Level of play: anyone else surprised?

Discussion in 'MLS: General' started by MightyMouse, Apr 17, 2006.

  1. MightyMouse

    MightyMouse BigSoccer Supporter

    Jun 19, 2003
    Island paradise east of the mainland
    Club:
    FC Barcelona
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I am shocked by this years start of the MLS season. I have watched some very entertaining matches and some quality on both offense and defense. The New York Redbulls vs DC United game was a fantastic game and incredible atmosphere. The Chivas USA vs LA Galaxy game was also both incredible on and off the field. I don't remember MLS coming out the gates so strongly in a long time from the very start of the season. Many of these games have been played at a playoff pace, in other words, I didn't think these games were played without urgency at all. There were flying tackles, hard fouls, full blown sprints for loose balls, people fighting hard on the field, and the crowds have loved it.

    This just makes me think even more that MLS has turned the corner for the better. Corporate sponsorship like never before, new ownership, tv deal, a rise in talent level, big company and player interest in the league with actual quotes. I'm loving this season, it was probably the biggest turn around off the field I've ever seen and all the positive changes are reflecting on the field. Great time to be an MLS fan.
     
  2. Q*bert Jones III

    Q*bert Jones III The People's Poet

    Feb 12, 2005
    Woodstock, NY
    Club:
    DC United
    HATE agrees.
     
  3. Well done. We need to have more POSITIVE threads like this. I am in full agreement with your comments.
     
  4. Blackmail

    Blackmail New Member

    Oct 10, 2005
    Well, i think it's been a mixed bag. The fields look great, the new stadiums look great, the crowds have been excellent.

    The actual play has been good and bad, there have been some great goals and good passing at times, other times there has been some terrible play. Columbus-Chicago may have been one of the worst MLS matches I've ever seen, the Crew looked like a rec team. Don't get me wrong, I love the league and watch all the games and buy jerseys and go to games when I can (I don't live in an MLS city but I've been to about 20 games in my life).
     
  5. FuzzyForeigner

    Oct 29, 2003
    WA
    Club:
    Seattle
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    man i think my 2 eurosnob friends, after watching the season opener, the Chivas-Galaxy game, and the DC-RBNY game are getting hooked. They of course like the RBNY jerseys and they think it feels more european.

    I am loving this start. Good attendance, good quality, nice goals, nice coverage too, MLS ultras are coming a long way.

    On a pessimistic note though, we have some major hurdles later in season: NBA playoffs, football, WC, etc..
     
  6. MightyMouse

    MightyMouse BigSoccer Supporter

    Jun 19, 2003
    Island paradise east of the mainland
    Club:
    FC Barcelona
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The level of everything in the LA vs Chivas game was rediculous though. Fantastic game, awsome finish, suspense, loud crowd, full stadium, some controversy, list goes on and on. I can't wait till Chicago gets that stadium open, we could witness something very rediculous there as well! Some of the very best fan photos are of the Chicago Ultras.
     
  7. superdave

    superdave Member+

    Jul 14, 1999
    VB, VA
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Two things have stuck out to me...crisp tackling, and more than the minimum pieces of flair per game.

    The matches still have alot of that early-season muckabout feel, but a bit less.
     
  8. Foosinho

    Foosinho New Member

    Jan 11, 1999
    New Albany, OH
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    C'mon. That match was easily better than the best game of the season back in 1996, in terms of the quality of play. Seriously. Some of you guys should go watch tape of 10 year old MLS games.

    Lots of nice one-touch passing at times this year. The sophistication continues to grow each season.
     
  9. PJohnson

    PJohnson Member+

    DC United
    Dec 16, 2004
    South Dakota
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'm NOT surprised by the level of play so far this season. The level of play has been getting a little better each year in my opinion.

    The season is off to a great start in general. The league average attendence for the first three weeks is 19,073. And the atmosphere has been very good in some of these matches. I would single out DC vs Red Bull on opening day at RFK. The Kansas City vs Columbus match on opening day had a good crowd that was into the match. The Houston crowds have been great. And of course the Chivas vs Galaxy match Saturday night was as good an atmosphere as we have seen in MLS.
     
  10. MightyMouse

    MightyMouse BigSoccer Supporter

    Jun 19, 2003
    Island paradise east of the mainland
    Club:
    FC Barcelona
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I pray the low attendance in KC was really due to the tornado warnings and not lack of fan interest warnings.
     
  11. Calexico77

    Calexico77 Member

    Sep 19, 2003
    Mid-City LA
    Club:
    Los Angeles Galaxy
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Sorry to throw a big bucket of Ice Water on this thread, but I'm not feeling it.

    I will say that this season is probably light years over where we were a couple of seasons ago. And by-in-large the crowds have been WAYYY ahead of expectations.

    But exactly what is known at this point?

    1) Chivas is *better*, but how much better? They beat the living hell out of RSL, but their other two games have shown some big mistakes. I will say, though, that their supporters, and their style of play make every game entertaining.

    2) Besides KC, is any team *that* good? Welcome back, Parity. Except for RSL, the entire Western Conference is a wash. Dallas is maybe incrementally better, but not dominating. New England? I thought they were an offensive power house!! 1 Goal in 3 games? Is it because they've been on the road? Will the Galaxy be able to beat anyone except RSL and Chivas? Who knows.


    3) Crowds in NY and Houston are really helping the league average. But how long with NY last? But KC & Colorado? Let's hope KC makes their sale public, and we can get some butts in those seats. Is Colorado just waiting for their new stadium?



    And in terms of quality in the league - I still am less excited about one or two new players than I would be if we had some top-notch coaches. How BIG of a deal would it be if Klinsmann came to coach in LA? Just SOMEONE other than the same old retreads.
     
  12. REMOVED

    REMOVED New Member

    Jul 22, 2004
    The first 10-12 games were nearly unwatchable. Last few games seem a little better. At least there was some exciting finishes recently. And LD started to show some interest. Sometime it is hard appreciate how much intensity they play with when you solely watch the games on tv. Until BV
     
  13. SankaCofie

    SankaCofie Member

    Aug 8, 2000
    Skorgolia
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Nat'l Team:
    Ecuador
    if I were color-blind and didn't speak english you could have easily convinced me that the LA-Chivas game was in France, Spain, Argentina... wherever.

    LA attacked with alot of flair and Chivas defended with confidence too. it was great. none of the needless fouls you sometimes see... but good tackling and one or two tactical fouls... like watching Regan give Donovan the old clothsline which made me very very happy.
     
  14. Dirt McGirt

    Dirt McGirt Member+

    Jun 20, 2005
    Phoenix, AZ
    Club:
    Seattle Sounders
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I think the biggest hurdles will be the heat and the WC.

    This season thus far has been outstanding. MLS has come along way.
     
  15. Magpie Maniac

    Magpie Maniac Member

    Dec 28, 2001
    North Carolina, USA
    Club:
    Newcastle United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'm elated with the season so far. Some teams are stronger than others, but I like the fact that MLS has more parity than say the EPL. With the exception of a few surprises now and then, the Premiership is just getting too predictable.

    Several of the goals so far have been pure quality. The LA/Chivas second half was riveting. Adu has been fun to watch. [ducks for cover] Maybe they're all trying to catch Arena's eye before the buzzer. ;)
     
  16. PJohnson

    PJohnson Member+

    DC United
    Dec 16, 2004
    South Dakota
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    One more thing. When the league announced that the winner of the Supporter's Shield would be awarded one of the automatic spots in the CONCACAF Champion's Cup a lot of people applauded it as a step in the right direction. But the consensus on Big Soccer was that it would have little impact on making the regular season a meaningful competition.

