Promotion & Relegation

MrE

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The very interesting thread about building a team or a brand has led to debate about the advantages / disadvantages of promotion and relegation in an attempt to keep that thread on track I have started a new discussion here. The discussion starts here

I understand that Atletico Madrid would not have been in this position had relegation not existed, but at the turn of the Century they were a La Liga Div 2 side. They won the La Liga last season. That achievement would not have been possible without promotion and relegation.

The roller coaster of emotions that a fan has to go through when there sides get promoted or relegated is part of the package of fandom !!! It is why we support our teams, not just partying with the highs, but also mourning with the lows.

The Romance of the game sees teams like Wimbledon, come from non league (Level 5 & below) football, to the top flight. The Swansea Citys, Brightons, Northampton Towns, etc would not have been able to work there way up to the top flight from almost oblivion.

If promotion and relegation was not possible, the game would have stalled, teams like Burnley, Blackpool, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Leeds United would still be top flight teams, whilst teams like those listed above would never have got a sniff.

The current major brands would never have been built. Teams would have become blockers.

The MLS has some safeguards to ensure that the league is competitive. But even then the league only represents about 15 of 50 states. (That is States not Cities)
What if the game grows in other states ? What of other states want a team. Does the league get limited to 1 team per state ?

What about Cities / Towns / Counties in each state ?
Do those teams not deserve the chance to get to the top level.

I believe the MLS has a lifespan without promotion / relegation, then after that will stagnate.

What are your views ?
 

einwindir

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There has been no pro/rel in any of the major American sports and they've been moving along just fine. The infrastructure for pro/rel has existed for a very long time outside the US, the clubs are built with that in mind. We use a franchise system here - an owner buys into the league. In order to protect his/her investment the team is guaranteed to maintain it's position in the league.

Our lower league teams usually act as feeder clubs for the professional teams. As far as soccer is concerned, USL, NASL are lower leagues. Could a team like Minn U or the infamous Cosmos hold their own in MLS - possibly? But why should they be allowed to bounce NE Revs from a professional spot when Revs paid their dues to play in MLS. As embarrass as it is to admit, we are a pay to play league - even our academies are pay to play (though take note, these types of academies are currently being phased out).

Would it work here, no. Would I like to see pro/rel as the sport exists today, no. Would it add an interesting dynamic to American soccer, yes.
 

MrE

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There has been no pro/rel in any of the major American sports and they've been moving along just fine. The infrastructure for pro/rel has existed for a very long time outside the US, the clubs are built with that in mind. We use a franchise system here - an owner buys into the league. In order to protect his/her investment the team is guaranteed to maintain it's position in the league.

Our lower league teams usually act as feeder clubs for the professional teams. As far as soccer is concerned, USL, NASL are lower leagues. Could a team like Minn U or the infamous Cosmos hold their own in MLS - possibly? But why should they be allowed to bounce NE Revs from a professional spot when Revs paid their dues to play in MLS. As embarrass as it is to admit, we are a pay to play league - even our academies are pay to play (though take note, these types of academies are currently being phased out).

Would it work here, no. Would I like to see pro/rel as the sport exists today, no. Would it add an interesting dynamic to American soccer, yes.

So as far as you are concerned, the only way to make it to the top is to pay to be there. In a sporting environment that seems wrong (at least to those of us outside the USA). Make sure the finances and facilities are there prior to acceptance yes, but prohibition on the grounds of payment to the league .... wrong.
I love the irony in your statement about "lower league teams" acting as feeder clubs, yet your voice is heard loud and clear in the we don't want to be a feeder club to Man City debate.
So now its OK for NYCFC and other MLS clubs to rape and pillage talent from other clubs / leagues, but unacceptable for it to happen to you.
 
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Tom in Fairfield CT

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I think the issue is one of trying to create a league out of thin air 20 years ago rather than a conscious desire to avoid pro/rel. How do you get anyone to invest anything into the new league if 2 out of the 20 or so investors were going to lose everything every year? The new franchise fees go a long way to keeping the league afloat every year, I don't see how the logistics would work based on the the cost to start up for an MLS team.

