Soccer - Will MLS ever rival NHL or NBA?


#1

OK, it’s a light hearted question. The big three of NHL,NBA and NFL will always reign supreme in in terms of mass appeal.



However , the acid test will be when the MLS gets stars at their peak rather than those taking a late paycheck. David Beckham was miles better at his peak but LA Galaxy got a media star who was winding down on the field. Similarly Thierry Henry is no longer able to cut it in Europe. It used to be the case in the English Premier League that we only got superstars at the end of their careers. Then came the TV money! Now the top matches are subscription only and we get the cream of the players.



I think that the standard of players from the US is continually rising. Players like Brad Friedel and Clint Dempsey play in the Premier League. The national team were excellent in the 2009 Confederations Cup and it took Brazil on full boost to beat them. They will reach a semi-final in a World Cup soon.



The domestic game appears to be quite healthy with decent attendences at games. It’s very popular with school age kids but seemingly less so at college age.( BTW - the popularity of college sports on TV baffles us here in the UK! ). Perhaps one day there will be huge ratings for Texas A&M versus Georgia Tech in the “Soccer Bowl”? Who knows?


#2

I messed up! This should be in General Discussion. Sorry , System admin!


#3

I doubt if soccer will ever reach such heights in the U.S. Football/gridiron is king here. Around where I live soccer is seen as something that you play when you’re 5 or 6 years old since it’s presumed that it’s not as rough as football is and therefore there’s less of a chance of your kid getting hurt. Once the kids get a bit older like 8 or 9, then many start playing football, some still stick with soccer though. I played soccer until I was about 7, then I started playing football, which I enjoyed much, much more as there’s much physicality involved. That’s not to say that soccer isn’t a demanding game to play, it certainly is, you need to be in phenomenal shape cardio wise to make through 90 minutes of play, but hits are harder and occur far more often in American football.

Soccer is slowly getting more popular here, but it’s still well behind the NFL,MLB,NBA,NHL,PGA,NASCAR,college football/basketball. I don’t see it making much headway. The only time the average American pays any attention to it is when the World Cup comes around, but even then it’s not nearly as big a deal here as it is everywhere else in the world. I’m pretty sure that if the U.S. ever won the World Cup, you would here a collective “meh” from most Americans.


#4

Whether this is supposed to be in General Discussion or not it still has not a single thing to do with cars - so one wonders why it is here.

That said, soccer has already made it in the US. If you think that’s wrong then you don’t hang out with all that many 20-somethings, many of whom played soccer well past the age of 6 or 7.

It will never rival the major mass market sports like the NFL or even college football and as someone who loves the “beautiful game” I say thank G for that. I’d rather sport keep looking like sport rather than prime time marketing nonsense. It is a niche market sport in the same way that the NHL is a niche market sport.


#5

I boobed! Can it be moved by the System admin please?


#6

I would think that baseball would be part of the “big three”, not hockey.
No, we’ve been hearing for 30+ years how soccer is going to be HUGE here. Not going to happen. Not enough action or scoring. I think your assessment of MLS ’ health is exaggerated. They aren’t doing particularly well at all.


#7

It might approach the NHL, but no further.
First tier: NFL/NBA/MLB
Second tier: College football/basketball
Third tier: NHL, maybe eventually MLS


#8

“Not enough action or scoring”

Ok, that’s loopy. Soccer is all action. I have a hard time watching US football b/c everytime something happens the action stops so everyone can catch their breath and pat each other on the a!@. Maybe many people don’t understand the action well enough to make it interesting - but its all action.

And…if you drop the weird scoring system in football (i.e. only touchdowns count and are worth a point) you’d actually find soccer and football have similar levels of scoring. I can’t watch a basketball game until the last 2 minutes b/c there’s too much scoring. Nothing becomes really important until the very end.