Thursday, December 16, 2010

Finally, it may come to an end

According to MLSR, there is a 50% chance that the Superliga competition could be going the way of the buffalo. In 2007, Don Garber and his MLS buddies conjured up this half-cocked eight team tournament in order to cash in on the USA/Mexico rivalary in international soccer. However, after a bright first year the tournament has slowly declined in both popularity and status for teams; and has definitely become thorn in the side of many teams.

With MLS in mid-season and the Mexican Premera in pre-season, was this every a good idea? Or, as I believe, was it just a way to make a quick buck by exploiting the fans? I believe those fans that were exploited by MLS during the tournament were the many Mexican immigrants or Mexican-American football fans that could more easily attend games in the USA to big Mexican clubs. A blatant example of this was in the inaugural year with LA Galaxy, Houston Dynamo and FC Dallas all competing in the competition. These three cities have some of the highest Mexican-American populations in the USA. DC United also competed, and DC is a heavily immigrant populated city. I can't see anything else, but exploitation here.

If this tournament has ended, as is rumored, then it will keep four teams from fight on two fronts; allowing them to focus on the MLS playoffs. How many points could Houston, Chicago, New England and Chivas obtained if they hadn't had to worry about Superliga matches from July until September. As you may recall none of those teams came close to making the MLS playoffs.

 Many people complain about MLS' involvement in the US Open Cup, but compared to Superliga USOC has a history and wasn't manufactured to make a quick buck. Ending this tournament is one of the best things MLS could do for the future of the league. This could be a good tournament in the pre-season, but it is absolutely worthless in the middle of the season.

Only one MLS team has won the competition, by the way, New England in 2009.

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