SO NYCFC is relegated the first year, where does that franchise fee go? or come from? Do the newly promoted cosmos have to pony up 100 million to join MLS? I am sure the cosmos had every opportunity to join MLS and chose not to because its cheaper to run in the second division.
 

MrE

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The fact that this MrEd is a promotion/relegation tinfoil member doesn't surprise me in the least.
Tinfoil ? Please explain your insult.

I get the Mr Ed bit but I am afraid this donkey has more brains than any MP
 

MrE

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I think the issue is one of trying to create a league out of thin air 20 years ago rather than a conscious desire to avoid pro/rel. How do you get anyone to invest anything into the new league if 2 out of the 20 or so investors were going to lose everything every year? The new franchise fees go a long way to keeping the league afloat every year, I don't see how the logistics would work based on the the cost to start up for an MLS team.

SO NYCFC is relegated the first year, where does that franchise fee go? or come from? Do the newly promoted cosmos have to pony up 100 million to join MLS? I am sure the cosmos had every opportunity to join MLS and chose not to because its cheaper to run in the second division.

Thing is it is not the second division, in my eyes it is the top division that a team can aspire to. The MLS is merely a show league akin to the Harlem Globtrotters.
 

MikeDatTiger

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The very interesting thread about building a team or a brand has led to debate about the advantages / disadvantages of promotion and relegation in an attempt to keep that thread on track I have started a new discussion here. The discussion starts here

I understand that Atletico Madrid would not have been in this position had relegation not existed, but at the turn of the Century they were a La Liga Div 2 side. They won the La Liga last season. That achievement would not have been possible without promotion and relegation.

The roller coaster of emotions that a fan has to go through when there sides get promoted or relegated is part of the package of fandom !!! It is why we support our teams, not just partying with the highs, but also mourning with the lows.

The Romance of the game sees teams like Wimbledon, come from non league (Level 5 & below) football, to the top flight. The Swansea Citys, Brightons, Northampton Towns, etc would not have been able to work there way up to the top flight from almost oblivion.

If promotion and relegation was not possible, the game would have stalled, teams like Burnley, Blackpool, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Leeds United would still be top flight teams, whilst teams like those listed above would never have got a sniff.

The current major brands would never have been built. Teams would have become blockers.

The MLS has some safeguards to ensure that the league is competitive. But even then the league only represents about 15 of 50 states. (That is States not Cities)
What if the game grows in other states ? What of other states want a team. Does the league get limited to 1 team per state ?

What about Cities / Towns / Counties in each state ?
Do those teams not deserve the chance to get to the top level.

I believe the MLS has a lifespan without promotion / relegation, then after that will stagnate.

What are your views ?

A lot of states don't have top flight professional clubs because the population distribution doesn't allow for a proper supporting of the club. Most of the people in those states just latch on to the nearest city and support those teams. So in America, the teams have not just a city following but a regional following as well, which has been greatly enhanced by the availability of the teams on TV and internet.

There's no doubt that there's a romanticism about the ability to create a club that can surge to the top through the divisions and there's a lot to like about it. However, introducing it here would do a number of things. One, it would discourage investment. The lack of relegation is encouraging prospective owners to invest in MLS, not just in franchise fees that are being used to buy good players but also in terms of facilities, stadiums, academies, etc. Far more important to MLS and US soccer than the ability of a team in Montana to rise to MLS Champions is the ability of the Chicago, Houston, LA, NY, etc to have teams there drawing market shares, creating interest in MLS, and developing players.

