New York Red Bulls coach, excuse me, I mean Sporting Director and manager Bruce Arena recently was critical about parity in MLS making the league less than scintillating. Arena went on to mention the fact that teams that are dynasties like the New York Yankees add to the interest of a league.
Couldn’t agree more, yet it’s not the first time this subject has been broached.
Arena mentioned the early years as having more teams with personality like Tampa Bay Mutiny (now contracted) and his DC United teams.
Lets not forget the importance of foreign talent in the early years and how individual players in certain markets defined teams. In DC it was Marco Etcheverry and his clear influence…All eyes were drawn to El Diablo and without his input the team would not have had the same personality. In Tampa it was Carlos ‘El Pibe’ Valderrama whose mop hair combined with innate sense and passing skills as a player gave his team major personality. Which gets back to the point that the league needs more personality players who generally are the technical ones, the ones who fans come to watch because they might encounter the unexpected.
There won’t be any dynasty in MLS until teams become privatized. In the meantime coaches like Arena will continue to try to find ways to make their teams unique and different. It’s a tough job.
As for me, I am glad Da Bruce is in MLS, he himself is motivating other coaches and franchises ……..Here are my weekend conference championship predictions.
Houston over Colorado
New England over DC United…please check out my special MLS Cup Playoff preview Saturday November 4th at 12:00 pm on 790AM radio The Sports Animal………..