MLS Moving Indoors Down The Road?

MLS Moving Indoors Down The Road?

  • Posted by Drew Epperley
  • On October 13, 2009
  • 8 Comments
  • Don Garber

Most of you probably at one time or another saw the reports yesterday that Don Garber and Major League Soccer are “looking into playing indoors to shift season schedule.” I waited until this morning to really gather my thoughts on this matter and because I just ended up with no time last night to get anything done (I had a good excuse I was seeing U2 play here in Dallas).

Some folks will probably like this news that the league is looking into the possibilities of switching their season schedule around to line up with the big leagues of the world. It lines the league up with better transfer possibilities and what not which is good.

The thing is as we all know switching to a more European calendar possesses far too many problems for teams in cold weather areas during winter. The majority of the league would have an issue with playing in the dead of winter if the league’s schedule lined up with Europe. Of course we all know what winters in Chicago, Toronto and New England are like. Let’s also not forget it gets pretty cold in Seattle and Kansas City too during that time.

So the league is looking at possibly playing indoors to combat this issue. Great, so does that mean the league is going to ask it’s owners to all spend the money on putting roofs or retractable roofs over their stadiums? What would that mean for New England and Seattle who play in NFL stadiums that are open-air? I doubt the league can just suggest they both add a roof to make FIFA happy here.

To me this is just the league and Don Garber trying to make FIFA president Sepp Blatter a little happier for a few weeks. Blatter has wanted MLS to switch to a European style calendar for years and he pretty much won’t be happy with the USSF and MLS until it happens I believe.

The league will however eventually get to this kind of calendar even though they may be wiser going to a calendar style more like in Mexico or some South American leagues.

So what do you make of Garber and the league saying they are looking at possibly playing indoors  down the road to get the league on a different calendar each season? Will it happen in the next 10 years? Or is this going to be a slow long-term switch? Or will it just never happen?

  • TCompton

    I don't see this ever happening. Ever.<br />
    <br />
    We will also never move to a Fall/Spring calender.<br />
    <br />
    Soccer IS growing in popularity, but it's fan base is not deep. For the majority of the nation, if there is a reason not to go to an MLS game (or a US National Team game for that matter), the general public will stay away. <br />
    <br />
    Add in cold weather and no tailgating, and you're going to find that a lot of the fans that enjoy the social aspect of the match decide to stay away.<br />
    <br />
    Additionally, putting MLS up against NFL, NCAA Football, and NHL is a recipe for disaster. There are way to many MLS fans whose loyalties span sport leagues. <br />
    <br />
    I just never see MLS ever reaching a fan base deep enough to account for fans that are distracted by other sports and conditions.<br />
    <br />
    Enjoy what we've got, but that's likely all we're going to get.

  • TCompton

    I don’t see this ever happening. Ever.

    We will also never move to a Fall/Spring calender.

    Soccer IS growing in popularity, but it’s fan base is not deep. For the majority of the nation, if there is a reason not to go to an MLS game (or a US National Team game for that matter), the general public will stay away.

    Add in cold weather and no tailgating, and you’re going to find that a lot of the fans that enjoy the social aspect of the match decide to stay away.

    Additionally, putting MLS up against NFL, NCAA Football, and NHL is a recipe for disaster. There are way to many MLS fans whose loyalties span sport leagues.

    I just never see MLS ever reaching a fan base deep enough to account for fans that are distracted by other sports and conditions.

    Enjoy what we’ve got, but that’s likely all we’re going to get.

  • Kevin

    Not to mention NBA, NCAA basketball, and the Winter Olympics every 4 years (that last one was kind of a joke, but I was running out of examples). This simply could NEVER work.

  • Joseph D'Hippol

    Blatter is a fat, isolated, corrupt fool. Garber has nothing to gain from this. The league has nothing to gain from this. Indoor soccer? That effectively died 10-plus years ago. IMLS (Indoor Major League Soccer) will effectively kill the sport as a viable professional entity in this country.<br />
    <br />
    All this just to suck up to a fat, corrupt bureaucrat? Do we want the World Cup *that* badly?

  • Kevin

    Not to mention NBA, NCAA basketball, and the Winter Olympics every 4 years (that last one was kind of a joke, but I was running out of examples). This simply could NEVER work.

  • Joseph D’Hippolito

    Blatter is a fat, isolated, corrupt fool. Garber has nothing to gain from this. The league has nothing to gain from this. Indoor soccer? That effectively died 10-plus years ago. IMLS (Indoor Major League Soccer) will effectively kill the sport as a viable professional entity in this country.

    All this just to suck up to a fat, corrupt bureaucrat? Do we want the World Cup *that* badly?

  • Mitch

    I don't get this. The following countries soccer season is similiar to the US &amp; Canada.<br />
    <br />
    Brazil, Argentina, Russia, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Japan, South Korea, Finland, among many others.<br />
    <br />
    Also a number of Northern Eurpean leagues are thinking of changing their season from winter to summer, due to the number of postponements, to improve the quality of play, and better conditions for spectators.

  • Mitch

    I don’t get this. The following countries soccer season is similiar to the US & Canada.

    Brazil, Argentina, Russia, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Japan, South Korea, Finland, among many others.

    Also a number of Northern Eurpean leagues are thinking of changing their season from winter to summer, due to the number of postponements, to improve the quality of play, and better conditions for spectators.