An open letter to Don Garber…a solution to the competitions.

The league has shown progress under your guidance and for this, we thank you. I disagree with some of the strategies used and deployed but the results speak for themselves – the League is growing. One thing I’ve become frustrated with are the League competitions & the search for a Champion - a balanced schedule with a weighted point system, only for more than half the League to enter a playoff scheme makes the regular season almost pointless. With this in mind, I’ve come up with a suggestion/solution for the competitions that MLS competes in...And offer it here for review.

First off, the easy solutions:

CONCACAF Champs: Leave it as is – I believe its run by CONCACAF anyways.

Lamar Hunt US Open Cup: A fantastic competition where a team/club from the US has an opportunity to win. No real suggestion on this competition other than to have it start a little sooner so that it can finish up in June or July which will allow for the Final to be played in a revolving Northern City. This will allow for the Final to be played in different venues and avoid the oppressive heat usually found in the Southern part of the States during the summer. Winner receives auto CONCACAF bid

MLS Cup: Single Table, Balanced Schedule (Home/Away for each team) with the weighted-point-system (No more West/East). This is the Cup that everyone wants – the long-haul test for a true champion. You can’t bide your time in the beginning of the season, enter a playoff system, get hot, & be crowned champ. Winner receives auto Concacaf bid.

At some point, if another division is created, relegation could be introduced to spice up the bottom of the table.

More drawn-out solution:

Supporters Shield: Open only to MLS clubs, will continue with the West/East thing because of travel & to assist in building up rivalries (Supporters could travel). Play begins the same month as the Final for LHUSOC and ends in Nov or Dec and the Final is to be played in a revolving Southern City which allows for different venues & avoidance of the oppressive cold found up North during the winter months. Set up a random draw and in the first round no Club is allowed to travel further than one time-zone (we want Supporters traveling!). The first two rounds could even be regionalized so that there is potential for mass Supporter travel. Both Finals participants earn a bid in CONCACAF so there is incentive for both sides of the bracket.

**If the MLS Cup winner, LHUSOC winner, or Supporters winner is a repeat, the final MLS standings are used to determine who earns a bid to CCL.

That gives three quality domestic competitions for MLS to compete in & 4 berths into CONCACAF to be earned. All trophies would require full effort & there is no slacking one’s way to the crown.

So come on Don, the growth of the League has been fantastic – let’s sort out those competitions!

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