There's also a question about how badly a club would suffer with relegation. In Europe, the clubs are much more than the local team but also emblematic of a particular neighborhood, religion, political view, ethnicity, etc. that doesn't exist. Barca (used to be) "more than a club" as an emblem of Catalan independence against Real Madrid and its power. That doesn't really exist. You root for say the Houston Dynamo because you like soccer and live in or near Houston or you like one of their players. If the Dynamo get relegated, how many of their fans stay? Look at the Cosmos. Pulled in 8k when there was talk of an eventual MLS promotion; once NYCFC was announced they're struggling mightily at the gate. Relegation in the US may not just be penalty, there's good reason to think it could be a death knell for most clubs.

What I think is a decent solution is that (way, way way down the line) MLS have a 40 team league divided into two twenty team conferences. At 40 you've basically taken hold in every city that can reasonably support a top flight team. The downside is that stars from the west coast don't meet those on the east but you have much more regional rivalries that have been an excellent driver of MLS popularity (see Cup, Cascadia).
 

NYJoe

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The only way I see pro/reg happening in the MLS is if the top leagues are made up entirely of MLS teams (i.e. not using NASL or USLPro at the second tier). If MLS expands to ~40 teams, then I could see the split into two leagues - as all teams would have paid the hefty expansion fees and otherwise played by the MLS rules - and allowing for pro/reg between those leagues.

Very far fetched.
 
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Trone

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This thread is a complete waste of time, its not going to happen anytime in the near or far future. Has Ted Westervelt found this forum, ugh. Who cares about prom/rel, lets worry about getting MLS to be a better league before we start worrying about pro/rel, still much work to do in advancing MLS and no pro/rel wont help advance MLS.
 
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MikeDatTiger

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This thread is a complete waste of time, its not going to happen anytime in the near or far future. Has Ted Westervelt found this forum, ugh. Who cares about prom/rel, lets worry about getting MLS to be a better league before we start worrying about pro/rel, still much work to do in advancing MLS and no pro/rel wont help advance MLS.

I think talking about MLS, even with topics about pro/rel, do help advancing MLS. If you think it won't advance MLS, say why.

Besides, this is a forum. This is designed for people to spend a lot of time talking about stuff.
 
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Trone

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I think talking about MLS, even with topics about pro/rel, do help advancing MLS. If you think it won't advance MLS, say why.

Besides, this is a forum. This is designed for people to spend a lot of time talking about stuff.

It wont advance MLS because none of the NASL teams are ready to come to MLS, they dont have the facilities, the money to stay competitive, the following etc. MSL would be weakened with the addition of NASL. Pro/Rel is how teams go bust, they are small budget teams forced to spend ot compete in top flight and they go boom, this has happened many times in Europe. Also, lower table first flight teams go bust trying to avoid relegation. But in the US quote simply the 2nd tier is nowhere near ready to be involved in pro/rel. Any NASL team that came up would weaken MLS and any MLS team that went down would not be able to survive. The NASL first needs to get all teams ready for possible promotion in regard to attendance, stadium, roster etc. They would also need a TV deal, if the impact went down this year they would lose a ton of money in NASL and be out of business. 2nd tier needs to be a place where teams can still make money otherwise why in the world would they ever agree to this. Add in the single entity fact and the $100M MLS entry fees and there is just no possible way this happens. In England they pay teams that go up and down lump sums, we dont have that luxury
 
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MrE

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I'm gonna be reprimanded for this by the other admins and surely there will be a passive/agressive post on facebook but I don't care at this point.

You are a complete waste of time.
If that was aimed at me, I don't use facebook
 

grandsolo

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I'm gonna be reprimanded for this by the other admins and surely there will be a passive/agressive post on facebook but I don't care at this point.

You are a complete waste of time.
I thought personal insults were not allowed
 
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Falastur

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MrE, you would come across slightly better if your posts on subjects such as this had more of an air of open debate and less of an air of being instructional to other posters, and that's all I'm going to say on the matter. In the meantime, let's make sure comments in this thread stick to the matter at hand (viz: promotion/relegation) and no more of the cheap digs at each other please.

