NASL files Federal antitrust suit against U.S. Soccer

Less than three weeks after U.S. Soccer's board of directors voted to not sanction it as a Division 2 league for 2018, the North American Soccer League filed a Federal antitrust lawsuit against U.S. Soccer in Brooklyn Federal court.

The NASL is only seeking injunctive relief -- asking that U.S. Soccer end its divisional designation for pro soccer.

The complaint alleges:

-- Its anti-competitive "division" structure has divided men's pro soccer based on arbitrary criteria that U.S. Soccer has manipulated to favor MLS, which is a commercial business partner via SUM, which jointly sells and markets MLS rights combined with rights to U.S. national teams.

-- U.S. Soccer has selectively applied and waived its divisional criteria to suppress competition from the NASL, both against MLS and against the USL.

-- U.S. Soccer has sought to limit competition from the NASL to MLS and USL and now seeks to destroy the NASL by arbitrarily revoking the NASL's Division 2 status for the upcoming 2018 season.

Rocco B. Commisso, chairman of the NASL's board of governors and the principal owner of the New York Cosmos: "The USSF left the NASL no choice except to file this lawsuit. The NASL has taken this step to protect not just the league, but also the game, fans, and everyone with a stake in the future success of professional soccer leagues based in this country."
6 comments about "NASL files Federal antitrust suit against U.S. Soccer ".
  1. don Lamb, September 19, 2017 at 7:50 p.m.

    What an embarrassment. The sooner these clowns disappear, the better.

  2. R2 Dad replied, September 20, 2017 at 1:46 a.m.

    Don, why is this such an affront to your fragile monopolistic sensibilities?

  3. Fire Paul Gardner Now replied, September 20, 2017 at 7:24 p.m.

    Totally agree Don. This is a bunch of self-absorbed narcissists who don't care at all about the game in this country. They just want their way. Fans are voting with their wallets. While a"historic" team like the Cosmos gets 5k a game in a baseball stadium and that clown club in SF gets 2k in its first season, Cincy gets 30k multiple times.

  4. Bob Ashpole, September 20, 2017 at 2:30 a.m.

    I cannot find a copy of the Complaint. I would love to see what their Complaint alleges. I cannot imagine what it says.

  5. Fire Paul Gardner Now replied, September 20, 2017 at 7:21 p.m.

    The complaint can be found here:

  6. Gus Keri, September 20, 2017 at 7:59 a.m.

    I think requiring a league to have 12 clubs to be classified as division II is an arbitrary rule. Let NASL has whatever number of clubs and let them grow the league gradually. If they can't sustain it, they will fold and no need for US soccer to do any thing. At one point, MLS had 10 teams and still classified as division I in this country.

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