Hello from American Airlines Flight 21 from New York to LA. That's right, I'm on the internet, on a plane. Hooray for gogo inflight internet!
I've been following Don Garber's MLS State of the League address via Twitter from MLS Rumors and American Soccer News (and MLS Insider) which is pretty cool, but I haven't loved everything I've heard.
-30-match season for 2009, each of the 15 teams play the others home and away, with 2 extra matches... I assume "rivalry" matches
-Seattle Sounders FC has sold 18,000 season tickets...Wow!
-The two expansion teams for 2011 will be announced before the 2009 season begins, though Montreal has dropped out due to the global credit crunch. That leaves Atlanta, Miami, Portland, Ottawa, St. Louis, and Vancouver going for the two slots
-Teams 1-4 qualify for the Concacaf Champions Cup, 5-8 for Superliga
-The reserve division will be discontinued, with senior rosters increased, BUT,
-There will be no increase in the salary cap
Considering that two ownership groups are about to pump $80 million into the league coffers, the idea that the salary cap won't be increased is unbelievably short-sighted. More teams=more pressure to get better players into the league. Cutting developmental players (like Danny Cepero and his $12,900 salary) means that won't be able to afford teams more global talent, but instead will give MLS vets a well deserved raise ahead of the CBA expiration at the end of '09.
Oh, and one last thing:
The MLSNet.com MLS Cup page has Seth Stammler, the NY midfielder that had season-ending surgery before the playoffsas a possible starter. Um, no.
Will try to post an MLS Cup Preview tomorrow.
From somewhere over Cleveland, have a good night!