Is there a financially responsive salary structure that allow MLS to catch up to FMF in 2-3 yrs?

Discussion in 'MLS: General' started by vevo5, Aug 13, 2012.

  1. vevo5

    vevo5 BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    Let's say MLS owners decide that they want MLS to be on par with FMF 2-3 years from now. They hire some experts to come up with a solution. This solution will require a financially responsive salary structure (i.e. club don't overspend).

    If you're one of these experts, what would you suggest?


  2. Mr. Warmth

    Mr. Warmth Red Card

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    Are you going to use pixie dust or unicorn farts to make soccer the most popular sport in the country, both as a in-stadium spectator sport and televised sport.
  3. Jough

    Jough Member+

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    Unicorn farts.

    Next question?
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  4. Yoshou

    Yoshou Moderator Staff Member

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    Short answer: No
    Long answer: Hell no


  5. krudmonk

    krudmonk Member+

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    Merge leagues. It's so simple.
  6. 15 to 32

    15 to 32 Member+

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    and you thought travel was a bitch in this league right now...
  7. vevo5

    vevo5 BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    pixie dust or unicorn farts: might as well suggest Bill Gates buying MLS and fund it as his plaything while you are at it

    merge leagues: is this a doable solution?


    MLS biggest strengths are LA, NY, SEA, TOR and their growth potential.
    MLS biggest weakness is forcing strongest teams to be on par with weakest teams.

    If the EPL forces the like of Man Utd, Man City, Chelsea, Arsenal, Tottenham, Liverpool to be on par as the like of Stoke, Wigan, Bolton and Blackburn, how attractive and competitive would the EPL be compare to the like of La Liga, Bundesliga and Serie A?

    EPL structure would not be a good solution for MLS since it does not have a financially responsive salary structure.
  8. bunge

    bunge BigSoccer Supporter

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    Merge leagues and call it the Superliga!
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  9. radmonkey

    radmonkey Member

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    This sounds a lot like the Bundesliga wich has the best attendance in Europe. The most competitive overall and still, you had Bayern Munich make the Champions League final in 2 out of the last three years.
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  10. vevo5

    vevo5 BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    Really? I didn't know that Bundesliga force the like of Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Schalke 04 to be on par with the likes of FC Augsburg, Hamburger SV, Hertha BSC, FC Köln, FC Kaiserslautern.

    I thought the Bundesliga model is a strict free-spending with a "balanced budget" license that aim to limit overspending.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport2/hi/football/europe/8589872.stm

    The system by which Bundesliga clubs are regulated, with an emphasis on strict financial rules and licensing.

    Bundesliga clubs must submit information about their budgets and expected expenditure, and prove they are financially stable in order to play in the league.

    There are also check ups during the season and licences can be withdrawn. Second Division club Arminia Bielefeld were deducted four points by the Bundesliga for breaching the terms of their licence after suffering a financial shortfall and were fined 50,000 euros (£45,000) for the violation, which they admitted in February.


    Which mean Munich or Dortmund could spend a lot more money than the like of Koln or Kaiserslautern as long as Munich and Dortmund can afford it with the revenue they generate. Likewise, if Koln and Kaiserslautern can increase their revenue (higher attendance, more sponsorship etc...), they can too spend more money in a "budget balance" manner.
  11. triplet1

    triplet1 BigSoccer Supporter

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    Can clubs compete with other clubs that supposedly have more than five times the payroll spending they do?

    Not consistently, no.

    And I see no credible way for 19 teams to generate the revenue to close that gap in three years.
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  12. mcontento

    mcontento Member

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    And there it is...close thread now.
  13. tab5g

    tab5g Member+

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    But add in a 20th team within the next 2-3 years, and boom, that's cosmic unicorn fart power.
  14. Vander Decken IX

    Vander Decken IX Member

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    This will make MLS more vulnerable to virus and trojan attacks.
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  15. vevo5

    vevo5 BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    A league can be exciting without "hardcore" parity and the playoff is a good equalizer to diminish the effect of "higher payroll".

    And it won't be as extreme as the EPL

    [​IMG]




    Nobody is asking for a miracle where all teams will close the gap with the Mexican clubs. But the like of LA, NY, SEA,TOR, Houston, Vancouver etc... could close the gap with the Mexican clubs if they are not forced to be as weak as MLS weakest.

