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Leagues: MLS

Quick Hits: June 3, 2009


My focus as announced last week is on the US National Team for the Summer. I apologize for the lack of MLS coverage. The site while called MLS Talk has created a niche where we cover all aspects of the American game from the national team, through MLS, USL, WPS right on down to the NPSL, PCSL, PDL and College Soccer. Understand when the national team plays particularly in World Cup qualifying the focus must be there for many of us. MLS has done a fair job of trying to schedule better this season and they must be commended for that, even though they still have a long way to go.

* MLS Talk Podcast #84 is now available for download via ITunes. The podcast is entirely focused on MLS and USL related issues.
* Conor Casey, who I’ve advocated as the first choice striking option for the US since September of 2007 has won MLS Player of the Month.
* The US has not been invited to Copa America 2011, with Japan joining Mexico as the other invited nation from outside COMNEBOL.
* Vancouver of USL-1 defeated Toronto FC of MLS 2-0 last night to virtually clinch a CONCACAF Champions League birth. Vancouver (or TFC if they beat Montreal next week by five goals) becomes the sixth team from MLS or USL to clinch a Champions League birth, something sure to be a sore subject in Mexico who only provide four participants, and yet placed all four of last year’s participants in the knock out stages and has three semifinalists. While USL-1’s Puerto Rico Islanders made the semifinals last year, do not expect a similar run from the struggling side this year, which means the current streak of nine straight tournaments without a finalist from a US based league is likely to continue. Toronto FC can make the tournament if they beat Montreal by a score of 5-0 next week at Saputo Stadium. Otherwise Vancouver represents Canada.
* US-Costa Rica has been moved from ESPN to ESPN2 and coverage will now start at 9:30pm ET instead of 10pm ET. Confused? So are many others. Why ESPN moved this match at the last minute after not announcing its coverage plans until last week remains can only be explained in Bristol.
* JP Dellecamara and John Harkes will the match tonight from the ESPN studio as announced last week. They will however call the US-Honduras game from Soldier Field.
* MLS Talk #85 featuring post match reaction from US-Costa Rica and a preview of the weekend’s US qualifier against Honduras among other things will be released late Thursday or early Friday ET.

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  1. Berlin

    June 3, 2009 at 11:05 pm

    So help me, if this site goes all Nats (God love them, because the Ticos sure don’t), I’m out. It’s MLStalk. I love MNT soccer, but I come here looking for MLS insight. It’s fine if it’s just you Kartik, you hate MLS anyway. 😉

  2. Toronto Football Club

    June 3, 2009 at 7:11 pm

    If TFC beats Montreal 4-0, TFC wins the V-Cup. They only need to win by 4, not 5. If TFC wins by 4, TFC and Vancouver will be tied in goal diferential, but TFC will have more total goals. So they will go thru.

  3. Kevin

    June 3, 2009 at 1:57 pm

    HAs anyone listend to the podcast yet? Full of USL/MLS stuff. I’m surprised ESPN did something good for soccer. Yes I know it’s the Nats. but I still hold them suspect. Sure the spelling bee coverage wont bumb the game?

  4. Tony

    June 3, 2009 at 1:42 pm

    Anyone who honestly believes Canadians are half the readership are nuts. I am tired of hearing from Canadians how they are harder core supporters than Americans and are more versed in the game than us. You have a great national team that has now failed to get out of the semifinal stage of qualifying three straight times despite having all sorts of financial advantages over most of CONCACAF.

    As for the USMNT debate and K’s coverage I personally do not approve of MLS playing through these breaks so when I come here I expect USMNT coverage. Can you believe Kansas City has a home game scheduled on Saturday at the same exact time the nats are playing Honduras? So once again, fans have to decide whether to watch the national team or go to a live game?

    What other country has fans who defend the decisions of their leagues and clubs to schedule games AT THE VERY SAME TIME AS THEIR NATIONAL TEAM IS PLAYING A QUALIFIER? ONLY IN AMERICA I GUESS!

