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Lawsuit by youth clubs against MLS Players Union dismissed
by Mike Woitalla, March 30th, 2017 5:49PM
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TAGS:  mls, youth, youth boys, youth girls, youth soccer

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By Mike Woitalla

A lawsuit against the MLS Players Union (MLSPU) that was part of American youth clubs’ quest to receive compensation for their former players who go pro was dismissed by the U.S. District Court Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division.

Commonly in the rest of the world, youth clubs receive training compensation and solidarity payments, as stipulated by FIFA’s Regulations on the Status and Transfer of Players (RSTP).

For example, when Manchester United paid a transfer fee of $10 million to Bayern Munich to acquire 30-year-old Bastian Schweinsteiger in 2015, small German club TSV 1860 Rosenheim received a $42,000 share because Schweinsteiger played for it before moving to Bayern Munich at age 14.

MLS does not make such payments while the U.S. Soccer Federation does not enforce RSTP, having cited that such payments would violate U.S. anti-trust law.

In July of 2016, Dallas Texans, Crossfire Premier (Washington) and Sockers FC (Illinois) filed a class action lawsuit in a federal court in Texas against the MLS Players Union (MLSPU) charging that MLSPU was threatening an antitrust suit that would interfere with their negotiations with MLS and U.S. Soccer to implement a system of training compensation within the USA.

The MLSPU is against solidarity fees and training compensation, claiming the fees would come out of the earnings of the players it represents.

On Wednesday, U.S. District Court Eastern District of Texas dismissed the lawsuit, granting a motion by the MLSPU that the court lacked personal jurisdiction.

The three clubs are still waiting a decision from FIFA's Dispute Resolution Chamber (DRC) on claims for a combined $480,500 on transfers involving DeAndre Yedlin (Crossfire), Clint Dempsey (Texans) and Michael Bradley (Sockers FC). Crossfire claims it’s entitled to a $60,000 share of the Yedlin transfer fee. (About $20 million have changed hands during the pro club transfers of Dempsey, who played youth ball for the Texans.)

Attorney Lance Reich, who represents the three youth clubs, told ESPN FC’s Jeff Carlisle he was "still mulling over the full import of the opinion" but added: "The key we're focused on is the specific ruling by the judge that the MLSPU is not a party to a player transfer, therefore they don't have a cause of action, so they can't sue us for antitrust."

For its part, the MLSPU issued the following statement from its executive director Bob Foose:

"We have said consistently that training compensation and solidarity payments are bad for players, and would treat players differently than employees in any other industry, including sports. For example, it's absurd to think that a business school could demand a fee from a company that hired one of its students. Yet, that’s the kind of payments the youth clubs seek.

“No player should have the market for his services adversely affected by these payments. This is not to say that players and the Players Union don’t believe in and support youth development. We do, but it should not be funded through a tax on randomly selected professional players' contracts. We have said all along that we do not understand why the youth clubs sued players and their union, and we certainly do not believe that the suit was filed in the appropriate court. We’re very satisfied that the Court has agreed and brought this case to a close by dismissing it in its entirety.”

Besides anti-trust, other reasons cited for RSTP not applying to American youth clubs have included child labor laws, ruining non-profit status and NCAA eligibility, and the fact that Americans clubs are already compensated by the fees they charge the players. Lawyers for the youth clubs say none of those are applicable, and clubs cite that if they received compensation from pro clubs they would be able to increase financial aid to other players.

* * * * * * * * * *

Report: Jonathan Klinsmann to go on Everton trial

U.S. U-20 goalkeeper Jonathan Klinsmann will go on trial with English Premier League club Everton after attending the U.S. U-20s training camp in London next week, reports the Daily Mail. Klinsmann started for the USA during its Concacaf U-20 Championship win in March that qualified it for the 2017 U-20 World Cup.

A sophomore at Cal, Klinsmann trained with German club VfB Stuttgart’s U-23s, for whom his father Jurgen Klinsmann played in the 1980s, earlier this month.

The U-20 World Cup, hosted by South Korea, takes place May 20-June 11.



