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10 Things to Watch for in 2010 for US Soccer

  • Jan 11, 2010
This list of players, teams, events, etc. are what we should watch for to help build soccer in the US during 2010.
2010 FIFA World Cup
I don't feel much is need to be explained here. The US National team has done great is the last year from beating the top ranked team in the world, Spain, to making it to the final of the FIFA Confederations Cup. This is really a pivotal point for US Soccer to show the world that the US can walk the walk on the pitch. 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa
MLS Collective Bargaining Agreement
In a couple weeks the MLS CBA will expire and this has been the talk of the blogs, podcasts and forums of MLS. I feel that the MLS will come to an agreement with the player's union in time for the first game of the season that's not important. What is important is what is in the CBA. I really feel that they need to up the salary cap for the players. This will help to bring big name players from around the world to play in the league and stop our home grown talent from leaving to go to Europe.
2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cup Bids
The US is currently bidding to host the FIFA World Cup in either 2018 or 2022. I would love for 2018 but realistically if the US wins a bid it'll probably be 2022. If the US can get the World Cup to come to the states this will be a big step for growing soccer in America. Not only will it promote the sport in the US, if the US National Team can play well in the 2010 World Cup and if MLS can grow, a World Cup in the states would be a great way to put icing on the cake. The US needs a World Cup in the near future and in December of this year we will know. You can help too! Check out the website and sign the petition! US Soccer World Cup Bid
Landon Donovan
Landon is currently on loan from the LA Galaxy to the English team Everton. He has gone on loan and trial to teams in Europe in the past and they were proven unsuccessful. This is probably Donovan's last time he can try to shine in big league such as the Premier League. He just played a game with Everton against Arsenal and was able to get an assist off of his corner kick. So far so good.
Philadelphia Union
The newest team to be added to Major League Soccer, Philadelphia needs to prove to America that they are not a typical expansion team but rather an expansion team like Seattle. Seattle had an amazing first season in the league, selling out every game and being considered "Soccer City USA". If Philly can do the same not only will it help out the team and the city, but the league as well.
Stuart Holden
I would have to say that this is the year for Stuart Holden. Word on the street is he is going on trial to Bolton in the English Premier League. This is great for him in that it gives Holden the chance to prove he can plan on a higher level. I don't think he'll stay over there though. I think Holden will end up back at the Houston Dynamo but I truly feel Holden will start to make more of a name for himself throughout the league and one the National Team.
Jozy Altidore
Jozy, Jozy, Jozy! I love this guy. I feel that his is a great player and truly deserves to be where he is at. He could use some improvements on the defensive side but other than that he is a good player. I look at Jozy as the future of US Soccer. I don't know if he can hold that weight on his shoulders, but as a young striker for the US National Team, fans are looking towards him to help put the US on the map.
Seattle Sounders FC
This team has made the Emerald City shine. The ownership of this team in the MLS did a great job last season. 2/3rds of the seat were season tickets and every game was sold out. The team made it to the playoff and really put themselves on the map. Oh, did I mention it was their first season? But this year is just as important as last. I feel Seattle needs to prove that what happened last year wasn't just a first season high. They need to make sure that the fans still keep the buzz!
See the full review, "Seattle Rises to the Occasion!".
Freddy Adu
Freddy Adu is another player who I feel has a ton of heart. He has gone through a couple low points in his career while in Europe and this year is the most important year for him to prove his is a top athlete. He was put on loan to Aris in Greece and needs to show not only Greece, but the world that he is a good player. I think this is going to be very hard for him by deciding to go with Aris FC and NOT HULL CITY WITH JOZY ALTIDORE!!!!! Unfortunately there was a ton of hype for him. In fact way too much hype and the US expects him to be the savior of soccer for America. Well, that'll never happen but I do believe he can prove himself.
See the full review, "What's with Freddy Adu?".
USSF Division 2
Last week the US Soccer Federation took the two lower level leagues that hate each other and made them work out a deal where they'll be one league together so that the US Soccer Federation can have a second division for US Soccer. This is great because that means that there could potentially be 2 leagues with promotion and relegation just like in Europe. It's going to be very interesting to see what happens with this, but I have faith!

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January 12, 2010
I really am looking forward to this event. You may want to add to your list that this event is going to be the first sporting event broadcast in 3D!
January 12, 2010
Ya that's going to be cool to watch the World Cup games in 3D. I still think it's kind of a gimmick to get people to watch though. But who knows, I thought Avatar was going to suck in 3D and I was completely wrong.
January 12, 2010
It's actually not a gimmick but a kick-off to 3D programming on TV. Manufacturers are gearing up to sell them and two 3D stations are due to launce in June.
January 12, 2010
I'm undecided on promotion and relegation being good things for MLS (it might be able to make it work in a way that most leagues can't) but it would certainly be a huge change it happened.
January 12, 2010
I'm actually a big fan of the promotion/relegation idea. I don't know about you but if I was a fan of a team in a lower league that had the chance to move up to the top league I would totally rally behind them. I have no idea if this would actually happen but the way I see it , it seems like a good way to get people going to games and supporting their local team. I feel like it could promote the sport in towns around the US with smaller named teams. The only thing that would suck is if the team you route for was relegated.
January 12, 2010
In theory it works that way, but in practice it leads to massive inequalities in the playing field. Look at every major foreign league, and you'll see an elite handful of teams (or even single team) who almost always win and are virtually never relegated. It partially has to do with the salary cap, or lack thereof, but the structure almost guarantees a soccer aristocracy.

It's great fun in Championship Manager, though. Can't lie about that.
January 12, 2010
True. It seems in almost all the leagues in Europe you have the "Big 4" or "Big 2" but to be honest with you I'd rather have a league that flourishes like the Premiership or La Liga with a few dominating team then a league that is barely making it because good American players leave and great European players retire into the MLS. Just saying, it has been proven to work in the leagues in Europe, why not do what they do? Other than that Championship Manager is awesome!
January 12, 2010
In my view, the things that make those leagues flourish are the hundred-plus years of history combined with the local roots of the clubs. Having hundreds of clubs (with promotion and relegation) helps create that history. But ever since the Champion's League money explosion of the mid/late 90's, I think that it's been largely a negative.

Just ask Leeds United.
January 12, 2010
Ya you're absolutely right. Hundreds of years did make those leagues the way they are today. Not to get off subject but I think that's what most people in the US are missing. They expect the MLS to be this amazing league like over in England, yet the MLS has only be around for like 15 years. If you ask me, they've done great for only 15 years. It's going to be really interesting so see what happens in the next 15 years.
January 11, 2010
Wow, Ryan, you sure are a soccer aficionado!  Thanks for schooling me on soccer.  I'm sharing this awesome list on twitter! :)
January 11, 2010
Thanks! I thought this was going to be a short little list. I was wrong haha
About the list creator
Ryan Weiss ()
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Follow Me On Twitter: @RyanWeiss   Read My Blog:Virtual Ryan      Born and raised in So Cal. Go Dodgers!!! I went to LMU and studied Business Admin/Marketing. I love Soccer … more
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