MLS Needs to Focus On DC United and Revolution, Not Second New York Team

Just as my fellow MLS Talk writer Robert Hay has listened to Don Garber’s press conference two weeks before the MLS Cup Final at the Home Depot Center, I too listened to that press conference and I have to say that every time the commissioner talks about the league I feel that he has done a solid job running it.

But once again when it comes to the stadium issue for the supposed second New York City side that could be in either Brooklyn or Queens (regardless if it is the Cosmos or one of those three different groups that was with Garber for the USA/Ecuador game at Red Bull Arena), I was surprised to hear that he has a dedicated man in the league office for this tough task.

I was wondering if Mr. Garber ever gave this much extra effort to help out two charter members of the league that is also having a bit of a problem getting their own stadium in two areas of the country along the Atlantic coast.

I mean who doesn’t love to hear about the Raccoon living in the penthouse that is the decrepit and slowly falling apart Robert F. Kennedy Stadium in our nation’s capital when chunks of concrete continues to fall from the upper deck.

While I understand that it’s been tough sledding for Don Garber talking turkey with the politicians from the District of Colombia, it doesn’t mean you have to give up on the situation. You all remember my article on what Prince George’s County in Maryland did when they pulled a 180 from yes to no. That was a disgusting thing they did to the supporters of that club.

Or what about the situation with the club that is owned by the Kraft family and continues to use their NFL Stadium as a home when their MLS side desperately needs a better identity and a better home somewhere near or around the city of Boston. I guess they aren’t that much of a priority either.

For the supporters of DC United and the New England Revolution, they should be in an uproar right now because it looks like Garber has lost the plot. While it would be a major notch on the belt to actually build a soccer stadium from within the five boroughs of New York City, the fight to fix this issue for the game in the USA is not finished.

This obsession right now to build a soccer stadium in New York City should be third on the list and the plight for both DC United and the Revolution should be first and second depending on who is able to get that feat accomplished.

Yes I know it took over fourteen years for this franchise knows as the MetroStars/New York Red Bulls to get rid of all the governmental red tape and finally build Red Bull Arena. But for this league to be strong from top to bottom, all charter members deserve to be helped first before you go and tackle this type of project.

22 thoughts on “MLS Needs to Focus On DC United and Revolution, Not Second New York Team”

  1. Good article Daniel, but MLS can focus on
    both…………………..Of all the people that are not for
    moving teams, I am at the top of the list. The Don is starting to
    sound like Stern. Team can’t survive in this stadium, needs better,
    etc. Where have I heard that before, oh yeah, the NBA holding my
    city hostage. That being said its fans are the ones that are
    demanding a new stadium too, no ? Am I wrong? If not, be careful
    what you wish for…….Lastly, you can understand the league
    wanted a NY team he is talking $75 million versus probably $40
    million somewhere else, meaning way bigger upside financially
    when/if the teams succeeds.

    1. Yeah, having a situation in NY where the league actually got on the
      radar screen even slightly better than now could only help DC, not
      hurt it. In the case of RFK stadium, it’s extremely expensive to
      operate, it’s in bad condition and was ignored by its owner (the
      city) for way too long to think that a fix is workable, and it’s
      one of those “Big Round O” stadiums that were jack-of-all-trades,
      master-of-none to begin with. Teams do throw around “need” way too
      superfluously in order to mask a desire to make more money than
      they already are, but United doesn’t really fit in that category.

  2. As a soccer fan in Central MA, I feel the Revolution really don’t
    have a commanding presence and perhaps some of this is due to the
    stadium issues. I follow the Premier League much more than MLS, but
    if the Revolution had an identity of their own (instead of playing
    second fiddle to the Patriots) I might be more inclined towards
    following a side on this side of the Atlantic.

    1. The Revs have problems, but you don’t get the irony that you
      complain about them not having more of a presence and identity in
      Boston when you watch soccer half a world away that has nothing to
      do with New England? Does the “English” Premier League have some
      sort of presence and identity in Central MA? Did Man U move to some
      hick town in Mass when I wasn’t looking? Did Arsenal move to
      Springfield Did you start speaking with funny English accents and
      putting up pictures up of the Queen? Dude, you are the problem! You
      are trying to be something you are not. BTW, I am not knocking fans
      who root for both MLS and foreign clubs., We all do. Just the
      Eurosnobs who kill soccer in this country. Nobody wants your
      support, guy. Keep living the lie.