57 comments
  1. Quarterback TD
    commented on: March 30, 2017 at 7:05 p.m.
    Sounds more like a class action lawsuit than a Union work related issue. Anyway this is stupid and FIFA has absolutely no authority with labor laws and how it is administered in the US and its Territories. My personal take is clubs need to sign contracts for kids they are training if they want to profit from their endevours.. it is no different than a company paying for a child to act in a movie or commercial and trust funds are created for the child but sign off by the child's guardian. For the clubs that let these players go it's your lost accept it and go an work by the rules so you can avoid these stupid laws in the future..
  1. Liane Sims
    commented on: March 30, 2017 at 8:03 p.m.
    Didnt Mls collect Training Compensation fees on Yedlin even though they only had him for 1-2 years before he went pro? Tottenham paid this and said that they were told by Mls that Mls would distribute accordingly. So is this lawyer stating that his own client is acting absurdly? Also, the % that is paid from transfer fees to clubs involved in development has nothing to do with what a player is being paid as salary. MLS is double dipping and don't deserve it's fans.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: March 30, 2017 at 9:28 p.m.
    University of Akron would have a much bigger gripe than Crossfire does. Unless Crossfire was waiving his costs, they were already compensated for Yedlin's training. Akron, on the other hand, gave him two years of free education valued at several thousands of dollars in addition to giving him free training under perhaps the top youth coach in the US at the time. Agree or no?
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 2, 2017 at 10:50 p.m.
    Akron should get the 2 years compensation. Just like they should pay their college athletes a salary in addition to free education. Next question.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 10:28 a.m.
    If that is the case, then what the player's union is fearing will come true. If every college and every club gets a cut, that will come out of their salaries, not somewhere else.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 12:59 p.m.
    What the players and their union should be smart enough to figure out is that they can and will probably be coaches for more years than they will be players so paying training compensation along with paying a % of transfer fees (which by the way, has nothing to do with a player's salary) will be better in the long run for their future. They should look at it as a retirement plan. For some reason, I think you are smart enough to know this. If that doesnt stimulate their brain cells then just understand that it works for thousands of all the other leagues in the world. All Mls is doing is trying to make the owners more money and make them less viable to take financial risks at the expense of everyone else. Players, youth clubs, fans, etc.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 4:39 p.m.
    I am actually not against training compensation. It's not a magic bullet though, and we can do fine without it. I think it would help our development system, but it's not a simple topic by any means.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 5:48 p.m.
    The current Mls system is not a magic bullet. Difference is the payment of TC along with transfer is a provenly better developmental system. Proven. On that side of things, our system hasn't proved anything
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 8:01 p.m.
    Yeah, no kidding. A magic bullet doesn't exist. That's why MLS' slow and steady growth with their eyes on the long term are the best prospects for the sport.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 11:09 p.m.
    Integrating the community is what is healthy and best.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 11:13 p.m.
    Agreed that is part of the pie, but there are many many other slices there. And even within the slice of "integrating the community," there are lots of factions that need to be included there. Not to mention, some of the community that really needs to be involved are not necessarily interested in doing so.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 4, 2017 at 1:19 p.m.
    Lol. Don, which part of the community isn't interested? You crack me up. "It's part of it"? Please tell me how Mls is integrating the soccer playing communities into the club? $100 a year memberships to use the Mls brand name? $350-$500 uniforms? Is that how they are doing it? What about the communities that can't afford that? How is Mls working hard to integrate them? Even the bkind can see the truth.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 4, 2017 at 8:29 p.m.
    I would just be very careful before you generalize the entire latino population as being crazy about soccer. I would also say from my experience, that this population is usually not interested in MLS, and they are often not necessarily looking to play the game at an elite level. It is often more of a communal thing that they take very seriously, but also that they don't think about advancing to play at higher levels. But listen, I mostly agree with you about this, also. We need to include every aspect of our communities, and reaching the latino population has not been a strong point of MLS in its first 20 years or so. They could certainly be doing a better job there, and I think they realize that. That said, the latin influence is growing. So, I am with you on this point. I also agree that training compensation would, in theory, help our overall development system. And I also agree that promotion/relegation would be great for the league -- I just disagree considerably on the timeline that this can realistically happen on. So there are three areas of improvement that I agree with on that on some level MLS should be working to solve. But to let that cloud the entire picture and make me blind to the dozens of other amazing things that are happening with the leagues and the development of soccer in this country. To act like these three things mean that soccer is in the gutter is missing a huge part of the picture.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 4, 2017 at 11:38 p.m.
