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Gothamite

North American Pro Soccer 2018

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10 hours ago, MJWalker45 said:

Since teams going down can literally buy another team's name to stay up, getting rid of this might be for the best. And with half of the Ascenso unable to afford a move up, why even try? this is some of the same issues that plagued the NASL. 

 

Yeah, I'm not sure that this tells us all that much about pro/rel working or not working in the US, since the practice in Mexico was so ripe for abuse.

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Are there really any USL/NASL teams ready to jump up to MLS level? Maybe Cincinnati, but their maybe (stadium) is the very thing currently keeping them out of the big league. Does pro/rel make that happen faster? Ditto Sacramento.

 

The only thing I could see happening with pro/rel is killing off for good franchises like Columbus that have a tough time drawing and staying competitive year over year.

 

I think MLS needs to stabilize its new franchises (Miami, Nashville, LAFC, Atlanta, Minnesota, Cincinnati/Sacramento) at least a decade before even thinking about revisiting pro/rel. And all of the USL franchises need to do better than practice, high school or DII college fields. Our soccer infrastructure isn't nearly close to being mature enough for teams going up and down.

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21 minutes ago, DG_Now said:

Are there really any USL/NASL teams ready to jump up to MLS level? Maybe Cincinnati, but their maybe (stadium) is the very thing currently keeping them out of the big league. Does pro/rel make that happen faster? Ditto Sacramento.

 

The only thing I could see happening with pro/rel is killing off for good franchises like Columbus that have a tough time drawing and staying competitive year over year.

 

I think MLS needs to stabilize its new franchises (Miami, Nashville, LAFC, Atlanta, Minnesota, Cincinnati/Sacramento) at least a decade before even thinking about revisiting pro/rel. And all of the USL franchises need to do better than practice, high school or DII college fields. Our soccer infrastructure isn't nearly close to being mature enough for teams going up and down.

I keep seeing this being brought up but they aren't worstgetting bodies in the seat, a fact that's even more amazing when bridges have been burnt with multiple groups over the last 3 years. 

 

As far as USL and NASL, they have to show that they can actually afford moving up on their own without the safety net that the expansion teams get if we're to see promotion and relegation. How do they bring that money in? I think it needs to be there BEFORE they publicly announce promotion and relegation. But seeing as people view soccer as a speculative sports adventure instead of a stable market for lining their pockets, some owners will not jump in prior to the announcements. This is why I can't see pro/rel happening anytime soon. 

 

 

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Unless MLS creates an "MLS 2" and has pro/rel within their own entity this isn't happening.

 

Can you imagine how pissed current owners would be? Minnesota pays $100 million but then you have a USL club (Let's say Louisville City FC because they had a great 2017) is just granted entry to MLS? Plus, to @MJWalker45's point, there's no guarantee these clubs could even afford to operate in the top division. 

 

Plus, with the CPL coming into the fold, and MLS having teams in both Canada and the USA, how would that work? Could USL have 1 club promoted and the CPL have 1 club promoted? Would 1 Canadian team go down for the CPL club coming up? (This is all under the assumption that the NASL won't be in play but how much more complicated would it be with 2 D2 leagues in the USA) 

 

Sorry....just don't see it. 

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I always knew the format of the EPL Pro/Rel system, but i came across this ESPN piece about Pro/Rel and how the K League in Korea does it, and that Australia's A-league is considering it as well.

 

http://www.espn.com/soccer/major-league-soccer/19/blog/post/3265312/as-mls-continues-expandingcould-a-form-of-pro-rel-become-necessary

 

Quote

A closed promotion-relegation system wouldn't be unprecedented in world soccer. In 2013, Korea's K League adopted a system, splitting into the K League Classic and the K League Challenge. Each year, the last-place finisher in the top division goes down while the Challenge champion goes up. Additionally, the team that finishes second-to-last in the Classic plays a home-and-home series with the second-place Challenge squad, the winner either staying in or moving up to the top flight. The format has been so successful that other leagues like Australia's A-League are considering adopting it.

