The MLS has done the hard yards. In one of the few places on earth where far too few were supposed to give a hoot about soccer, 20 years of labor has brought the sport, which the rest of the world has long been gaga over, to the verge of credibility in the US. After decades of mouthful upon mouthful of humble pie, North American soccer investors are under the impression their bet might just be about to pay off. Those who’ve toiled behind the US soccer bandwagon want to believe the sport’s professional circumstances at last bask beneath a fresh, positive light.
Delve beyond the rhetoric and the swagger and focus on what can be measured, weighed and accounted for and the MLS’s place within the scheme of things remains as precarious as ever. The MLS continues to cherry pick the data and information it uses to publically justify the value of the league and the projected growth of North American soccer. The inconvenient information it is all too happy to omit, consciously or otherwise, will in time undermine the worth and integrity of their brand.
Soccer here and everywhere else on the planet is first and foremost a business and as such is bound to the same economic influences as any other enterprise who exchanges goods and/or services for the coin of the realm. The continued portrayal of popular opinion as fact is a sure fire way to rack and ruin. The rapid fire growth of soccer in the region is a fairytale with a nightmare ending for North American soccer supporters.
This is where US professional soccer lives:
International soccer and the BIG 4 of US sports are two separate markets. Each is a behemoth within the sports entertainment industry and each controls their own destiny separate from the other. In contrast, the MLS has long been a minnow on both the domestic and international sports entertainment scene and continues to struggle in several critical areas when compared to its better supported antagonists. (more…)