MLS finally released their schedule for the 2008 season this week. Only a few weeks before the season starts. We keep hearing talk from the league chiefs about all their scheduling headaches and why they still have to play matches on FIFA International Dates. So, we fans get screwed and offered an inferior produce those matches. God forbid that ever happen in the UK. I know I, and most other MLS fans, have been voicing their concerns about this for years. Now, it’s nice to see media types take up the call this year.
I know MLS keeps claiming that it’s tough to schedule stadiums. Maybe it’s me but weren’t we told that wouldn’t be a problem when teams started getting their own stadiums…guess that’s changed now.
MLS plays a 30 game season plus a couple Open Cup matches, Champs Cup and some ‘invented’ competitions.
EPL clubs play a 38 game season plus a much larger FA Cup and League Cup competition. Add in Euro matches and you have a much busier schedule. But of course, they have their own stadiums.
Personally, I don’t buy the leagues arguement. It all use to sound good but I’m sure theres more to this which they aren’t telling us. After all, close to half the teams now have their own stadium but the problem hasn’t imporved at all. In fact, from my point of view the problem hasn’t improved at all. However, they were able to adjust create a schedule for LA last season which got LA to ever MLS team after he arrived. Shows where their priorities are.
This bothers me. We all know MLS isn’t the EPL, La Liga or Serie A. We know that we MLS fans aren’t getting the best league in the world. However, to knowingly offer matches as part of season tickets which everyone knows before had won’t include the best players doesn’t help that fact.
My honest feeling is that the only way to end matches on FIFA Dates is for fans to force the action. I don’t know how feasible a fan action is but that’s what we need to do. However, for the league to change, fans need to hit them where in counts, in the pocket. I wonder how possible it would be for MLS fans to stage a strike? Would enough be willing to not use tickets for a specific FIFA Date match? Would enough be willing to not watch the ESPN2, FSC or local broadcasts of match on that weekend? Can we do it? Should we do it? If we can, will MLS/SUM/ESPN/FSC notice?