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Things I don't understand about MLS

The things I do not understand about life are far too numerous to enumerate here but near the top of the list at this moment is the weird, wonderful and mysterious path by which MLS wends it's labyrinthine way torturously through the business of football, or, if you prefer, soccer.

For example, why, if all player contracts are described as being between the player and a "single entity", ie: Major League Soccer, has the most affected body, MLS itself, remained thunderously silent on this issue from the outset? Surely every MLS contract signed is called into scrutiny by Camilo's transgression and surely MLS must have an opinion on that. What has MLS possibly got to gain by leaving the Whitecaps flapping in the wind over an issue that has as much to do with the league as with the club?

Secondly, our new-found friend from south of the forty-ninth, Trolltosin, has raised some interesting questions about the league's involvement in the Sounder's recent roster activity. Comments such as "...MLS obviously helped to keep Eddie Johnson happy and in MLS" and "MLS could make it right and let you have the magic allocation money. They did it for us, by all accounts in Seattle, for Eddie. There is no way that DC United gave us 650K in allocation for him. Yet, by most reports close to the Sounders, that is what we got."

Anecdotal evidence and unsupported, but it does raise questions which initially surfaced for me when Maximiliano Urruti moved from Toronto to Portland in what appeared to be a sweetheart deal for the Timbers.

Similar questions surround the move of Mike Magee to Chicago from the Galaxy.

Are these moves the result of market forces or the manipulations of MLS ensuring that their pet clubs thrive?

Finally, these thoughts from Steven Goff, The Washington Post's "Soccer Insider" (August 5, 2013 - http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/soccer-insider/wp/2013/08/05/clint-dempsey-signing-demonstrates-mlss-growth-and-immaturity) on the Clint Dempsey move to Seattle make me wonder if the gloved hand of MLS is not to be detected in the recent landmark signing of Michael Bradley by TFC: "MLS’s immature side also revealed itself again, inviting scrutiny of the way the league conducts business. U.S. national team players who sign (or re-sign) with MLS are supposed to go through the allocation order — a peculiar mechanism in itself but one we’ve reluctantly accepted into our homes. There is a loophole, however. It’s not listed in MLS’s roster rules and regulations available to the public, and as far as we can tell, has only been implemented one other time (Reyna signing with the New York Red Bulls in 2007). Because Dempsey is a designated player (earning in excess of $368,000 annually), he was exempt from the allocation order...Salary cap specifics and allocation money remain foggy. ...Sports Illustrated’s report that MLS paid the $9 million transfer fee for Dempsey opens another can of worms."

Who paid Bradley's transfer fee, MLS or TFC? Was due process and the stipulated order followed when Toronto acquired Bradley? I don't know that it wasn't but, quite frankly, it all makes me wonder. Lot's of questions and lots of things I don't understand.

The bottom line for me is, are the Vancouver Whitecaps getting the support they deserve from MLS in the Camilo affair or are they a lesser consideration for the suits in New York and being marginalized at the expense of the fashionable, big market teams that Don Gerber and his cronies seem to bend over backwards for?

Is this any way to run a business?




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