We’ll have much more on this developing story as the day progresses. I apologize for the lateness of my thoughts in advance as I have been on the road to watch the University of Miami play the University of Wisconsin in the Champs Sports Bowl. Feel free to leave your comments on this thread.

Initial Thoughts:

  • The USSF is a political body that often times works to protect the interests of MLS. While this is not the worst thing, considering MLS is our first division and our most recognizable professional product, sometimes what is good for MLS as a business conflicts with the overall welfare of the game in this country. I believe the USL/TOA/NASL dispute cannot be viewed in a vacuum and must be analyzed in conjunction with the ongoing dispute between MLS players and the ownership/commissioner of the league. To me it is obvious the USSF is working on behalf of the MLS ownership in trying to ensure no player involved with the MLSPU has a domestic alternative in the case of a lockout. I also would not be shocked if the USSF rejects the registration of current MLS player who seek playing time abroad during a potential lockout.
  • USL-1 and its forerunner league, the A-League/APSL have had second division status for 20 years from the Federation. Choosing not to continue this sanctioning automatically while not sanctioning a potential replacement league, the NASL may appear pragmatic, but is probably an outgrowth of the USSF’s failure to properly mediate this situation. They would simply like it to go away, which it will not.
  • FIFA requires federations to periodically file compliance documentation. Right now the USSF is theoretically out of compliance with FIFA mandates because of the lawsuit filed in Florida courts between the USL and three clubs that have attempted to move to the NASL. Since a professional league has filed a lawsuit against club sides, FIFA is surely not pleased with the USSF. So, perhaps the USSF feels by not sanctioning either league, they can please FIFA.

More Later…….