Major League Soccer today lifted the team training moratorium implemented on March 12 and MLS clubs may now submit individual club plans to return to first team training. Individual club plans must be reviewed and approved by the club’s medical staff and local
Full team training will be mandatory for all players as teams take the next step toward a return to match play.
— Atlanta United FC (@ATLUTD) June 4, 2020
Major League Soccer (MLS) is a men’s professional soccer league sanctioned by the United States Soccer Federation which represents the sport’s highest level in the United States and Canada. The league comprises 26 teams—23 in the U.S. and three in Canada—and constitutes one of the major professional sports leagues in both countries. The league plans to expand to 30 teams with the additions of Austin FC and Charlotte in 2021, then Sacramento Republic FC and a St. Louis franchise in 2022.The regular season starts in late February or early March and goes through mid-October, with each team playing 34 games; the team with the best record is awarded the Supporters’ Shield. Fourteen teams compete in the postseason MLS Cup Playoffs through October and November, culminating in the championship game, the MLS Cup. MLS teams also play in domestic competitions against teams from other divisions in the U.S. Open Cup and in the Canadian Championship. MLS teams also compete against continental rivals in the CONCACAF Champions League.With an average attendance of over 20,000 per game, MLS has the third highest average attendance of any sports league in the U.S. after the National Football League (NFL) and Major League Baseball (MLB), and is the seventh highest attended professional soccer league worldwide.Major League Soccer was founded in 1993 as part of the United States’ successful bid to host the 1994 FIFA World Cup. The first season took place in 1996 with ten teams. MLS experienced financial and operational struggles in its first few years: the league lost millions of dollars, teams played in mostly empty American football stadiums, and two teams folded in 2002. Since then, MLS has expanded to 26 teams, soccer-specific stadiums have proliferated around the league, average attendance exceeds that of the National Hockey League (NHL) and National Basketball Association (NBA), the Designated Player Rule allows teams to sign star players such as David Beckham, MLS secured national TV contracts, and the league is now profitable.Instead of operating as an association of independently owned teams, MLS is a single entity in which each team is owned by the league and individually operated by the league’s investors. The investor-operators control their teams as owners control teams in other leagues, and are commonly (but inaccurately) referred to as the team’s owners. The league has a fixed membership like most sports leagues in the United States and Canada, which makes it one of the world’s few soccer leagues that does not use promotion and relegation, a practice that is uncommon in the two countries. MLS headquarters is located in New York City. – READ MORE »
Santiago Leon is the Founder and CEO of the Sports Cast. He covers almost every sport: NFL, NBA, and world soccer. He’s also founder of sleon productions, which he specializes in technology and serves clients with solutions to make their business grow.