By Clemente Lisi – NEW YORK, NY (Dec 28, 2020) US Soccer Players – 2020 was an unprecedented year loaded with obstacles, rescheduled games, and health protocols. Even when soccer came back, it wasn't the same. Tournaments played in bubbles, no fans allowed into stadiums, and piped in crowd noise became common this year. Despite all of this, enough of the games continued to create a new normal. . . .
By J Hutcherson (Oct 20, 2020) US Soccer Players - Last week's brief Project Big Picture debate lasted just long enough to remind everybody how generally annoying revamp ideas have gotten. There's always someone or some group that knows that they can do things better. Then there's the current stakeholders insisting on holding onto what they have. That's been an ongoing them in European soccer . . .
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Tuesday's soccer news starts with European Club Association and Juventus president Andrea Agnelli making one economic issue clear. UEFA will likely refund Champions League and Europa League broadcast rights holders around 575 million euros. Agnelli made that statement at the organization's 24th general assembly with UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin present. "We have seen a £330million rebate in . . .
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 (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 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 . . .
Friday's soccer news starts with a question that may only be an issue in retrospect. With all of the world's professional sports leagues impacted by the global pandemic looking to get the games in, will this be the summer of too many options? The Bundesliga is the only major European league that will finish by the end of the month, but we now know the 2019-20 Champions and Europa Leagues will be . . .