Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Enough With The Bullshit . . .

Music folks, allow me to switch gears for a minute . . .this is for the soccer crowd:

This Sunday afternoon my beloved New York RedBulls will be playing in the MLS Cup Final for the first time in team history, and apparently the soccerati in this country are up in arms and sick over the idea of a team with a mediocre regular season record being considered Champions. All week I've had to listen to and read spewed bile about MLS needing to change to a single-table format and eliminate the playoffs. To call it frustrating would be an understatement.

To make it clear, my opinion has ALWAYS been that the Supporters' Shield winners should be recognized as that year's Champions, with the MLS Cup being our version of the Carling Cup and US Open Cup, our FA Cup.

MLS can't go single table without promotion/relegation. The end of the regular season would have been unwatchably dull and unimportant because no one would have had anything to play for after Columbus locked the Shield up. Instead, we had great games to watch, with 6 teams fighting for 2 playoff spots, and the better teams jostling for seeding. Until the USL & MLS merge (never) and/or we have 30 teams (maybe for grandchildren), MLS CANNOT GO SINGLE TABLE.

The problem is not the current league structure. The problem is the fans. The fans continue to go along with the league mandate and give all the glory to the MLS Cup winner. If the fans gave the accolades to the Shield winner, this wouldn't be a discussion. People bitch about this non-stop...but where was all the "Congratulations Columbus Crew" talk when they took the Supporters' Shield? NOWHERE. It's bullshit. People cry about the possibility of NY being Champions, yet fail to recognize that the trophy they're begging for already exists, but they just fail to acknowledge it properly. You don't like the idea of a 10-11-9 team being Champions? Well blame yourselves because since 1996, you've all failed to celebrate the regular season's best team in a way they deserve.

I stood in Nevada Smith's last Saturday night and witnessed first-hand the greatest scene of fan passion this league has EVER produced. I saw grown men shed tears, strangers embrace and people sing and dance in the middle of a Manhattan street because they were experiencing something that they never thought possible. It's an absolute fucking shame that the rest of the country is trying their hardest to poison that feeling.

No comments: