MLS adds another city to its expansion list

The MLS version of economic promotion is ignoring no markets it seems. SI.com's Brian Straus adds Indianapolis to the list of potential MLS expansion markets. Along with Phoenix as another late addition, that brings the total of cities prepared to meet MLS's application deadline to a dozen. What this means in the big picture sense is a good question.

MLS would point to increased demand and the strength of the league. They may be right, but it's also an established story in American pro soccer. Teams with ambition bide their time in the lower divisions, waiting for the opportunity to pay an expansion fee and make the jump. We've seen enough examples already to know how this works for MLS. We also know what it does to the leagues these teams leave.

If you're not a fan of how MLS does business, this is just more evidence. If you're a fan of a team in that lower division uninterested or unable to make the jump, you probably wonder what's happening to your league. The NASL's winter of discontent certainly added to that feeling of destabilization. The MLS reserve teams playing in the USL might not be the preference of fans of the independent teams.

Now we add Indy Eleven, initially a small market success story. Like San Diego, it fits a version of the MLS model. They don't have teams in the four major leagues. There's already support for pro soccer. The fit makes sense. Is it even an issue that it also makes sense for the NASL and the USL?

The San Diego Union Tribune's Kevin Acee on San Diego's MLS bid. The Detroit Free Press's George Sipple outlines that city's bid. The Guardian's Matthew Hall explains the public money for stadiums issue for some MLS expansion bids. St Louis Business Journal's Brian Feldt talks to SC STL vice-chairman Jim Kavanaugh about the St Louis bid and the importance of having funding in place.

Soccer America's Ridge Mahoney on the USMNT's primary focus in 2017. FIFA.com has the news that Dennis Lawrence is the new coach of Trinidad & Tobago. Goal.com's Jon Arnold lists players who should be under consideration for a Mexico call-up. FourFourTwo's Cesar Hernandez explains the importance of Tigres signing Chilean player Eduardo Vargas from Hoffenheim.

ESPN FC's Luke O'Farrell uses Everton as his example for a successful January in the transfer market. World Soccer Talk explains why Bundesliga clubs spent so much in January. Inside World Football's Andrew Warshaw relays a German media interview with UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin.

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