    Well Don the entire 14% of our population, black people, aren't all crazy about basketball and football either. Lets be careful about that as well. So let's say it's closer to 5-7% of the population dominate basketball and the other 5-7% dominate football. That's a closer number. So from your experience Hispanics don't want to reach elite levels? Lol. Please tell me what makes you come to that conclusion? Because they won't pay the crazy fees that white parents pay for training? Or they simply don't see the value in the type of training most coaches in Usa teach? Because if that's the case, I would say they are more realistic as to what it takes to reach the "Elite" levels. Man you really cracked me up with that one. I'm all about my Pro soccer team being all about the community, so until they reach out to the underserved communities, to which they show no interest what so ever, I will never be a fan. They could have at least reached out in some way to the Hispanic community and the fact that their presence is "solely" in the white upscale communities tells me all I need to know about them.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 12:15 a.m.
    I would say that there are definitely cultural factors that are hindering latino inclusion. Some of that is on them -- they feel like their own soccer culture is superior -- and some of that is on us -- mainly the pay to play model. But let's not act like latinos are completely left out when it comes to soccer in the US. There are lots and lots of latinos contributing in a big way, and there are lots of examples of success stories that both sides have contributed to. Nevertheless, I AGREE with you on the whole with this issue. And that is fine if you don't LIKE Chicago Fire (apparently not many people do) or MLS as a league, but you have clearly let your bitterness cloud your judgement of the league and the progress that it has made over the last 20, 10, 5 years.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 1:33 a.m.
    Chicago Fire? Who said anything about them? "Latinos feel superior"? And that's why Mls won't integrate that culture? Question Don. What ethnicity in Usa would you say picks and has oicked soccer as it's sport of choice in our history? Hispanics. Do you know which league is the most watched in Usa? Liga MX. You think that's a coincidence? It worries me that Mls won't aknowledge this demographic. And yes, Latinos have contributed to soccer in this country in a big way but it hasn't been because Mls has looked to integrate their communities. It's only because of how hard it is to deny top talent. We just don't share the same point of view as to what progress is. You mostly measure it by owners profits. I measure it by how integrated it is with their respective communities as most important. A sports team shoild reflect its community as main objective. That's just me.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 8:11 a.m.
    MLS has been trying very hard to include latino fans from the beginning of it's existence. They have been more successful in some ways than others, but they are trying very hard -- signing Mexican and Central American stars (like Blanco, dos Santos, Chicharito/Guardado coming..., ads and marketing initiatives geared toward the latin market, programs like Sueno, etc. Just because you haven't seen it in your city doesn't mean there aren;t things being done. And that is not saying that it has been done well, either. Yes, latinos mostly prefer Liga MX to MLS. Many latinos families feel more comfortable within their culture -- language, customs, popular culture, etc -- and that causes them to be a little bit insular and harder to reach. That is just a fact of cultural differences that comes with immigration. Progress is much more than financial -- although that progress HAS to be there. Progress is also in developing young talent. Progress is also in bringing in better and younger foreign players. Progress is in the overall quality of the league.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 10:09 a.m.
    Mls has been trying hard to include Hispanic culture? Really? Lets compare. At youth level, i have seen zero approach to the Hispanic communities in any shape or form but I have seen a great effort to include white people through an aggressive approach of rich white neigborhood travel soccer clubs by sending those clubs under Mls umbrella English coaches, who are most appealling to that demographic. Now that's effort! I however Dont see anywhere, Mls hiring Mexican youth coaches to send to Hispanic communities. Sueno Mls? You do know that the 2015 2 National Sueno Mls winners were from Chicago and were never even offered a spot on the Academy right? Yes, every culture feels comfortable with the home land. Thats why white people in Usa that play soccer would rather watch the Epl and the Mls but Mls has shown a "real" effort with that group in hiring English and Euro coaches. No such effort on Hispanic youth side. It is clear that they are not targeting the Hispanic community.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 10:31 a.m.
    You convinced me, Gary. Everything with US Soccer and MLS is horrible because MLS is not doing enough to reach out to the barrios. This is causing all of the trends to point downward, and we will be lucky if we qualify for another World Cup and if MLS is still here in 5 years.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 10:43 a.m.
    You're welcome Don.
  1. Jay Wall
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 8:44 a.m.