    I disagreed with the majority then. And I still think that MLS clubs that aspire to International competition will take the regular season very seriously. Because lets face it, the playoffs are a crap shoot. Injuries, suspensions, or a poor run of form can all lead to the top clubs being knocked out. And LA Galaxy proved again last year that a hot team can make a run to the cup. So the best way to make sure you quality for the Champion's Cup is to win the Supporter's Shield. And I think that has raised the level of intensity.
     
  17. dawgpound2

    dawgpound2 Member

    Mar 3, 2001
    Los Angeles, CA
    Whoever commented about the Galaxy/Chivas game could have been a French, English or Spanish league game if one didn 't know better was right on the money!

    MLS' level of play has been steadily rising, but the atmosphere of games translating especially on TV was always lacking. Well, that superclasico was just that over the tube. Unreal!

    MLS is on its way, there can be no doubt of that.

    Remember in the older days of the league when a team would bring in a foreign Peter Canero-type. He was expected to turn the team around and dominate since he'd be coming in from what "had to be" much greater leagues like the Championship or Scotland, etc.

    Well, and this is no slight whatsoever to Canero, now a guy like that comes in and hopes to BREAK INTO the lineup.


    edited for speeeeling
     
  18. JohnR

    JohnR Member+

    Jun 23, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    This year is the most uneven I have seen in a while. DCU has a lot of attacking talent, and L.A. is fun, too. Those are teams with flair. On the other hand, Red Bull is useless and the Crew may well prove to be the worst MLS squad this decade. Plus, Real Salt Lake ain't no joy, either.

    Hell, the Fire fielded Mapp and the Three Stooges in midfield this Sunday, and they still comfortably outplayed the opposition. But you're talking a team where a 3rd Division German guy is an instant starter.
     
  19. Brownswan

    Brownswan New Member

    Jun 30, 1999
    Port St. Lucie, FL
    You mean they actually got past the gridiron confusion of lines at R-E and followed the match? Open-minded lot, aren't they? That said the LA-Chivas match was one gorgeous show: a fast-paced match in a terrific stadium that was sold out. I'm glad they got to see that one.
     
  20. jammybastard

    jammybastard Member

    Oct 7, 2003
    Flyoverland
    I'm glad someone brought this up.
    I subsribed to Direct Kick for the first time because of the quality of play I saw the first week of games. That said after watching a winter of EPL, La Liga and Italian play the MLS looked very slow.
    This was reinforced by the DCU vs. Dynamo game this past weekend where DCU had all sorts of time to screw around with the ball, like Adu's 2 attempts on goal, and not have to worry about tackles flying in or a quick counter attack.
    The simple answer is that MLS is definately getting better, but it still has a ways to go.
     
  21. PJohnson

    PJohnson Member+

    DC United
    Dec 16, 2004
    South Dakota
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The DC vs Houston match was not shown on Direct Kick. How were you able to see the match?
     
  22. Brownswan

    Brownswan New Member

    Jun 30, 1999
    Port St. Lucie, FL
    That's weird, because I watched a good part of the 2nd half of Liverpool-Balckburn, and I was stunned to see the room players had in midfield, compared with MLS., where a receiving player is quickly closed down.
     
  23. MightyMouse

    MightyMouse BigSoccer Supporter

    Jun 19, 2003
    Island paradise east of the mainland
    Club:
    FC Barcelona
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    The Chivas / LA match was so freaking fast I thought I was watching Copa Libertadores or a Champions League match.
     
  24. Magpie Maniac

    Magpie Maniac Member

    Dec 28, 2001
    North Carolina, USA
    Club:
    Newcastle United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    It was on HDnet.
     
  25. PJohnson

    PJohnson Member+

    DC United
    Dec 16, 2004
    South Dakota
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Well thank you Mr. Helper. :rolleyes: I already know that. I was attempting to find out if the guy who claimed to watch the match on Direct Kick was talking out of his a$$ or not.
     

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