Thursday, March 5, 2009

USL dominance

Who are these guys?

Did a USL side reach the semifinals of the CONCACAF Champions League? The same tournament that saw 1, 2, 3, 4.... 5 MLS teams flame out in their own spectacular way?

I don't get it, really. There are former MLS players on the team, which is led by a former MLS coach, all supposedly banished to the USL, all of a shot at reaching the Club World Cup.


JkR said...

All over the world, small teams make long runs in cup tournaments.

That's pretty much why they exist. Of course they seldom win, but when they do, they become legends.

It's a nice story. But, they played 30 games in 2008. The MLS clubs that bombed out were all playing 45-50 games, and couldn't keep up. The rosters can't withstand it.

Anonymous said...

"All over the world, small teams make long runs in cup tournaments"

True in their Open Cups but NOT in the various Champions Leagues.

And look up your facts both USL teams played over 45 games in 2008 fixture congestion is a MLS excuse but it only works if your the only one congested with fixtures!

Anonymous said...

Exactly. The fixture congestion excuse came up during the group stage of the tournament, and was quickly squashed because the USL teams had played around the same amount of games as the MLS teams. Not only that but Montreal and Puerto Rico actually played more games with less days of rest in between during the group stage than MLS teams did. Stop with the excuses already, it's pathetic.

Anonymous said...

Another reason for Steven Cohen to make fun of the MLS.

Congrats to the Islanders!

East River said...

LB, You should know the Islanders have been around in their current form for 5 years now and were around back in the 90's before being disbanded. Of course the Impact were founded in 1993. Both clubs have reserve teams that play in their country's lower divisions and both have youth academies. In other words they are well founded organizations and USL does not get enough credit for having competitive teams. USL-2 and USL-1 have consitently beat up on MLS teams playing their reserves or even first teamers. PPl just did not think these guys could beat teams from other countries first divisions. But they have won their games at home and on the road. MLS teams for some reason fail to do either year after year.

Last night's game was crazy and I really have been convinced to pay USL more attention. I think MLS be hurt by this attention as fans from Latin American and the Carribean may turn their attention to USL more then MLS since their teams were beaten by these clubs. USL has clearly earn its respect and you really have to question how much respect to give the MLS Cup winners and playoff teams can not hold their own in the region's big dance.

Anonymous said...

It's probably as simple as the
USL teams are playing their A
squad and going out to win and
the MLS teams are not.

JkR said...

Hey anonymous, PRI's wiki page says 30. Sorry I didn't dig any further.

My point stands on the MLS teams who bombed out. They didn't have the roster size and strength to compete in everything they were in.

Congrats to PRI for overcoming what they have. MLS needs to stock witheir rosters with more mid level pros like those in USL. They now seem to have 8-12 solid pros, and then too much cheap roster filler.

JkR said...

Champions league winners include Porto(2), Notts Forest(2), Steaua Bucharest, Aston Villa, Celtic, Red Star Belgrade. Good teams but not giants. (Perhaps giants in their own neighborhoods).

Euro cup winners 2006: Greece

David rises up and beats Goliath. Small teams making long runs in cup tournaments.

JkR said...

Should be:

Euro cup winners 2004: Greece

Anonymous said...

JkR, some of the teams that you listed won the Champions League more than 20 years ago, when the soccer landscape was completely different in Europe. That's Nottingham Forest of the 70s and 80s, who were practically the best team in England when they won those titles, we're not talking about Nottingham Forest of 2009 here. Same goes with Steau Bucharest, which was a huge team in the 80s. Comparing the Impact and the Islanders to those teams is completely ridiculous because neither team has ever been considered a powerhouse, the way some of the teams you listed have.

JkR said...

Notts forest was in league 2 just 2 years before winning Europe. They had a brief run, but have spent a lot more time not in the top division than in it.