    CASE LAW - In the United States in 1982 (may be 81 but have copy of it in storage) a case that has impacted youth players to this day was decided. A multi-sport club that focused on developing elite youth soccer teams and players, had nationally ranked youth teams and an apprenticeship program had several coaches who decided to create their own club to win national championships. When the coaches started the new club a lawsuit was filed claiming the teams belonged to the club they were started at, not to the new club. The case became a problem for the original multi-sport club. If they documented all they spent on developing elite soccer teams with money raised by teams in other sports and volunteers from all the sports they would lose face, members and financial backing in the community. If they testified they didn't add significant value they might lose their claim the team's belonged to the club. If they proved they flew in coaches from England, paid for additional trainers, helped with the cost for major showcase tournaments and gave scholarships to players who otherwise couldn't afford to play . . . then they would lose revenue from other sports, volunteers from other sports and local community support. So for the life of the club the evidence presented led the judge to believe the club's contributions were not as significant as the fees paid by the parents and therefore the Judge decided the parents (team members) owned the teams and could decide what club they played for. This ruling became the basis for who owns a team since then and is upheld by USYSA state associations. Now if the financial model is changed and all training and developmental expenses are paid by a club, there are no pay to play fees charged parents other than insurance and player personal items like uniforms, then the team should be the club's and their contribution to a players development can be documented on audited financials and a club should be entitled to reimbursement of what they invested in creating players. Right now U.S. players are a bargain for clubs around the world because the view within the United States is you (the parents) pay for your child to play and the club doesn't really contribute to a player's development in the same way as in the rest of the world. And in reality the coaching and development of most players is not at the same level as professional clubs who do earn a payment by developing players who can learn to play at the highest levels. On graduation from high school my son wanted to play in Europe so he flew over, spent weeks watching local professional teams practice and play games and asked for tryouts. Made the first club he tried out for and was in uniform playing in less than a month. Good enough to play, good enough to start on a lower division team in Europe but lacked the experience to play at the highest level in Europe's Top 5 Leagues. We need a system for those clubs with the financial resources to properly develop players an
  1. R2 Dad
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 11:52 a.m.
    Bob Foose, you are a twit. "For example, it's absurd to think that a business school could demand a fee from a company that hired one of its students. Yet, that’s the kind of payments the youth clubs seek." Errm, except MLS is a monopoly, and the business school example you site is not, so it's apples and donuts. US courts and US Soccer have granted MLS a monopoly. It's not enough to monopolize adult soccer in this country, MLS has to monopolize youth soccer as well. Foose can flap his gums all he wants--what MLS is doing is still unAmerican.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 3:55 p.m.
    Calling MLS a monopoly is one of the dumbest arguments out there. Players can sign with any number of foreign leagues, right? Plenty of players have found other avenues for playing the game professionally outside of MLS. If this monopoly argument had any legs at all, the NFL would be the most susceptible, but professional sports leagues are not monopolies because they are not preventing competition. It's just too hard for competition to catch up. The failure of NASL, which was directly competing with MLS is a prime example of this. They simply could not meet the requirements that were laid out for them to really compete. That does not mean that they were not able to try, and that fact alone is enough dispute an monopoly arguments.
  1. R2 Dad
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 5:15 p.m.
    Don, you would be correct on all points IF soccer leagues existed in a vacuum. But it turns out MLS/Garber is a single entity/monopoly that was given Division 1 status by US Soccer/Sunil, without any legal requirement to change/convert to an open system at some later date. Or cap the number of teams that would constitute a complete league. NASL was given Division 2 status. So the two were never equals from the start (I realize this is a simplification of a long history). MLS is now spreading their socialism by adopting USL (not merging) and now adding a 3rd league to further control players and choke off NASL. There is nothing holy to me about NASL, but it represents the open market approach. MLS is spreading the scope of their closed model because US Soccer allows it. I think that in 20 years time we will be having this same conversation, with two more generations of players underserved because only the dual nationals with the option to leave the US will have the opportunity to do so. Pulisic at 15 was like hundreds of other top youth players, but if you left him in an MLS academy team he would be shuffled off to USL for a few years and never would have grown--just like the hundreds of other "DA" players that are his peers. Pulisic didn't rot because his father knew better. How many other top youth players can claim that?
  1. Quarterback TD
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 6:27 p.m.
    R2 is totally correct the MLS/USSF is a monolopy that controls soccer from youth through Pro. NFL does not control any aspect of youth football and have never interfered with anyone trying to form another football league. USSF tries to put down other soccer programs like High School, College and even the ECNL soccer for the simple fact they realize they will never be able to control it. Hopefully their bubble will burst like what happen in England and create a Premier League for some teams and an ECNL for others.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 7:50 p.m.
