MLS, adidas Extend Partnership Through 2018

The new Adidas MLS soccer ball on display during the MLS SuperDraft at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, PA, on January 14, 2010.

Major League Soccer and adidas have extended their partnership agreement through 2018, according to a press release Monday.

The two have been partners since the first season of MLS back in 1996.

“The United States is a breeding ground for athletic talent and we need to ensure our homegrown athletes have viable opportunities to play soccer at the highest level,” said Patrik Nilsson, president of adidas America, in the release.  “We need to accelerate the model for soccer development in North America to attract and keep elite talent engaged and excited about professional opportunities in the sport.  We share a long-term vision with MLS to develop the game and are excited to foster the next generation of American soccer stars.”

MLS commissioner Don Garber also weighed in, adding “One of the major reasons Major League Soccer has become one of the top soccer leagues in the world is due to the support and commitment of adidas. They have a clear vision for the sport in North America, and they see MLS as a cornerstone of that vision.  Our extension with adidas is a major statement by an internationally respected brand that MLS is increasing in value and that our commitments to stadium construction, strategic expansion, player development and improvement in the overall quality of play are playing dividends.”

I find it difficult to see this as anything other than fantastic news for MLS.


Consider for a moment that the NFL, NHL and NBA are staring down the barrel of potential labor strife as their respective CBAs expire in the next two years.

With this deal, reportedly worth around $200 million, and the new collective bargaining agreement already in place, MLS arguably finds itself in a more stable position in terms of long term growth and labor peace than every other major sport in America.

What do you think? Excited about the continuation of the Generation Adidas program? Wondering why MLS extended a deal that had four years left on it? Chime in below.


23 thoughts on “MLS, adidas Extend Partnership Through 2018”

  1. Love the investment, but please, please, please do a better job with the team kits. The design templates have been poor and there are too few of them, making all the teams look the same. Adidas owns Reebok, how about letting teams pick between the two brands? Yes Reebok templates have been brutal lately too, but at least it would introduce some diversity.

  2. I like it but I think the kits need to be open to any company. I'm getting pretty sick and tired of every team looking the same in this league. I think kits should be open to the clubs to decide. Also, Nike is an American company how the hell is our league sponsored by Germans? Shouldn't Nike put more effort in expanding it's own local league?

    1. I'm with you man. I think the teams should make there own shirt deals with whatever company they want. Does the MLS also choose each team's sponsor?

      You don't need single entity to have revenue sharing.

      1. amen to both of you. you dont need single entity to have revenue sharing. i totally agree with that statement. also i agree shirt deals should fall with the individual club. MLS should start letting the reins loose on clubs to make their own decision as simple as kit sponsorship. i mean some kit deals can be worth more than this adidas deal. (i mean Nike's deal with Man U is worth over 303 million pounds, around 450 million dollars over its 13 year deal!!!) i know no brand would invest that much for a MLS kit deal but i think more serious money can be brought in with individual deals rather than a collective "one brand fits all" socialist MLS mindset. plus like Dan said, im getting tired of all our monotone clubs wear the exact same thing, the cookie cutter songs and cheers supporter groups sing is one thing but kits? and its been going on since 2004 i cant take 8 more years of this crap. imagine Nike's kit for seattle, and Umbro for Union. now those are real kits. i thought the courts ruled MLS a non monoploy company, this Adidas only deal sounds like a monopoly to me. but still i hate this deal, i dont care about generation adidas to me they havent produced anyone worth shit except for maybe altidore but its unlikely MLS will go back on this deal. after all its free money but lets hope come 2018 MLS will already have let go of their single entity training wheels and clubs can go back to being original again.

  3. "MLS arguably finds itself in a more sta ble posi tion in terms of long term growth and labor peace than every other major sport in America."

    Yeah, that's actually a pretty crazy thought. Odds seem pretty high that at least one of the NBA or NFL will have a work stoppage in the next 15 months. Thankfully MLS doesn't have to worry about that right now.

    Also, this extension focuses more on player development, which is great for the league and the national team. Considering the US is sending it's first ever U-20 squad composed of all professional players to a tournament in Peru this week, things are looking up all over the place.

  4. How does that work on the revenue side ?
    Is that $200 million a straight fee ? Does Addidas get anything from shirt/jersey sales with their name on it or just free advertising ?

    Either way I appreciate Addidas and their support, because MLS wouldn't have taken it if it weren't the best deal ( I hope ).

  5. I'm happy for the MLS and, unlike the other posters, I think this year's uniforms are fine. (I hated last year when they all had the tamponsame pattern).

    But, can we replace the jubilani with a predictable ball please? The jubilani may cause some goal keeper errors, but its unpredictability hurts attacking teams, especially on crosses, and the overall result is less goals.

  6. MLS fans: spend more on players so quality of play improves and more people become fans and give you more money in the future. Have you seen the early AM EPL ratings versus prime-time MLS ratings?


  7. Part of me wants to see the kits opened up to more brands, but then I remember what happened when Nike was involved with MLS... we had stupid team names like Clash, Burn, Fusion and Mutiny(those last two names being massive marketing blunders that surely had a hand in the eventual failure of the Florida clubs).

    Hopefully if they did let in Nike and Puma etc. they'd do a better job than what we saw in the 90s.

    1. i agrree Nike had some issues with names. but it wasnt only nike it was the MLS organization. in order for them to get a foothold on the american public about soccer league they had to americanize the crap out of soccer. the clock counted backwards, there were no ties instead a hockey style penalty shootout. conferences, a playoff, wild cards. unlimited subs. even timeouts. so in a sense Nike was doing MLS's bitter work in terms of branding. its common in america to have teams have crappy cartoony names. we still have them today. but look at Nike's kits today. most of them if not all of them surpass Adidas in style and inovation. but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. most casual soccer fans come from watching NFL, NBA, MLB,NHL which are used to these types of things and likes them. REAL soccer fans like originality and diverstiy.

  8. A good development. I'm happy with the uniforms overall. I would only wear my home town teams of course but would buy several others on looks alone.
    With the growth in the MLS markets the next couple Adidas should see a jump in revenue based on the deal.

    Good for MLS and Adidas makes a smart deal.

  9. “One of the major rea­sons Major League Soc­cer has become one of the top soc­cer leagues in the world is due to the sup­port and com­mit­ment of adi­das"

    does anyone find something incorrect and funny about this statement. we are ranked 88th on the ranking of world leagues. Garber you must be high because thats no where near even the top 20

  10. Who cares about those fake IFFHS rankings anyway. Did anybody see the top leagues listing? A bunch of Southamerican leagues were top 15 when people who know soccer know so well that there are only 2 leagues in South america worth to mention, the Brasileirao and the Argentinan league.

  11. i guess barcelona won't be putting a team in miami. one of the reasons they couldn't when they tried a year or however long it was back was because Barcelona was in a deal with Nike until 2014 and MLS was with Adidas. I doubt Barca will be changing to Adidas any time soon...

  12. It sounds great, but Adidas must scrape and get rid of the Jabulani abomination. They are forcefeeding this piece of crap ball on MLS and the Bundesliga and this is borderline criminal.
    Jabulani is the worst ball in human history. I played a pick up game w/ it about a month ago and the ball is horrendous!
    Say NO TO JABULANI! Adidas is killing the game with this monstrocity!


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