the óld) Wembley, Real Madrid in Bernabeu, Barçelona at Camp Nou, etc. - and some "exotic" like Fluminense at Maracanà stadium (Rio de Janeiro), the National Stadium Kathmandu (Nepal), Zenit St. Petersburg (RUS)...

…And here's the prize-winning question: what's to be expected during 'my' first two weeks in august in New York?? I mean: I know "the Cosmos" is no longer, and I found out that a team called 'the New York Red Bulls' are the pride of NYC now, and I suppose they play at Giants Stadium right?? But: any other team in (the) NYC (area)?! What leagues/ competitions/ play-offs/ ... presumably will be played at that time, en when will the dates of the (home-)games be known & made public?! Any other advice & feedback you people can give me on all of this??

Much obliged-


3:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

...Quite a 'funky' blog, this one...

12:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

^^ nice blog!! ^@^

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9:14 PM  

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