  5. Jason

    June 3, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    Do you really think half of the people on this site are Canadian. The last I checked there were 25 teams in MLS/USL1, but only 3 were from Canada. No disrespect to Canadian soccer, but it a not logical to think supporteres of 3 teams and a National team that has played few meaningful matches in the last 12 years represents 50% of the readers on this site.

    Kartik a previous poster is spot on with why the game was moved to ESPN2. A litlle more research and you would have seen this is a benefit for tonights viewers.

  6. Todd Boss

    June 3, 2009 at 1:21 pm

    I don’t get some of the criticism here. Alot of USMNT coverage but not enough good coverage which K usually provides. But even Kartik is dropping the ball lately with more puff pieces than ever like the mainstream media which always talks about this guys background and what a good job bradley is doing.

    Where is Denholm when you need him?

  7. Darren

    June 3, 2009 at 1:12 pm


    The reason we need kartik to focus on the national team heavily is because ESPN and the other mainstream outlets tend to be in the tank for the national team and have stories written by writers not well versed in CONCACAF or who don’t follow as many leagues as I believe Kartik does.

    I’d actually be pretty poed if Kartik backed off and said “read”

    He’s critical but also been on the money more often than many critics would like to acknowledge.

  8. Ryan

    June 3, 2009 at 11:37 am

    “Vancouver becomes the sixth team from MLS or USL to clinch a Champions League birth, something sure to be a sore subject in Mexico who only provide four participants, and yet placed all four of last year’s participants in the knock out stages and has three semifinalists.”

    That’s an unfair comparison as you’re including 2 different leagues and 3 self-governing territories versus Mexico’s single league, single country.

  9. Joe in Indianapolis

    June 3, 2009 at 11:15 am

    While I enjoy USMNT coverage, I think you should start a difference site to focus on them. I come to your site for news about MLS, USL, US Open Cup, etc. You’re good at providing topics on those leagues/competitions. Kartik, I rarely agree with your views, but you get discussion going.

    Talking USMNT is not your strength. The debate over who should play or who should get deservingly called up is discussed widely. ESPN sparks this debate every time games roll around. I think you should stick to what you are good at, which is covering leagues that most media does not give enough attention to. That’s why I like this site. If this turns into a site about USMNT during the remainder of the MLS season, I will be very disappointed.

  10. AJ

    June 3, 2009 at 11:01 am

    Regarding the coverage switch from ESPN to ESPN2, the move was made because ESPN2 was originally supposed to carry college softball, but the series was wrapped up last night. The lead in for USA-CR on ESPN was going to be an MLB game which has the potential to run over into the start of USA-CR; therefore, the switch was made to guarantee the start of the game was seen. Also, a pregame show was added. Actually a pretty good move by ESPN.

  11. TTB

    June 3, 2009 at 10:22 am

    Finally some Canadian coverage. TFC won’t make it. Montreal beat Rochester on Saturday and is turning the corner.

    I am so sick of all the US National Team coverage. Seriously don’t you guys realize MLS and USL are US/Canadian leagues and that you are alienating half your audience focusing on one national team and not the other?

    Besides the club game is where it is at right now in North America. The US isn’t going to win the World Cup, but someone in either the US or Canada will left the MLS Cup. We Canadians have helped fuel a passionate rivalry in North America and increased the interest and scope of supporters for the game.

    National Team matches have to be put back in the proper context on this site. When MLS is playing or even USL for that matter, they must be the priority. That’s why I have been reading this website less and less since last week’s announcement.

  12. Kartik Krishnaiyer

    June 3, 2009 at 10:18 am

    Yeah, Gazza corrected it. TFC can still get in and given Montreal’s USL-1 form, a 5-0 win is not out of the question.

  13. Gazza

    June 3, 2009 at 10:14 am

    Whoa …… backup there Kartik. Vancouver haven’t clinched anything yet. Sure I highly doubt Toronto FC will beat the Impact 4-nil but let’s play the match first before we give the Whitecaps the trophy.

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