- Posted by Drew Epperley
- On September 2, 2010
- 4 Comments
I may get some negative comments from folks in New England and possibly down in Houston but across the board most folks will likely agree with the following: its time to end SuperLiga once and for all.
We know the tournament is just a cash grab for SUM, Major League Soccer and USSF’s marketing arm. It brings in four Mexican teams each year to give our league some international exposure and experience which is nice but it doesn’t do much for the average MLS fan.
In year one of the tournament it all made sense as the league hyped it nicely and got four good Mexican teams to play in it. Its helped create a nice little rivalry between Houston and Pachuca but outside of that I’d imagine that most of the league’s fans couldn’t tell you what SuperLiga even is.
I’ve made my issues known about this tournament for a while now and after this year’s edition I see no reason for it to continue. Its not due to the MLS clubs not winning it each year. Nor is it about the lack of success for MLS clubs in it, in fact its pretty split overall.
After four years the exposure to the common fan isn’t there. When you can’t even watch the game on a local channel in English then getting this tournament across to fans doesn’t happen. Nationally you can watch it on a Spanish channel and maybe FSC if you’re lucky. It may be broadcasted online but sometimes that isn’t good enough for some fans.
I don’t think I even need to go into the attendance of this tournament, which has dwindled over the years.
Can fans and even players get excited to win a trophy that literally doesn’t mean anything? Sure the extra cash incentive the players get is there but the fact that we’re getting mostly mid-level teams from both leagues doesn’t always produce an exciting tournament. But this tournament doesn’t mean the winner moves on to another tournament or even gets to do anything other than say they’re the SuperLiga champions of North America.
I could be wrong about this tournament and next year’s could be the best one yet if it is able to get some fresh faces like a New York, San Jose or Colorado. I just think its time for the league to refocus their international tournament participation to the Champions League and maybe revisit this kind of tournament when fans are actually interested.