Major League Soccer simply doesn't have enough to show for its new designated player rule, says Brian Straus of U.S. Soccer Players. David Beckham and Claudio Reyna are great additions to the league, but each series of "major announcements" by the league since then have had nothing to do with "what we'll see on the field starting April 7," Straus says, adding that the truly big announcements have been the league's failure to sign the major players it's been endlessly linked with: Zinedine Zidane, Ronaldo, Edgar Davids, Cuauhtemoc Blanco, Robbie Fowler and others.
Today, with just three weeks left until the season opener, the 10 other
MLS clubs with DP slots (Chivas USA traded its away to New York) have
declined to use their DP salary-cap exemption slot, and why's that?
Many clubs don't have the money, while other clubs owned by big
organizations may be playing it cautious, content to sit back and see
how the Beckham situation plays out.
MLS deputy commissioner Ivan Gazidis said it's still too early to draw
conclusions about the DP rule, which he says will last at least three
years. "We're fairly confident that you're going to see some more
significant players signed under the designated player rule, and by
more than two teams," he told Straus, adding that MLS never expected it
to be "a mechanism that more than half of our teams would immediately
use." Well, two is certainly less than half of 13, but Straus points
out that the $400K hit teams against their cap for using the DP slot is
still 20 percent of a team's budget, which is probably too much. How
about getting rid of that rule? Read the original story...