"Simply put, MLS currently serves as a nursery for the next generation and a retirement home for the previous." And it's not just the league's top players who are leaving -- the likes of Pat Noonan and Andy Dorman left MLS over the summer for bigger paydays at small European clubs. Hush says the player exodus is brought on by a combination of greater worldwide visibility for the league (thanks to our friend David Beckham) and poor pay. Ultimately, money talks, and MLS simply doesn't pay comparatively well.
MLS needs to increase its salary cap, which currently stands at $2.3 million per team, in order to adequately compensate its better players, Hush says. It could also stand to increase contract lengths, as many players are asked to operate on a year-to-year basis, encouraging them to look for steadier work elsewhere.