      1. Why should he be forced to follow a league that continues to
        alienate the biggest group of soccer fans in this country. People
        dont want this Americanized version of soccer, if they did MLS
        would be 10x larger. Conferences, unbalanced schedules, lack of
        pro/rel and 2.6 million dollar salary caps with 5% increases are
        the problem, not people who choose to find a better product. You
        can keep going after “Eurosnobs” all you want but you will have to
        come to the realization that if US soccer is going to grow at an
        accelerated rate, they will need to attract the soccer fans in this
        country who look overseas not NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL fans. Your typical
        American sports fan has no interest in this league, no matter how
        much Garber wishes to push conferences, salary caps, closed leagues
        and unbalanced schedules down their throats. Fox just bought World
        Cup rights for 1 billion dollars. That is 990 million more than MLS
        last contract. Soccer is not the reason MLS continues to stagnate.
        The reason is this closed league system which puts owners
        pocketbooks before actual soccer.

        1. Really? How would we have enough teams for a league without a
          salary cap? You’d have 3 or 4 teams with good players, and a bunch
          of teams that did nothing but lose until they folded. And
          promotion/relegation? Relegation to where? If we don’t have enough
          teams in MLS with decent stadiums, where are we going to find teams
          to promote? And how does a team like the Fire keep going if they
          get relegated? This isn’t England, where Nottingham Forrest has a
          history with generations of fans to keep them going in the
          Championship League. As for the unbalanced schedules, again, this
          game is “Americanized” because it’s in America. There’s a big
          difference between Newcastle taking a 6 hour drive / 2 hour flight
          to Swansea, and east coast and west coast teams flying across
          several timezones. Whining that the American game isn’t exactly
          like Europe, when America has challenges that Europe doesn’t have
          is ridiculous.

          1. This “Amercanized for America” crap is getting old. It’s contrived
            and utterly inorganic. Baseball didn’t have playoffs when there
            were only ten teams in each league. You won the pennant and you
            played in the World Series. PERIOD! Playoffs, divisions and
            wildcards were added for a reason (namely, more than 20 teams) not
            because “that’s how ‘Mercans does it”. Baseball doesn’t have
            pro/rel because it has a farm system to spread the game to even the
            smallest of cities (while football and basketball have thriving
            college leagues that feed into them). MLS can’t do that either due
            to their moronic – and borderline illegal – contract system (plus
            US men’s college soccer is a joke). Now, I don’t mind having
            playoffs and such, but there needs to be some reason behind it. I
            don’t mind not having pro/rel if there is another system to
            properly spread the game nationwide. I don’t mind an unbalanced
            schedule if it makes sense. MLS has yet to meet any of those
            criteria though. There is no reason to their playoff system, no
            effective attempt to spread the game and no logic behind the
            current scheduling (or maybe there is, we don’t really know…
            which is in itself half-assery of the highest sort).

        2. Why should mls copy what the world is doing. The us is much
          different than Europe. Unbalanced schedules are needed due to the
          distances traveled between teams that european teams dont have to
          deal with. I love the idea of a salary cap and think it helps
          competition. Its boring to watch the epl and la liga knowing who
          the top teams will be every year. Also to sat NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL
          fans dont cross over is wrong as i love the NFL, MLB and MLS. Ive
          even got friends who are soccer fans from other countries that grew
          to love american sports. Honestly Don Garber has done a great job
          since he got in expanding the league and growing the fanbase. Also
          fox only paid around 425 million for the english rights to the
          world cup not 1 billion.

        3. @ron…my god you are dumb! With out getting in specifics, MLS can
          NOT have pro/rel or uncapped salaries. The eurosnobs in this
          country ARE the minority. Last time i checked the league seems to
          be doing just fine fan wise in…I dont know…Seattle, LA,
          Portland, Philly, Toronto, Vancouver, Houston(new stadium), Salt
          Lake, KC and many other markets as well. This is a joke anymore to
          hear about pro/reg. If you honestly only watch EPL and call your
          self a soccer fan you cant be serious. All you euro lovers can have
          your early Saturday and Sunday games while I’ll go watch my team
          live week in and week out with much more excitement and passion
          than you can ever have. USA USA USA USA!

  3. This came off as whining. Garber has already proven he knows how to
    get things done. If he concentrates on NYC2, there is a reason for
    it…Maybe a better TV deal which makes money for everyone and sees
    the salary caps go way up…and while the Rev fans complain, the
    team is in good financial shape because they own Foxboro….DC
    United is another matter and he is addressing the issues publicly
    and privately…So what it the problem?????

