What’s The Future Of MLS
What next for MLS?
The big news right now is the introduction of FC Cincinnatti to MLS, while the future is unclear over Columbus Crew. With two teams being so close, what does this mean for the future of either of them? The population of Ohio could certainly share two teams, both New York and LA have more than one team so why not? This would also offer some genuine local rivalry in the game. Let’s hope that both teams can make it, and Austin gets a new team of its own, TX is more than able to support another team, and a town as crazy and fun as Austin needs it.
Local rivalry leads to another question that is constantly bubbling and rarely addressed – promotion and relegation. Bringing leagues together and allowing teams to be promoted offers a changing dynamic that gives teams something to play for at the end of the season adding extra excitement. The play-offs would still happen, and in fact there could be even more play-offs as seen this past week in England with league places being decided in a big day out for teams making it to the final of their respective division.
Is bringing players like Zlatan and Rooney to MLS good or bad for the league? Is the MLS a place where players come for a last big paycheck, or do we need players like this in the MLS to continue building the brand? Is MLS still an emerging league on the world stage? It’s certainly a commercial success domestically, but what is the benefit from a development of the game and league perspective? Does the rest of the world see the MLS attracting top players, or a final hurrah for those past their peak?