Over the last few years, Major League Soccer has truly grown into a competitive league with talent, heart and spirit. Thanks to the likes of David Beckham and Thierry Henry, Europe has begun to take serious notice of the rising status of American soccerl. Therefore, speculation has continually grown with the rumors of some of the best stars of Europe wanting to be a part of the action.
In terms of the immediate future, one name that has recently been brought up is A.S. Roma’s Francesco Totti who has been linked to the LA Galaxy. The Italian sensation, who has been lighting it up in Serie A since 1992, is now 34 and may want to end his career in the lucrative MLS market. Supposedly, reports show that the Galaxy is willing to offer as much $20 million a season for the striker’s services.
In terms of the star power of MLS, this deal would be a massive boost. There would be a whole new market of rabid fans who would drool over the sight of the Galaxy with Beckham, Landon Donovan and Francesco Totti in their starting eleven. An increase in attendance, jersey sales and TV ratings would also ensue from the arrival of Totti.
However, there are those who express dismay over where MLS has been heading with the inclusion of international superstars. The idea of MLS as a platform where some of the best players want to finish their careers and earn more money worries supporters of the game in terms of the league’s reputation. Personally, I disagree with these concerns and believe that MLS has particularly benefitted from the designated player phenomenon. Beckham has laid down the groundwork which has convinced top talents of the world that MLS is the perfect league to show off their talent and garner massive support.
In terms of the Galaxy, the arrival of Totti would certainly help in terms of providing them with a top goal-scorer. Totti, despite his age, still had 15 goals and nine assists last year in Serie A so he would likely torch defenses in MLS. The Galaxy has lacked a consistent finisher besides Donavan as Juan Pablo Angel has proven to be inconsistent. The Galaxy are already one of the best teams in all of MLS and with Totti, they would be far and away the most dangerous team in all of America.
The quality of MLS is surging and if Totti is signed, it would continue to convince others that there is great potential in the U.S.A. One such player who has recently talked about the possibility of taking his talents across the Atlantic is Fernando Torres. After crushing the U.S. National team in front of a packed stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts, he admitted that playing in the States would be a great opportunity towards the end of his career. He remarked, “You never know. It’s a long time for that, I am only 27 so [in] five more years, who knows? I would like it, the chance,” he said. “I like the country and I would like to be a part of the improvement of the soccer.”
The development of MLS is moving faster than ever and some of the best in the world want to be a part of American soccer.