After World Cup 2006, we observed a remarkable growth in the sport here in the United States. I am proud to have been associated with the EPL Talk Network since the fall of 2006, and to have been the founding writer of this website, MLS Talk. As someone who has been deeply passionate about my football since the early 1980s, Christopher Harris gave me an opportunity of the lifetime, something that has allowed me to transform almost three decades of passion into a career. I will forever be indebted to him and the EPL Talk Network.
When we launched the MLS Talk website and podcast in early 2007, the excitement about David Beckham’s signing in MLS was reaching a fever pitch. That year, we were able to cover the US National Team win its second consecutive CONCACAF Gold Cup, Mexican Football from a local vantage point, as well as MLS’ golden season, its best since the late 1990s, with Houston’s dynamic second straight title, Beckham, Blanco, Angel and all the rest. Yanks Abroad and the US U-20 team was also a focus of our coverage in 2007.
In 2008, we reached new heights, with increased MLS coverage, new writers, and an increased range of coverage. We began covering USL and College Soccer heavily, as well as having the honor to cover the USMNT in person for friendlies versus Mexico and England. We also covered the US U-23 teams Olympic qualifiers in Tampa, and spent a great deal of effort tracking our top youth national team prospects from Bradenton, across the globe.
During the summer of 2008, I received my personal greatest honor as a writer, when the Guardian, my favorite British newspaper listed my MLS Talk article on David Beckham’s troubles in Los Angeles, as their “favorite thing this week,” on the newspaper’s football page. That year, we also became the first blog exclusively covering American soccer to be listed on the UK’s, News Now service.
The following year brought increased traffic and focus to MLS Talk. We were able to add several talented and recognizable writers to our staff in addition to increasing our scope of coverage to include the woman’s game and in-depth analysis of finances and television ratings. From any perspective, 2009 was a banner year for MLS Talk.
The USMNT’s run in the Confederations Cup, CONCACAF news from other nations in the region, World Cup qualifying, and the growing influence and scope of Americans playing abroad became a big part of our focus in 2009. We also saw growing interest among non Latino fans in Mexican Football, and we covered that as well.