    How bout MLS EARNED division 1 status? MLS did the heavy lifting for 15 years and then NASL pops up and thinks they have a case to be on par? What kind of bs is that? The fact that NASL was given d2 was more than enough for them to build from there. They screwed that up royally, however. Given the trajectory that the leagues have been on, there is a much better chance that we have a great system for players to come up in than what you suggest. Just 5 years ago, none of this was here. Now, there is a tiered system of three leagues working in concert with each other. This gives youth players a place to develop in a professional environment that will develop tremendously over the next decade. In 20 years time (your timeline), there is easily conceivable that we have a better development system than Europe does. Youth development is improving dramatically -- we are still in our first decade of actually emphasizing it, so your dreary outlook on its future is beyond simple pessimism.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 7:57 p.m.
    QB - The Premier League had little to do with a bubble bursting and more to do with media rights and dollars. Your argument about MLS being a monopoly holds no weight at all. USSF, a third party, sets the rules, and MLS meets them. They are the governing body of the sport, and they set the standards that leagues either live up to or don't. MLS is able to; NASL can't. Other challengers are free to try their hand. I don't think MLS would be shaking in their boots if a group did challenge them because they have 20 years doing the heavy sledding to be in the cat-bird's position that they are in.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 2, 2017 at 10:54 p.m.
    R2 I agree with you completely. The writing is clearly on the wall but some here are invested in the Mls and are just kissing the ring. Just like everything else that is wrong with this country. Mls, is there a better definition of a monopoly?
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 10:25 a.m.
    Gary - For starters, the NFL would be a much better definition of a monopoly because there is not the same global market that soccer has. That said, the NFL and MLS are both susceptible to competition. Therefore, they cannot be defined as a monopoly. But, how exactly is the "writing on the wall" for MLS? The league is making serious progress in every realm of its existence. Keep in mind that this existence is still relatively young, and after a rocky first 10 years, there has been booming growth over the last 10. To the vast majority of people the writing on the wall shows tons and tons of promise.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 1 p.m.
    By that defenition then Monopolies simply dont exist right Don? Lol.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 2:16 p.m.
    Gary - That is pretty much correct. True monopolies are VERY rare. Where they are more likely to exist is with things such as utilities. If a water company owns access to all of the fresh water and infrastructure to deliver that water, that would be a monopoly. Soccer is virtually impossible to monopolize.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 3:24 p.m.
    Gary, several entities can monopoloize a service. Like meat companies used to be 100s. Now its down to like 5 companies or less. That proccess is called monopolizing. Us Soccer is being monopolized for sure as far as leagues and team ownership is concerned. You know this is very true when the organization that supposed to be monitoring and regulating your actions in a fair to competition manner is instead catering to your every move. There is perhaps no better example of a monopoly if one exists at all. So lets call it "pretty god damn close to a monopoly". How bout dah
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 4:44 p.m.
    USSF helped NASL tremendously to achieve the status that they did have before they had ever even kicked a ball in their 2.0 version. USSF threw NASL another lifeline recently by giving them exemptions and maintaining d2 status. USSF had to step in and clean up a complete mess. That is not collusion, that is just setting standards that a league of its supposed stature should be able to live up to easily. If USSF helped NASL get on it's feet as recently as 5-6 years ago, it would stand to reason that another league could also receive the same kind of recognition. That would not immediately put them on par with MLS, but it would allow them to challenge. No monopoly. Not even close.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 5:50 p.m.
    It's strategically being done and I think you know that.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 3, 2017 at 7:59 p.m.
    The NASL strategically blew itself up? Again?? c'mon man. The USSF was forced to step in and put some kind of order to what was going on with that joke of a league run by that clown Peterson.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 4, 2017 at 1:23 p.m.
    Yea. ussf was forced to not even question Mls on not paying training compensation and therefore work more closely with the underserved communities. Ussf is forced to not at least question Mls development practices and or minutes for young homegrowns like in other countries. We even have several positive examples of such where national teams have benefited from Federation involvement and requirements from their leagues.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 4, 2017 at 8:38 p.m.
    Gary, In this context, training compensation is almost a mirage. An infinitesimally small number of players will gain contracts that would make compensation worthwhile. Unless you are a program with other revenue streams (like DA clubs or MLS academies), how would you fund an academy without charging the players something? Training players at no cost is the only way to truly justify compensation, right?