 

Now im not saying this would work, but i also saw some format where MLS could expand to 30-32 teams and do a Top division of 20, and a bottom division of 10-12, but there would still be schedule crossover between the two leagues.  I cant find this link, but if i do I will post it.

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Having MLS be a closed, two-tier system could work out.  Would MLS2 be a Tier-1 league or like a Tier-1A where it doesn't step on USL's shoes.

 

I wouldn't mind seeing MLS split into MLS Pro or MLS Champions League and MLS Challenge League.  Still keeps them under the larger MLS umbrella and there's more motivation to want to win the Champions League overall.  plus splitting into 20 and 12 gives the lower league room for expansion for the overall league so if teams from the USL (Sacramento, Cincy, NC) wish to move up, they can jump into the overall MLS but be put in the lessor league to start to give them room to grow and learn the league.

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7 minutes ago, Pharos04 said:

Having MLS be a closed, two-tier system could work out.  Would MLS2 be a Tier-1 league or like a Tier-1A where it doesn't step on USL's shoes.

 

I wouldn't mind seeing MLS split into MLS Pro or MLS Champions League and MLS Challenge League.  Still keeps them under the larger MLS umbrella and there's more motivation to want to win the Champions League overall.  plus splitting into 20 and 12 gives the lower league room for expansion for the overall league so if teams from the USL (Sacramento, Cincy, NC) wish to move up, they can jump into the overall MLS but be put in the lessor league to start to give them room to grow and learn the league.

I think you would see the bigger squads sucked into MLS2 if they split the league, rather than just force the creation of a new set of 10 teams. They'll probably still have to pay an elevated entrance fee though. 

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8 minutes ago, Pharos04 said:

Having MLS be a closed, two-tier system could work out.  Would MLS2 be a Tier-1 league or like a Tier-1A where it doesn't step on USL's shoes.

 

I wouldn't mind seeing MLS split into MLS Pro or MLS Champions League and MLS Challenge League.  Still keeps them under the larger MLS umbrella and there's more motivation to want to win the Champions League overall.  plus splitting into 20 and 12 gives the lower league room for expansion for the overall league so if teams from the USL (Sacramento, Cincy, NC) wish to move up, they can jump into the overall MLS but be put in the lessor league to start to give them room to grow and learn the league.

Not to be that guy....because that's really not what I'm trying to be but what's the point? 

 

Those USL teams jumping over would still have to pay an MLS expansion fee (despite it being MLS 2 or whatever) and they'd still need to have an MLS compliant stadium. The pro/rel seems pointless to me in that scenario. 

 

Look, I get it, some people just want pro/rel because "that's what they do in Europe". I just don't see the point if it's all really just going to be MLS.

Just have a 30 team league then. 

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2 hours ago, mr.negative15 said:

Not to be that guy....because that's really not what I'm trying to be but what's the point? 

 

Those USL teams jumping over would still have to pay an MLS expansion fee (despite it being MLS 2 or whatever) and they'd still need to have an MLS compliant stadium. The pro/rel seems pointless to me in that scenario. 

 

Look, I get it, some people just want pro/rel because "that's what they do in Europe". I just don't see the point if it's all really just going to be MLS.

Just have a 30 team league then. 

I think this is the biggest issue. In every other nation that uses pro/rel the leagues don't lead that effort, the association does. US Soccer is not ready to do it and only two candidates wanted to expedite bringign it into existence. One of those mentioned guest promotion/relegation which is a different monster than normal pro/rel. 

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My only idea for Pro/Rel is  one-year 'play-up' for the second level champion.

 

For instance, let's say FC Cincinnati wins the USL (Tier 2) title. They get to play up in an open slot in MLS. At the end of the year, the play a home-and-home with the new Tier 2 champion. Winner goes to MLS, loser back to Tier 2. No other "MLS" team can drop. If FCC gets admitted as MLS team permanently, they're free from dropping and a new spot opens for the next champion.

 

Or, take another step, and have two teams 'play up'. The USL (Tier 2) champion jumps up automatically. And the worst of the two 'play up' teams drops down automatically. But then the best 'play up' team plays the USL Tier 2 #2 team in a home-and-home for who gets to stay up.