Getting back to the subject, I've said it elsewhere before and I'm sure I'll say it again at some point in the future: I think promotion/relegation has a chance to work in the US, but it simply can't do while the present US soccer culture is as it is. In order for pro/rel to work it would take it being instituted first not in MLS but at the lower end of the scale. Let fans get used to it with teams with far less of a financial incentive for being at the top and let it filter into the US consciousness that way. Maybe in a generation or so, when the club owners and MLS Commissioners are all (hopefully) men who have grown up seeing the impact of pro/rel at the lower end of the scale, they might start seeing the incentives for reworking MLS into a less franchise-y model.

I thought personal insults were not allowed

It's been noted, don't worry.
 
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MrE

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"Woo-Hoo, we suck slightly less than Cardiff, Fulham and Norwich City!!!"

--West Brom fans.

No one says you suck.
I will support NYCFC in every aspect. It does not mean that I have to agree with all aspects of either the club or the MLS.

Note that the teams you quote are good enough to compete in the MLS, and last year there all of there average attendances were good enough to beat every MLS team other than Seattle.

But they would not have the £100 million that someone quoted to compete with your elite.

Leicester City (Promoted from the Championship)are in a similar position, averaging 25000 a game last season (Galaxy are second best US with 22.1K)

In an the MLS world the sportsmen that play for these teams, the ones that have been moulded to make the team successful, should be excluded from playing at the highest level in there country. Instead they should leave the team to sign for an elitist league club.

No regard for the team that they have been a part of, no regard for the 25K fans that have supported them, just up and off, because the team (It is a team game) can go no higher.

The small/ medium business men that have invested in Leicester should not be allowed to reap there rewards for the good running of a club. (I accept the investments were made with the knowledge if they paid off they would get reward)

Instead the club becomes rendered useless.
No point in investing, as there can be no reward.
No point in supporting because there can be no entry to the top league.

You are not there yet, I accept that, but the danger with the No promotion / Relegation model is that you are not building for the future. Not encouraging investment into clubs further down the food chain.

I do not aim to be instructional (As Falustur put it) , I aim to create debate.

This point says, There maybe teams outside the MLS that are better.... Is it right that they should be restricted in there development by the MLS Monster. (I accept the Franchise argument right now, but long term is it the best solution)
 
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MrE

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MrE, you would come across slightly better if your posts on subjects such as this had more of an air of open debate and less of an air of being instructional to other posters, and that's all I'm going to say on the matter. In the meantime, let's make sure comments in this thread stick to the matter at hand (viz: promotion/relegation) and no more of the cheap digs at each other please.

Getting back to the subject, I've said it elsewhere before and I'm sure I'll say it again at some point in the future: I think promotion/relegation has a chance to work in the US, but it simply can't do while the present US soccer culture is as it is. In order for pro/rel to work it would take it being instituted first not in MLS but at the lower end of the scale. Let fans get used to it with teams with far less of a financial incentive for being at the top and let it filter into the US consciousness that way. Maybe in a generation or so, when the club owners and MLS Commissioners are all (hopefully) men who have grown up seeing the impact of pro/rel at the lower end of the scale, they might start seeing the incentives for reworking MLS into a less franchise-y model.



It's been noted, don't worry.

The danger is that there will be no lower end to the scale in a generation or so.

Oh and dont worry about einwindir einwindir comment. I assume he was just stuck for a meaningful reply at that moment in time
 

Falastur

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I think you're being a little overdramatic about that. I know US football has a history of instability, but that doesn't mean that leagues are incapable of surviving more than two decades, nor does it mean that if one league should happen to collapse that there's no possibility of simply replacing it in kind a season or two later. The fundamental problem that football in the US has had in the past is a lack of strong supporter base when leagues fell on difficulties. I think that is slowly but surely ceasing to be a reality now. I don't know whether football can ever be the US #1 sport, but I think it's shedding its reputation as something of an irrelevance which fans are happy to jump ship on.
 
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BxLio91

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I find it ironic that a Man City fan has a problem with paying the way to the top.