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 4, 2017 at 11:45 p.m.
    If in fact Training compensation is a mirage well then Mls has nothing to worry about, now do they? Much less the player union. That's who you need to convince. If anything it's at least the Mls telling it's local communities it is willing to work close with them to get local talent to the top. A true community outreach. An investment on Mls part into the community. Can you imagine how appreciative a Hispanic community would be to see how their efforts are compensated for helping develop and promote a local player to Their local Mls team? It's invaluable and it boggles the mind that Mls doesn't see this. It's more like they are fighting against it unneccessarily. Would defenitely lower costs of club fees and more so in low budget communities. Would it affect the $2500-$3000 a year pay to play clubs that you are used to dealing with? Maybe not as much but how about the many parents that cant even pay $200 a year for their kid to even play locally? They don't count? Maybe then you will not write them off as not wanting to reach "elite" levels. I think you and many here would be extremely surprised.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 12:25 a.m.
    Most MLS academies don't charge their players, and many DA squads are stepping up their efforts to alleviate the pay to play challenges for underserved communities. The fact remains that running a club requires a ton of money, and not many can just allow everyone to play for free (even though that is the way MLS academies are heading). Your judgement of the league (saying that you don't think that anything about it is healthy) is misguided even if you do have some legitimate reasons to want some things to be better.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 1:38 a.m.
    Don why are you lying? I dont see LA Galaxy teams in the barrio. I sure as hell see them all over the rich suburbs. That's the effort you talk about? Some Mls DAs are not even free. I think only a little more than 1/2 of them are. That's the progress you speak of after 20 years? Please tell me how Mls is approaching the barrios or poor black neigborhoods and making it more affordable? Healthy to me is, again, a pro team that closely identifies with their most passionate soccer communities. Not even close.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 8:20 a.m.
    20 years? The academy initiative is much closer to 5 years old. These academies are overwhelmingly moving to free to play models. The fact is that LA and other MLS clubs don't have the resources to scour every street in the country. They are developing partnerships with local clubs in their area, and unfortunately those clubs have been more focused on the suburbs. Despite this weakness, you cannot deny that the overall progress of youth development in the US has been amazing over the last few years. The quality of the players that are not available to the U20s alone proves that that pool of players is much better than any that has before them. And you have to include finances in at least some part of your assessment of the health of our professional league. Ignoring that is ignorant and shows no understanding of how professional leagues work.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 10:41 a.m.
    I understand the finance part but all I care about is the community. Mls has targeted one specific demographic and excluded it's most soccer loving one. That's hard to ignore and I see nothing changing or a hint that ot ever will. Don't know how Mls expects for Hispanics and people like me to come in as fans from seeing this. I don't see how anything is stopping them financially from scouting Hispanic youth leagues or working closely with them as far as clinincs camps etc. For there to be effort there must first be desire to do so. Up until now it's more been an exclusion than a lack of resources. Let's not forget that we are talking about the demographic that watches the most soccer of any other ethnicities. Hispanics. Let that sink in.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 1:50 p.m.
    MLS is not "excluding" latinos. They have games broadcast in spanish on spanish language tv, they have marketing campaigns in spanish, they target national team players from latin countries. They might not be recruiting latin youth players as well as they should, but they are not excluding anyone.
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 1:51 p.m.
    Oh ok. They are just not including them. Same difference.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 2:45 p.m.
    What is MLS supposed to go hold their hands and give them a ride them a ride to tryouts?
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 4:18 p.m.
    I am not even talking about Academy. I'm talking about the community. It is disgraceful that Mls targets the rich neigborhoods and not the soccer culture rich poor ones. Saids it all. Embrace a community is not the same as holding their hands dumby.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 7:43 p.m.
    You think that no aspect of MLS is healthy, and I'm the dummy?
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 7:51 p.m.
    Not to mention, you can't go a week without changing your handle or being forced to have it changed, and I'm the dummy. lol
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 8:09 p.m.
    The most important one is not healthy. Thats what I am saying. Handle? What the hell are you talking about now?
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 8:59 p.m.
    You specifically said that you didn't see ANYTHING healthy about MLS. Glad that you are walking that comment back. Your handle is the name that you post under. All American, Jake Savino, and a few others...
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 9:58 p.m.
    Man you have issues. All that matters to me from Mls is unhealthy. Don't care for the rest if the essential is not met.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: April 5, 2017 at 10:33 p.m.
