The English Premier League is one of the most famous soccer leagues in the world, whereas the Major League Soccer League is just coming to prominence. Wouldn’t it be great if there was a tournament between the two leagues every summer? Well good news the MLS commissioner Don Garber is considering hosting an annual competition between North American and English teams that would take place in the summer. The competition would be called the Anglo-American Cup. Garber wants more than just the usual teams coming over for pre-season friendlies.
Garber recently told The Guardian newspaper, “I would love to find a way we could play our cup champion and our league champion against an FA Cup and league champion in a tournament and play it in New York City every year.” He went on to say that if it couldn’t be every year, then every four years would suffice. If it was to be every four years, then meticulous planning would have to go in to it to make sure it didn’t clash with other fourth yearly sporting events such as the FIFA World Cup, the European Championship and even the Olympics/Winter Olympics.
Garber’s main objective with this competition is to ride the coattails of the Premier League to help gain more exposure for MLS. After all, Premier League games are broadcast in more than 200 countries to millions of fans every week, while a club such as Manchester United has a brand value estimated to be worth about $3.1 billion. So by featuring competitive games between MLS and the Premier League, it helps expand the awareness about MLS around the world when TV broadcasters show the games during the typically slow soccer month of July.
— World Soccer Talk (@worldsoccertalk) September 9, 2015
There are, however, some concerns about bringing this competition to life. Premier League teams already have a crammed season as it is. If Garber decided on the competition taking place every four years, that could alleviate potential burn-out worries. Conversely, with such a big gap of four years, it would impact Garber’s objective of generating exposure for Major League Soccer.
Worries aside, it looks like it could be a successful competition. Garber believes it will definitely help when David Beckham’s Miami franchise is up and running. If it does go ahead and the results are successful, Garber is thinking of extending it past the Premier League, opening it up to some of Europe’s top leagues such as La Liga in Spain, Serie A in Italy, Ligue 1 in France and the Bundesliga in Germany. If this success did happen, it would certainly raise the profile of Major League Soccer even more with the likes of Leo Messi, Neymar, Luis Suarez, Cristiano Ronaldo, Zlatan Ibrahimović, Paul Pogba and Robert Lewandowski possibly playing against some of the America’s top clubs. It would increase the brand value of every club involved in the competition and meet the overall objective of the competition by raising the profile of Major League Soccer and its teams.