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Minor update on Sacramento Republic. I pretty much fully expected to lose my job with the recent ownership change over, but instead it worked out extremely well for me personally. 

 

One of the the people who left during the switch over was one of their long time merch guys who specialized in heat pressing all of their game kits and fan jerseys. I made a mention in passing to our head merchandise guy that I had quite a bit of experience doing that kind of stuff, and he asked if I would be interested in taking over that position. So, I'm now officially the uniform guy for Sacramento Republic. 

 

The best part? Sacramento Republic is releasing all new uniforms sometime in the next week, and they're doing the same basic thing most teams do by trying to keep it under wraps. I got to see the entire new set yesterday and will be working this weekend on getting them all heat pressed for the release party and the season. 

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2 hours ago, Bucfan56 said:

Minor update on Sacramento Republic. I pretty much fully expected to lose my job with the recent ownership change over, but instead it worked out extremely well for me personally. 

 

One of the the people who left during the switch over was one of their long time merch guys who specialized in heat pressing all of their game kits and fan jerseys. I made a mention in passing to our head merchandise guy that I had quite a bit of experience doing that kind of stuff, and he asked if I would be interested in taking over that position. So, I'm now officially the uniform guy for Sacramento Republic. 

 

The best part? Sacramento Republic is releasing all new uniforms sometime in the next week, and they're doing the same basic thing most teams do by trying to keep it under wraps. I got to see the entire new set yesterday and will be working this weekend on getting them all heat pressed for the release party and the season. 

Glad to see you sticking around and to actually see your personal work on the field as well.

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19 hours ago, Bucfan56 said:

Minor update on Sacramento Republic. I pretty much fully expected to lose my job with the recent ownership change over, but instead it worked out extremely well for me personally. 

 

One of the the people who left during the switch over was one of their long time merch guys who specialized in heat pressing all of their game kits and fan jerseys. I made a mention in passing to our head merchandise guy that I had quite a bit of experience doing that kind of stuff, and he asked if I would be interested in taking over that position. So, I'm now officially the uniform guy for Sacramento Republic. 

 

Congratulations - that’s fantastic!

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Champions League starts tomorrow. Can a MLS team finally win it this season? The draw hasn't been favourable for TFC. Should they advance past Colorado, they'll seemingly have to play Tigres, in a match-up of probably the best MLS and Liga MX teams.

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On 2/14/2018 at 1:27 PM, MJWalker45 said:

I think this is the biggest issue. In every other nation that uses pro/rel the leagues don't lead that effort, the association does. US Soccer is not ready to do it and only two candidates wanted to expedite bringign it into existence. One of those mentioned guest promotion/relegation which is a different monster than normal pro/rel. 

 

As I've said many times over the years, the only way I can see MLS going for pro/rel is as a strictly internal model; i.e. creating an MLS II which has pro/rel with MLS I, but both are under the MLS banner, revenue-sharing agreements, TV contracts, etc. and there are no outside clubs brought in or existing member clubs dropped.

 

That said, given the recent rate of MLS expansion, I wonder if this isn't exactly what MLS has in mind a few years down the road.

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On 1/18/2018 at 10:02 AM, AstroBull21 said:

Keep in mind that the USL is planning a D3 league starting in 2019 I think, so there's a strong possibility some teams will likely go down to the lower tier (possibly even the MLS 2 teams)

 

Current cities like Tulsa, Charleston, Colorado Springs, Reno, Raleigh could fit the bill of cities between 150k and 1mil in population.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USL_Division_III 

 

I can't envision Raleigh dropping from NASL to a D3 league in just two years time.  The MLS bid was a pipe dream and while it's pretty much dead, moving down just a few years after trying to move up seems unlikely.

 

On 1/26/2018 at 7:54 PM, Gothamite said:

Also hearing reports that he’s started negotiating with potential buyers in Columbus.  #SaveTheCrew might actually be happening. 

 

I really hope they can keep the team in Columbus.  The NHL now requires new incoming owners to make a 7 year minimum commitment to keep the team in its existing location; MLS should adopt a similar requirement.

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