    A club that spend $12 mil on 24 players "evenly" will be much more stronger than a club that spend $10 mil on 3 players and $2 mil on the other 21 players. An advantage that Mexican Clubs have because they don't have the DP Rule and the strict hard cap.
  16. vevo5

    vevo5 BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    triplet1 posted this info about the possibility that the playoff system is a great parity leveller.

  17. OleGunnar20

    OleGunnar20 Member+

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    well we are already pretty close to competing now with a salary structure that is very limiting.

    so i could see that if the salary structure were tweaked but still responsible it might be possible to draw close to even.

    the problem right now, as somebody pointed out, is you can't spend evenly on quality and depth. you can't have 15 players all between 250K-750K. and right now teams are not free to turn their off field power into on field power. too much of that would be bad, but none of it is equally bad. you need some disparity in the league but not too much. it is a tough balance which right now is too far to "total parity".

    my suggestion is a very slight tweak on the current system:

    1. every team contributes 30% of their ticket revenue (as they do today) and for that they get $3M in "salary cap"

    2. a team can have up to $5M in "salary cap" but they must cover any amount above $3M. so if the Sounders 30% contribution to MLS is over $5M then their cap is up to $5M without kicking in any extra. if LAGs 30% contribution is $3.5M then any salary cap amount between $3.5M and $5M they must kick in the difference. like wise if a team like FC Dallas has a 30% contribution of $2M then they get the $3M cap and if they want to go up to $5M they must pay the difference between the $3m and $5M (so 2M 30% contribution plus 2M extra to raise their cap to 5M). this would greatly expand each team's cap possibility without increasing the amount the "league" itself is on the hook for.

    3. 20 senior roster spots have a up to $5M cap, the max individual salary is 500K and each team can have up to 3 DPs with a cap hit of 500k (any DP under 23 has a $250K cap hit).

    4. 10 developmental roster spots that don't count against the cap. to be on the dev roster must A. be under 23 and B. on a GA contract or a home grown player or on a league minimum contract (no more 30 year olds on the off budget) ... the league minimum would be $50K.

    5. of the 20 senior roster spots 8 must be "domestic" (4us/4can for Canadian teams). of the dev roster spots 8 must be "domestic" (same rules about greencards etc apply to "domestic" or you could redefine "domestic" to the way they do in the EPL and other leagues, which is that the player must have played at least 3-5 years of college/amateur/youth soccer in the US/Canada between the ages of 16-21 which would help avoid the US Immigration laws that prevent Canadians being domestics). there is no more trading of international roster spots because there are none only "domestic" minimums.

    6. the new roster/cap works as a "snapshot". so at any given time the players you have on the 20+10 rosters and their yearly salaries (or salary plus amortized transfer fee) and statuses must meet the requirements. no more "mid season" lower DP cap hit or whatever. if a player is on loan or on IR (minimum 6 weeks out) then they do not need to be accounted for but as soon as they return they roster must be in compliance. also, any player can be cut or their contract paid out and as soon as they are no longer on the roster they no longer count against the roster/cap (up to some cut off point maybe).

    i think with those rules (and some growth built into them that exceeds inflation/is tied to revenue increases) MLS could compete with LigaMX at least the top MLS teams who would be in CCL.
  18. vevo5

    vevo5 BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    triplet 1 wrote this.

    The reality of MLS:

    Let's see if we agree on this much -- Garber in his recent TSN interview:

    "At the end of the day, the league needs to improve and the quality of our players needs to get better. All those things that we want, our fans want, our owners and teams want. And that’s not something you can waive a magic wand and expect to happen overnight. It’s going to happen in time."

    If you believe him, it's not a debate that the quality has to improve. Fans accept it. The league accepts it. The owners accept it.

    And, yes, it won't happen overnight.

    But how can it ever happen if MLS' salary structure doesn't allow its teams to acquire and retain that quality?

    We've got a classic chicken and egg argument. The league will gladly up the quality when ratings and attendance improves, but how many people are ever going to be attracted to a fairly pedestrian product? You're right that the sport enjoys higher levels of popularity with younger people, which bodes well if MLS can hook them, but to assume today's kids will be drawn to a mediocre league in much greater numbers then today's soccer fans seems wildly optimistic to me.

    If MLS is serious and it wants to move up the food chain, I do not think its realistic for any company in any industry to assume it can grow and overtake its competitors when it pays its talent much less than the industry average. I'm not suggesting to pay cheap players more, I'm saying pay enough to go get better players.

