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Grass Good for Guests, But Not For Best of MLS?

  • Goal.com, Wednesday, August 5, 2009 4 PM
When is what's good for the goose not good for the gander? Apparently, when it comes to the expenditure of putting player-preferred grass down rather than enduring artificial turf at marquee MLS events, suggests Goal.com's Andrea Canales.

For a pair of this Summer's "meaningless exhibition matches, MLS has ponied up the money to replace the artificial fields at Qwest Stadium (sic) in Seattle and BMO Field in Toronto," yet no such accommodations have been made for the 2009 MLS Cup nor were taken care of at the 2008 All-Star Game at the same respective venues.

While visiting super-clubs Barcelona and Real Madrid "used their clout early on to assure that the favored feet of their stars would never touch a synthetic surface, getting assurances from MLS management that sod would be placed especially for their matches on tour," it does seem odd that the league wouldn't take the same precautions to protect the legs of its most valuable players in more important competitions.

"It's not coincidence that no major soccer final has ever been played on artificial turf. No, not even in MLS has that travesty taken place for a final," writes Canales, suggesting that the venue choice for this year's Open Cup Final was swayed by grass. As for this year's league championship? "So far, the lack of action to insure it will be played on grass indicates that MLS believes it's not worthy of the honor."

Read the whole story at Goal.com »

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