MLS Commish: No U.S. WC, no fall-spring MLS schedule

So there, FIFA, take that. And just to drive the point home, MLS Commissioner Don Garber made his comments in Canada:

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Now that the United States failed to land the 2022 World Cup, Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber says his league has no plans to align with football’s international calendar anytime soon.

At the MLS Cup final in November, Garber said “we’re going to do a study” and “we’re telling the world we’re going to begin taking a very serious look at this whole issue.”

Then, on Dec. 2, FIFA voted for Qatar to host the 2022 World Cup instead of the United

This year’s MLS season will run from March 15 to Oct. 23, with playoffs to follow. Most
European leagues are on an August to May/June schedule.

“I don’t think we are going to a winter calendar any time soon,” Garber said on Monday on a visit to Vancouver, which joins MLS this season. “To think about playing in Toronto in January or December, it’s hard to imagine we are going to be able to do that. The fact our league is only 16 years old we don’t yet have that deep, deep commitment from fans to come through thick and thin. I’m not sure we are ready for that. But at some point I think we probably will be.”

FIFA sets aside certain dates for national teams to play. Because MLS also schedules on some of those dates, its teams must play without some stars who away on national-team duty.

“I’m not sure if we are ever going to get full alignment with FIFA’s international calendar,”
Garber said. “That being said . . . there are not enough weeks in our current schedule to really have an ideal schedule. We are going to have to continue to look at expanding our season.”

Garber admitted the FIFA vote was a factor in what he said in November.

“We thought it would be smart to show the international football community that we were open to do some things that would more align with the international confines of the sport,” Garber said. “That is probably less important for us now.”

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  • Studs Up

    I bet most US fans would not want to switch to a Fall-Spring calendar. Run a survey and let’s see the locals think.

    The only thing MLS has to do is not to schedule the idiotic mid-day start times in the summer.


    I have to agree Studs, I am certainly not sold on a Fall-Spring calender. Does soccer really want to be in direct competition with Football and Basketball? It sucks having games and schedules chopped up by international dates, but US soccer also fills a niche. There seems to be a burgeoning market opportunity for part-timers… really talented guys who want to play year-round.

    Anyway…. We’re Americans… have we ever cow-toed to international demands on anything? The rest of the world should switch to our schedule… and start calling it soccer too!!

  • Studs Up

    Arsen Wenger likes to switch to MLS type calendar as well. But let them freeze their stupid asses off. Who cares. The rest of the world has a lot to learn from the MLS/American model. Once they all go bankrupt trying to keep up with the Joneses, the salary cap will become a reality for them as well.