    Okay, brother. Hope Gary can stick around for longer than the others. cheers
  1. Gary Young
    commented on: April 6, 2017 at 7:58 a.m.
    My points of view aren't well taken in this forum? If that's the case, I'll be ok. Not me who loses credebility. Good debate though.
  1. R2 Dad
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 9:16 p.m.
    You're really naive, Don. Do you think if these guys showed up on Sunil's doorstep they'd be welcome to start a competing league? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_Abramovich https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alisher_Usmanov https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Farhad_Moshiri_(businessman) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vichai_Srivaddhanaprabha They've already got NYCFC with Mansour_bin_Zayed_Al_Nahyan--would they really allow petrodollar/oligarch/chinese communist/business guy in to challenge MLS? This is where the money is coming from in modern football.
  1. don Lamb
    commented on: March 31, 2017 at 10:09 p.m.
    Sunil would have no choice but to allow those dudes to compete. Apparently, USSF will grant a league 2division status to a league with zero years of operation under their belt. To pretend like USSF has treated NASL unfairly is asinine. NASL has shot itself in the foot over and over, and finally the embarassment that they were was so odious that the Federation had to step in and enforce some order. So, yes, many of those guys would be given the opportunity to create their own league even if their task would be much harder the NASL's since they will be starting from scratch with minimal community connections. I strongly disagree with the notion that any of those billionaires would be successful starting a soccer league, or buying a lower division (lesser markets) and growing that, if you wish. Again, the much more realistic scenario than someone trying trying to compete with MLS is that those types of people will want to invest in and partner with MLS. You think that MLS doesn't have a wealthy and powerful ownership group? MLS teams present one of the tastiest soccer investments given the rate that they are growing in value over the last 10 years and the amount of growth potential.
  1. Nick Daverese
    commented on: April 1, 2017 at 4:09 a.m.
    When I first started to play and later coach in our youth league the Cosmopolitan Jr soccer league was the oldest youth league in the United States.started in the early 1930s. The rules for players were very similar to our adult league. If a players started with a club and played more then 3 yrs with us we owned the player. They could not leave our club without a release from the club. Unless the player moved too far away to play for the club. If the player got his release and that hardly ever happen. They had to wait to the next year to play for the new club. Plus the new club would have to pay money to the old club who developed him. Certain amount for every year he was with the old club. So the old club owned the rights to the player. We had one of the best youth teams in the US under 16. We booked game all over the US. I wanted to play the US national team under 16 yr old. I was confident we could beat them. On that team was a 15 yr old Landon Donovan, Beasily and others. But they were only together a few months and could not make it happen back then. I did not coach that team. He was a Spanard we let's our coaches run their teams pretty much as they wanted to then. Players and parents loved the guy. But he did not want his players doing anything else then training and playing for him. No odp they could not play up in any games of our under 17 or under 19 teams either. If we were short a player or two. The club did not like that so we told him you could not do that. He gets aggravated and see's he will take the team and play somewhere else. He does it but he did not understand the realities just how to train players. Club spent a lot of money on that team. Unfortunately for him he did not have a lot of money of his own. Our players and their parents did not pay to play. The league would not that team play in our league. He had no money to put them in tournaments parents were not going to spen their own money for anything. we gave them everything sweat suits equipment bags everything. They did not play for the rest of that year. Some wanted to come back we let them wait untill the new year to come back. We lost a performance bond because they did not finish the year. Next year he tried to put them in a new league that just formed. No completion he only had 1/2 of the players. Later one kid parents tried getting a lawyer to get him out. It did not work with us but new clubs gave them the release to avoid going to court. Then things on player rights changed.
  1. John Guild
    commented on: April 7, 2017 at 11:27 a.m.
    It's somewhat boneheaded to say that allowing the compensation would affect player salaries. Player salaries are set by competitive pressure, player skills, and club revenue. Transfer fees are values placed on "assets" (players under contract to a club) when being transferred and do not change the contracted salary that player is agreed to. Its similar to saying rents are affected by how much the building sold for. A new buyer of an apartment building might try to increase rents after paying 25% more for the building than the previous owner, but if there are plenty of other available units in the surrounding area, tenants will leave and their price increase will backfire. Given that the proposed payments would be post-involvement with those clubs that received the payment, and would occur after players are old enough to sign professional contracts, it's very hard to see how these payments would run afoul of child labor, non-profit or anti-trust concerns. If lawyers were able to use those issues as a means to defeat the payments, it seems like it would be a big stretch of legal principles to do so. That said, anti-trust exemptions should be removed from all pro sports.

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