The Sweeper: American Second Division Survives for 2010
As assiduously reported by Brian Quarstad, Duane Rollins and Kartik Krishnaiyer, the United States Soccer Federation and the two leagues seeking Division II status for 2010 in North America appear to have finally reached a compromise.
It appears that the USSF will oversee a league with two conferences featuring the teams committed to the USL and NASL respecitvely. There are many other details rumoured to be part of the deals, and what can become public presumably will in a conference call the USSF is hosting this afternoon with representatives of both leagues.
So, we will have second division soccer here in the United States in 2010 (let us hope we also have first division soccer!). It’s significant that despite the bitterness, the threats of lawsuits, and the tight timeline, that the two leagues have been able to hammer out an interim solution. As we recalled here last week, in the past, this was not always possible, leading to administrative strife tearing soccer apart.
Of course, it already being 2010, we should presume negotiations on hammering out a long-term solution for 2011 will begin shortly. While we await the final details of the interim solution, perhaps one or two who argued the USSF (and MLS) were either dropping the ball or deliberately trying to destroy second division soccer will stay quiet for a little while, though it will take much work again to work things out beyond this year.
- I love world football. One minute Hans Backe is following Sven-Göran Eriksson on his bizarre global career: assisting Sven at Manchester City, Mexico and then as manager at troubled Notts County, and now he’s the head coach of Red Bull New York. Well, he’s prepped for disaster and general weirdness, at least.
- We have been careful to avoid much commentary on MLS’ labour talks here because of our lack of knowledge and insight on the complex situation (Peter Wilt’s prediction of a lockout yesterday aside, but Peter knows far more about MLS than I do). I’d recommend MFUSA’s series as a primer for those wanting to keep up, while Fake Sigi has an interesting opinion piece today on the state of MLS and its business model, quite eloquently describing MLS as built to last in its present complicated, but carefully constructed condition: “It’s a brilliantly conceived business entity built with decades of pro sports litigation in the USA in mind. It’s something that the majority of people don’t understand, but under the hood it’s sexy as hell and built to last. It’s the corporate entity version of a rotary engine or a Macintosh computer. It took the old way of doing things, looked at the problems that had plagued other leagues, and came up with an innovative, new way of dealing with those issues while retaining a ton of eccentricities that few understand.”
- Of random interest: photos of the 15 lowest ranked UEFA nations’ national stadiums.
The Sweeper appears every weekday, and once at the weekend. For more rambling and links throughout the day every day, follow your editor Tom Dunmore @pitchinvasion on Twitter.