Connect with us

Leagues: MLS

SUMmer of Soccer Big Boys on Display


SUMmer of Soccer Continues

The ‘Summer of Soccer’ which began on June 20, rolls on. After this past weekend, 41 events, including 15 doubleheaders comprising 56 matches have drawn 1,306,902, for an average of 31,876.

Since my last post on the SUMmer of Soccer, the big guns were on display and the attendances reflect that. Here’s how the events fared …

Summer of Soccer Attendances
 Real Madrid v DC United FedEx Field
Landover, MD
 Sun, Aug 09Friendly 72,368
 Barcelona v Chivas de Guadalajara Candlestick Park
San Francisco, CA
 Sat, Aug 08Friendly 61,572
 Barcelona v Seattle Qwest Field
Seattle, WA
 Wed, Aug 05Friendly 66,848
 Barcelona v LA Galaxy Rose Bowl
 Sat, Aug 01Friendly 93,137
 Mexico v USA Giants Stadium
E Rutherford, NJ
 Sun, Jul 26Gold Cup 79,156
 Chelsea v Club America Cowboys Stadium
Dallas, TX
 Sun, Jul 26WFC 57,229
 Inter Milan v AC Milan Gillette Stadium
Foxborough, MA
 Sun, Jul 26WFC 42,531
 semi-Mexico v Costa Rica
semi-USA v Honduras
 Soldier Field
Chicago, IL
 Thu, Jul 23Gold Cup 55,173
 Club America v AC Milan Georgia Dome
Atlanta GA
 Wed, Jul 22WFC 53,600
 Chelsea v Inter Milan Rose Bowl
Los Angeles, CA
 Tue, Jul 21WFC 81,224
 total 662,838 
 average 66,284 

More ch-ching for Soccer United Marketing(SUM). This was the first year of the 3 year agreement between Barcelona and SUM. They’ll return next summer, especially given the report that they took home over $8.5 million for their little USA preseason excursion.

Hello! Barca and the Galaxy pack the Rose Bowl. SUM has US marketing agreements with both Barca and Chivas; must have been some payday. Hopefully some of it will make it to the players in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement(CBA).

Gold Cup Total Attendance

Gold Cup 2009
 Mexico v USA Giants Stadium
E Rutherford, NJ
 Sun, Jul 26 Final 79,156
 Mexico v Costa Rica
USA v Honduras
 Soldier Field
Chicago, IL
 Thu, Jul 23 Semifinal 55,173
 Guadeloupe v Costa Rica
Mexico v Haiti
 Cowboys Stadium
Dallas, TX
 Sun, Jul 19 Quarterfinal 82,252
 Hondura v Canada
Panama v USA
 Lincoln Financial Field
Philadelphia, PA
 Sat, Jul 18 Quarterfinal 31,087
 Panama vs. Nicaragua
Mexico vs. Guadeloupe
 U of Phoenix Stadium
Glendale, AZ
 Sun, Jul 12 Group Play 23,876
 USA v Haiti
Honduras v Grenada
 Gillette Stadium
Foxborough, MA
 Sat, Jul 11 Group Play 24,137
 Costa Rica v Canada
El Salvador v Jamaica
 FIU Stadium
Miami, FL
 Fri, Jul 10 Group Play 17,269
 Guadeloupe v Nicaragua
Mexico v Panama
 Reliant Stadium
Houston, TX
 Thu, Jul 09 Group Play 47,713
 Haiti v Grenada
USA v Honduras
 RFK Stadium
Washington, DC
 Wed, Jul 08 Group Play 26,079
 Jamaica v Costa Rica
El Salvador v Canada
 Crew Stadium
Columbus, OH
 Tue, Jul 07 Group Play 7,059
 Panama v Guadeloupe
Nicaragua v Mexico
 Oakland-Alameda Cty Col.
Oakland, CA
 Sun, Jul 05 Group Play 32,500
 Honduras v Haiti
Grenada v USA
 Qwest Field
Seattle, WA
 Sat, Jul 04 Group Play 15,387
 Costa Rica v El Salvador
Canada v Jamaica
 Home Depot Center
Los Angeles, CA
 Fri, Jul 03 Group Play 27,000
 total 468,688 
 average 36,053 

World Football Challenge

World Football Challenge
 Chelsea v Club America Cowboys Stadium
Dallas, TX
 Sun, Jul 26WFC 57,229
 Inter Milan v AC Milan Gillette Stadium
Foxborough, MA
 Sun, Jul 26WFC 42,531
 Chelsea v AC Milan M&T Bank Stadium
Baltimore, MD
 Fri, Jul 24WFC 71,203
 Club America v AC Milan Georgia Dome
Atlanta GA
 Wed, Jul 22WFC 53,600
 Chelsea v Inter Milan Rose Bowl
 Tue, Jul 21WFC 81,224
 Club America v Inter Milan Stanford Stadium
Palo Alto, CA
 Sun, Jul 19WFC 31,026
 total 336,813
 average 56,136

SuperLiga Final Totals

SuperLiga Totals
TotalGame DatesAverage
2007 247,251 15 16,483
2008 195,380 15 13,025
2009 114,163 12 9,514
3 Doubleheaders in 2009 meant
3 fewer separate game dates

Congestion Eases Significantly, But Not for All

Although they would have preferred winning, Chicago must be glad that SuperLiga is over. They are poised for a strong finish, having recovered from a 4 game losing skein with 3 wins and 2 draws before dropping a decision at Houston.

Don Garber has already stated that the SuperLiga will be back in 2010, a World Cup year. It’s a sure indication that live attendance and wide distribution of English language coverage in the US are irrelevant. It demonstrates where the real money comes from; sponsorships and Spanish language TV. SuperLiga in August or September next year?

