Superliga Loses Heavyweights but Gains Legitimacy
The draw for the second annual Superliga today was very revealing. SUM was pleased by the success of the first tournament, pleased enough to make the event a legitimate competition. Gone are Moriela placed in the initial tournament because they are owned by TV Azteca who held the Television rights in Mexico, the LA Galaxy and the Beckham circus as well as Club America, quite possibly the most popular football club in the Western Hemisphere. But instead the competition has legitimacy. MLS’ top four teams are in the event as are Mexico’s best. Once again the teams to beat will be the superior Mexican teams, but with the MLS in mid season, the upstart American league has an opportunity to score upsets during the Mexican preseason.
DC United looked poor in their first CONCACAF Champions Cup outing while Houston looked above average. This however cannot be judged as an accurate harbinger of how the two teams will do in Superliga. I am most intrigued by a possible Chivas USA vs CD Guadlajara matchup in the semi-finals or finals of the competition. This will no doubt be something many in the Chivas brass will not want to see but could be an unbelivable opportunity for the American club, a mere child compared to its Mexican sibling which is by any standard one of the most popular clubs in the world an opportunity to make waves.
Last year’s Superliga was the best football of the year played in the United States at any level. This year’s tournament is even more legitimate with the dumping of Moriela and the Galaxy and promises to give the newly formed CONCACAF Champions League a run for its money as the true Continental Championship in the hearts and minds of fans in both the United States and Mexico.