The Minnesota United and MLS mailbag is back this week with an emailed question from a Twitter follower and a question of my own for Loons supporters on my feed:
Q. How incredibly jumbled will the world of international soccer be because of the pandemic? Will some MLS players prefer to stay in their home countries, or would they maybe become full-time players in the USA. – Brook from Burnsville.
There is no way to predict just what will happen, in Europe or South America, just as there’s no way to predict what the virus will do from here. I’m sure there will be a few players who will re-evaluate the world and their lives from a new perspective as this continues and question what they’re doing so far away from family, friends and home.
But here’s one thing to remember: Compared to many leagues worldwide, MLS is as solid as you get as far as ownership and financially. Until a lot of teams and leagues in South America and is lower divisions across Europe, players know that the league will move forward once we’re through most of this pandemic and even though there will be negotiations around pay cuts while we’re in the middle of it, they know the checks will keep coming.
That will be particularly true, I’d think, on what happens with Emanuel Reynoso and his Boca Juniors team eventually. You might remember your MNUFC has had some interest in him for a while.
No way to tell how this will impact the game worldwide, but I’ve got to think we’ll see many leagues and teams take a big financial hit and some teams might disappear, just like you’re seeing in other businesses. MLS for sure will take a hit compare to other American leagues like NFL, NBA and MLS just because so much of their revenue depends on gameday and the gate with ticket sales, concessions, etc.
It will be interesting to see how MLS teams might prosper in the worldwide free-agent market because of financial problems elsewhere once the proverbial smoke clears, whenever that might be.
Meanwhile, MLS is taking small steps to start its road back to training and playing. Today is the first day players can start working out individually on their team facility's outdoor fields. Four at a time can work out separated into separate quadrants. MNUFC officials have submitted their plan to Gov. Tim Walz's office and the league and last I heard late yesterday were waiting to hear back for approval of that plan.
Next step for MLS teams: In a couple weeks if all goes well, small group workouts and after that presumably team training sessions.
The league last month extended the moratorium on resuming games until at least June 8 after it suspended the season March 12.
Here's a question I asked my followers and got answers back.
Q, Will you be as interested and excited watch Loon and MLS games without supporters as you would be at Allianz Field or watching games with fans in the stands from home?
Still interested and very excited for MLS return...rarely had time to get to games, so TV viewing was the norm. It will be more interesting to see how players respond to quiet stadiums. -- @MattCof29912209
I planned my life around watching the preseason games in Portland and those basically had no fans for non PTFC games. -- @collinsolberg
The fans add atmosphere, so I'll miss them. But I've watched two online Loons games that were just FIFA20 simulations, so apparently I'll take them any way I can get them. -- @DannyBlond
There will be no games. Period. -- @GordonMrWright
Seeing them play will help the annoyance but there still isn’t any replacement for atmosphere. That’s why I feel in love with the Bundesliga rather than the EPL. -- @alfvebe
100% yes since I don’t watch in person anyway. They can pump in some crowd noise right? -- @AdamStreets1
While supporters add atmosphere, it’s the game that I’ve always loved -- @ErickRoen
I just want to see them play, regardless if there are fans in the stadium. -- @litzinger