US Open
Sep 2
DCU vs Seattle

Both teams played on July 25th. DCU had a CONCACAF Champions league game on July 28, an MLS game on August 1, a CONCACAF Champions league game on August 4, Real Madrid on August 9, back to league play on the 15th, and having advanced in the CONCACAF Champions League, a group phase CCL game on August 18, back to league play on August 22 and then game 2 of the group phase of the CCL on August 25 and back to MLS on August 29. DCU’s schedule remains busy after the Open final with league matches on Sept 5, 8 and 12. That will make 14 matches in 50 days, and average of one match every 3.6 days for seven weeks.

DCU has earned only 16 of 39 points and with a weaker Eastern Conference are in the thick of a playoff race. As noted, DCU advanced in the CONCACAF Champions League with its preliminary win and will play on August 18 and 25, certainly making them the club most susceptible to stumbling in either MLS, the CCL or both.

Seattle will play DC United in its bid to win its first trophy as an MLS club. Seattle played an exhibition v Barcelona on August 5, and an MLS match on August 8, with league games on the 15th, 20th, 23rd and 29th leading up to the Open final.

CONCACAF Champions League
Aug 18-20Aug 25 – Aug 27
Group Game 1Group Game 2
DCU, Houston, Columbus

I’ve documented DCU’s schedule above. Houston and Columbus have it easier as they won’t have the Open to worry about nor did they need to qualify for the group stages.

Houston will have the tougher go. By the time they play there 2nd group phase CCL match against Arabe Unido in Panama, they will have played 6 matches in 21 days.

Columbus, whose 2nd group match will be away to Cruz Azul of Mexico, will have played 4 matches in 19 days, having the week of August 23rd off from league play.

Random Stats

86.58% of MLS games have been played on the weekend(Sat-Sun), leaving 13.42% of games played on weekdays. These numbers jibe with MLS’s attitude that weekday games lose too much revenue for clubs. In an earlier post, I think I disproved that theory with the caveat that creative marketing is the key to maintaining decent gate receipts for weekday matches.

No team is averging 2 goals per game, for or against. DC United top the offensive chart with 1.70 goals for but are 13th in defense, allowing 1.60.

Of the 6 fifteen minute segments in a match, minutes 76-90 have seen the most goals scored. The end of the first half, minutes 30-45 is second highest in this category.

Chivas USA’s fall from top of the table to 8th can’t be blamed on their defense. They are allowing the 2nd fewest goals per game, 0.88, but their offense is 13th, scoring 1.12.

200+ Channels With Sports & News
  • Starting price: $33/mo. for fubo Latino Package
  • Watch Premier League, World Cup, Euro 2024 & more
Live & On Demand TV Streaming
  • Price: $35/mo. for Sling Blue
  • Watch Premier League, World Cup & MLS
Many Sports & ESPN Originals
  • Price: $9.99/mo. (or get ESPN+, Hulu & Disney+ for $13.99/mo.)
  • Features Bundesliga, LaLiga, Championship, & more
2,000+ soccer games per year
  • Price: $4.99/mo
  • Features Champions League, Serie A, Europa League & NWSL
175 Premier League Games & PL TV
  • Starting price: $4.99/mo. for Peacock Premium
  • Watch 175 exclusive EPL games per season
110+ channels, live & on-demand
  • Price: $59.95/mo. for Plus Package
  • Includes FOX, FS1, ESPN, TUDN & more



  1. Peter C

    August 14, 2009 at 10:42 pm


    Late breaking news update regarding ESPN and EPL in the US.
    ESPN WILL be broadcasting EPL matches this season.

  2. Lars

    August 14, 2009 at 7:41 pm

    Great news, maybe MLS will take the cash it’s been given to turn the league into a better one.

  3. Peter C

    August 14, 2009 at 7:02 pm


    If you are in North America, it appears that Setanta will continue to broadcast its EPL package in Canada and the US.
    ESPN will begin its Great Britain EPL broadcasts(the former Setanta UK package) this weekend.

  4. Greg

    August 14, 2009 at 4:04 pm

    Is this deal with the Premiership done or not???
    I’ve been checking my guide and the games are still not posted

    Does anybody know if these games are gonna be on ESPN2???????????????//

  5. Peter C

    August 14, 2009 at 3:07 pm


    Of the matches listed in the post, SUM would get a piece of the Barcelona matches as well as, I suspect, the DCU/Real Madrid match.

    And according to their website, “Soccer United Marketing manages marketing, public relations and operations for the Gold Cup tournament.”

    In addition, “SUM manages the commercial aspects the Champions League.”

    The World Football Challenge was promoted by Creative Artists Agency.

    And yes, SUM is what keeps the league going, which has been the point of this series of posts.

  6. Mike

    August 14, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    Which matches from the above set were sponsored by SUM? I know the US Open Cup and Gold Cup were not and SuperLigas is, but what about the WFC?

    I want SUM to make as much money as possible since the MLS owners basically own SUM.

    SUM is good for MLS, and MLS is good for American/Canadian soccer growth.

  7. Rex

    August 14, 2009 at 10:49 am

    It looks like the Dynamo wanna get a piece of the action. According to Dynamo’s Chris Canetti:

    We are also close to announcing an international friendly that we will host at Robertson Stadium. The Dynamo will take on a top Mexican first division club in October. You can expect this announcement within the next week.

    Believe it or not, but I think this will be the Dynamo’s first ever international friendly. It’s very interesting timing though, right in the middle of meaningful international matches via Champions League.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More in Leagues: MLS

Translate »