MLS Takes World Cup Break (sort of)

Well, for the group stage anyway and by the end of that phase the U.S. should be done, no? Two weeks off is a huge improvement.

Good to see the MLS suits finally grab a clue.

Now, if they could only have one league division.

Here’s today’s press release with the details:

Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber announced today that for the first time in its history, MLS will not play League games during the group phase of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. The group phase includes the first 48 games of the 64-game tournament that begins on June 11, 2010 in South Africa. The last MLS game prior to the World Cup will be played on June 10 and MLS will not schedule any additional League games until after the group phase concludes on June 25. MLS does not plan to schedule games on the days of either World Cup Semifinal nor the World Cup Final.

“The decision to stop League play during the group phase of the 2010 FIFA World Cup is part of MLS’ commitment to deepen its connection with the millions of soccer fans in the United States and Canada,” said MLS Commissioner Don Garber. “The World Cup will be a focal point for all MLS fans and several MLS players will compete with their national teams at the tournament.”

The 2010 MLS Regular Season will again see each team play a 30-game regular season, followed by playoffs among eight qualifying teams. The 2010 season will begin with a single game March 25 and will conclude Oct. 24. The MLS Cup Playoffs will culminate in the championship match, MLS Cup 2010, on Nov. 21.

MLS plans to announce each club’s 2010 home opener in the near future. The complete 2010 MLS schedule will be announced early next year.

Philadelphia Union will play their inaugural season in 2010 as the 16th team in Major League Soccer, joining the Eastern Conference. The two eight-team conferences allow, for the first time in MLS history, clubs to play a balanced schedule – facing each of the other 15 teams twice, once at home, once away. As in previous years, the club with the best record at the end of the regular season will win the Supporters’ Shield, and the MLS Cup playoffs will determine the League’s champion.

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About Nick Green

South Bay-based Los Angeles News Group soccer columnist and blogger Nick Green writes at the 100 Percent Soccer blog at www.insidesocal.com/soccer and craft beer at the Beer Goggles blog at www.insidesocal.com/beer. Cheers!
  • Studs Up

    They are trying. They lightened the calendar for 2 rounds of qualifying this year with LA having a bye twice already.

  • Joseph D’Hippolito

    If soccer in the United States ever develops promotion and relegation, then if Tim Leiweke were a club, he would be Torquay United.

  • Studs Up

    J. D’Hip,

    Tim Lieweke sustains you better than a baby aspirin a day, doesn’t he?