    Now, I'll admit that for what it pays, MLS is a very credible league, but if Garber is serious and he wants MLS to match the Mexican clubs or teams in the mid tier Euro leagues, MLS' pay has to reflect that.
  19. supercooper

    supercooper Red Card

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    Mitt Romney's dad was Mexican. Perhaps he could reclaim his heritage, use a shock and awe midnight strategy with overwhelming force, and take over the FMF if he becomes President.

    If Obama wins, unicorn farts...most definitely
  20. Whitecaps10

    Whitecaps10 Member

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    The short answer is no. If the league continues the gradual growth over the past years, MLS could overcome Liga MX in the future.
  21. vevo5

    vevo5 BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    what about something similar to UEFA financial fair play?

    MLS clubs will spend within their means. A salary cap based on revenue for each individual club. Higher revenue means higher spending. Which mean a club with $30 mil revenue can spend something like $14 mil on players as long as it break-even.

    It would allow the like of LA, NY, SEA, TOR, VAN, HOU to catch up to FMF in a very short time. It would be financially responsive. (all clubs live within their means).

    This system provides incentive to teams that do well off the field.

    Sports Illustrated MLS ambition index
    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/grant_wahl/12/15/mls.teams.ambition/index.html

    1. LA
    2. Seattle
    3. NY
    4. Kansas City
    5. Toronto
    6. Portland
    7. RSL
    8. Philly
    9. Houston
    10. Vancouver
  22. Felixx219

    Felixx219 BigSoccer Supporter

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    What is with the rush to catch up to FMF? MLS is growing at a strong and healthy place, why risk that to catch up with another league? MLS will catch up and likely pass FMF but it doesnt need to happen now or even within 5 years.

    I do not understand how fans can throw out these ideas when MLS is doing about as well as it could possibly do. If the league could spend more on a payroll, they would do so. But, they cant because they are spending within their means and sustaining their current rate of growth which is healthy.
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  23. vevo5

    vevo5 BigSoccer Yellow Card

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    We all want a better league. The sooner the better.

    If MLS adopts some form of UEFA financial fair play, MLS could catch up much faster.

    For example, each club can spend at most 35% of its total revenue on players wages and players transfers. (a club can spend 25% if it choose to, the cap is at 35%).

    $40 mil total revenue x 35% = $14 mil maximum player budget
    $30 mil total revenue x 35% = $10.5 mil maximum player budget
    $20 mil total revenue x 35% = $7 mil maximum player budget
    $10 mil total revenue x 35% = $3.5 mil maximum player budget

    This will motivate all clubs to raise their revenue since their player budget is directly tie to revenue.
  24. ceezmad

    ceezmad Member+

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    Well you two are saying different things.

    Felixx wants every single MLS team to get better, Vevo just want the top team to be free to get better.

    I would agree with Vevo most of the time, but this being America, I do not think casual fans would like a MLS that looked like most soccer leagues. Most American fans want a MLS that looks more like say the NHL.

    Is the balance of the American fan between kicking ass (this case getting our asses kicked by Liga MX) and the league having a decent balance between top and bottom teams.

    BTW Vevo5 didn't you have a thread like this under the be the Don forum?
  25. triplet1

    triplet1 BigSoccer Supporter

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    Hey, don't look at me, this is coming from the league. Garber's said it several times, and he just said in again in last month's interview in the Sporting News:

    "Was I disappointed that an MLS team didn’t get further, whether that was the Galaxy or (Toronto) FC? Absolutely disappointed. At the end of the day, we’ve got to stand toe-to-toe with our neighbors in Mexico. We’ve got to try to win that tournament. We’ve got to try to get to the world club championship. That’s got to be a priority."

    http://aol.sportingnews.com/soccer/...r-mls-commissioner-sporting-news-conversation

    My point remains, if people -- fans, owners and league officials -- are convinced that even a modest disparity in the salary budgets will make it impossible for lower payroll teams to compete in MLS, why is is reasonable to assume MLS teams can stand "toe to toe" with the Mexican League when their clubs are spending significantly more on players?

    If it's important for MLS teams to be as good as their Mexican club counterparts, spend the resources on it. If MLS can't or won't spend those resources, its time for Garber to stop saying it's a priority IMO.

    Fish or cut bait.

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