By J Hutcherson (Aug 25, 2020) US Soccer Players - In this era of pretending that it might be possible to have reasonable control of a situation, it has to be tough to be a governing body. On Monday, FIFA released a set of temporary regulations for the September international window. With UEFA the only confederation using the September dates, the regulations only apply in Europe. Still, it's an . . .
By J Hutcherson (Aug 18, 2020) US Soccer Players - It's easy enough to plug in any team you want as potentially able to put together a run over the rest of this bizarre MLS season. Major League Soccer is back all over again, caught in a restart with teams moving players and trying to change their immediate futures. It's a version of business as usual, but not what anybody expected. There's no . . .
By J Hutcherson (Aug 11, 2020) US Soccer Players - The 2019-20 Champions League rolls on to the quarterfinal stage in a quasi-bubble environment in Lisbon. In an attempt to get the games in, it's now a single-elimination tournament starting on Wednesday when Atalanta plays PSG on Wednesday at an empty Estadio da Luz. In true UEFA fashion, this hasn't led to running multiple quarterfinals per . . .
By J Hutcherson (Aug 4, 2020) US Soccer Players - If Major League Soccer successfully restarts the regular season this month, it's a safe assumption that MLS is Back won't matter. Certainly, the group stage results counting in the league table becomes an issue, but that depends on how many games MLS expects to play. If it's enough, the clubs in the league of four-game losing streaks will manage. . . .
By J Hutcherson (Jul 21, 2020) US Soccer Players - It was already an interesting time for European soccer even before the pandemic that brought leagues to an abrupt halt in March. Look back at some of the articles on the future of the sport making the rounds late in 2019, and the primary focus was what happens next. The Champions League TV deal ends in 2022 with the expectation that UEFA will make . . .
By J Hutcherson (Jul 14, 2020) US Soccer Players - For years, Major League Soccer has leaned on the idea that their European counterparts are jealous of their cost control. MLS has single-entity, even in its looser form preventing true free agency and clubs competing to sign the same player. Then there's the pragmatic approach to the transfer market, still in its early stages of paying transfer . . .
By J Hutcherson (Jul 7, 2020) US Soccer Players - Since streaming services have decided the best way to differentiate themselves is to offer anything they can find, it's not exactly abnormal that the Danish league is available on ESPN+. It was easy to spot what was different with Saturday's AGF vs Copenhagen game. Danish authorities eased restrictions on crowds, allowing over 7,000 into Ceres . . .
By J Hutcherson (June 30, 2020) US Soccer Players - Let's assume that the bubble holds. Major League Soccer makes it through their MLS is Back tournament as planned. There's no additional hiatus, no crisis moment, and all involved play out the schedule as if it's business as usual. Even better, the concentrated environment improves play, leading to a bitter fight for a championship that resonates . . .
By J Hutcherson (June 23, 2020) US Soccer Players - Belgian's Pro League became the first notable topflight in Europe to decide not to resume its season. Minus a government mandate, Belgian soccer authorities decided to act before the Bundesliga showed a restart was possible. Their northern neighbor the Netherlands had no choice. The Dutch government banned any pro sports until September, calling . . .
By J Hutcherson (June 16, 2020) US Soccer Players - Major League Soccer decided early on that its version of parity would make them the league of no dynasties. To their single-entity way of thinking, this was a good thing. No dynasties meant no dominant teams defining their new league. They were wrong. DC United was the first MLS dynasty and the LA Galaxy was right there with them. Chicago emerged . . .