  4. I have no problem with The Don bringing someone on with the sole
    purpose of finding a stadium in NYC. It aint easy to do. Perhaps is
    DCU and Revs did the same they might get moving in the right
    direction. It is the teams responsibility to better their own

  5. My biggest problem with Garber right now (and I say this in full
    knowledge that is the biggest reason the league is still around
    today) is that he has let some of these teams go by the wayside in
    favor of an area that hasn’t even been awarded an expansion yet.
    Not only are four teams in danger of dropping off or moving (DCU,
    Columbus, NE, and Chivas), but there are also other ownership
    groups–groups Garber has had talks with and marked as possible
    expansion areas–who don’t have a dedicated MLS official working on
    stadium solutions. Granted, Garber serves the owners, and these
    particular owners have proven pretty apathetic of late, but I’m
    afraid that we’re on the verge of a franchise shuffle the likes of
    which we haven’t seen since the original NASL.

  6. I’m sure the folks in Orlando would love for the focus to be on
    them, the folks in St. Louis ditto, and the folks in Minnesota, Las
    Vegas, etc. I, of course, want the focus to be on bringing the
    Chiefs back in Atlanta. But I can understand their determination to
    get the Cosmos up and running (don’t believe the smokescreen about
    “other NY ownership groups”). They want the Cosmos, because it
    would be a world-wide marketing phenom. As it should be. They were
    a legendary team, on a global scale. If they do it, they should
    re-brand the Red Bulls as a New Jersey team. Anyways, ATL, ASAP.
    Atlanta Chiefs FC.

  7. For me, I think our soccer program is at a fork in the road. Between having a USMNT coach who obviously takes issue with the pro game in this country and a league that doesn’t seem to care what Klinsmann thinks (see staying at a 34 game schedule), it seems a chasm is going to grow here pretty soon.

    To me, Sunil Gulati does not have the leadership qualities to bring the two sides together. I see this separation only getting wider as Don Garber decides to do what’s right for the Anschutz’s and Kraft’s. I tend to think Klinsmann is more in the right on this debate, and what you need is someone at the top who is going to lead, not sit silently while these two institutions bicker. Neither side will benefit from this little stalemate.

    1. It is not the number of games, Earl. It is the length of the
      season. Most teams in Europe plays no more than 40 games per
      season; but their offseason is no longer than one month. 34 games
      with playoffs is ok. The regular season has exactly the same amount
      of games as the Mexican league.

    2. This is why US/Canadian soccer should be the ones running the show
      not MLS. US/Canadian soccer should be telling MLS, NASL, and USL
      what to do not the other way around.

  8. The perfect place for a new stadium in DC is…the RFK parking lot.
    DC gov needs to hand over the land (recognizing the economic
    benefits of keeping the team) and help with financing by recouping
    some of the ungodly sum they paid for the Nationals stadium. How
    about a small tax on events held in stadiums larger than 40k? Then
    funnel that money to DC United to make the situation a bit fairer.
    There’s your solution.

  9. Hey yall, Don Garber here. Even though I could give a rat’s ass
    about yer opinions, my people tell me I gotta pretend like I care,
    so they set up a thingy on the Twitter we’re callin’ the
    uh…Supporters Summit, or Smackdown, or something. Ya see, we set
    this dealio up so you folks can vent and whine about wantin’ a real
    league with a real schedule and a real title race and blah blah
    blah. Then I can get back to what I was doin’ with my whole
    “American fans wants playoffs and rivalries and lopsided schedules”
    tangent. See, if we pretend like we care, then maybe yall will
    finally STFU, know what I’m sayin? So ya can read all about the uh,
    Summit Smackdown thing on the News page at Just
    don’t try to comment on news postings anymore, cause we removed the
    comments section. (Cause we really don’t want to know what you

  10. The Don knows where to focus his time and priorities. 1: NYC2 is
    the highest priority because it would electrify the media capital
    of the world and has the potential to raise the league’s profile
    into the stratosphere. 2. Rebrand Columbus Crew. The beefcake crest
    has gotta go. That will help a lot over there with the local
    support. It’s second in priority only because it’s such an easy
    task. 3. Give notice in DC that we’re leaving RFK. See if the city
    puts a stadium deal together. If they refuse…don’t go to
    Baltimore…just contract the team. You tried. 4. Relocate the SJ
    Earthquakes to San Francisco and rebrand. Seriously, get a stadium
    near downtown SF…and the fan support will be huge. Maybe Will
    Chang and his SF Giants owners can help if #3 doesn’t work out. 5.
    The Revs are not an urgent issue because they own their stadium and
    are profitable. Don’t get me wrong, a stadium near downtown Boston
    would create fan support on par with Seattle. But not maximizing
    the potential of your market is not the same as struggling to
    remain a going concern in your market. 6. Encourage protective
    headgear. New research on CTE is going to decimate football…don’t
    let the media lump soccer in the same category.

  11. Okay, so I accidentally disabled the Java script on my browser,
    thus making it LOOK like the comments section was
    gone. My bad.

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