The MLS player's union released a statement today regarding the labor negotiations with Major League Soccer, stating that talks have not produced a new collective bargaining agreement and the old CBA will expire at midnight tonight.
The Major League Soccer Players Union (the “Union”)today announced that the collective bargaining agreement between the Union and Major League Soccer (“MLS”) will not be extended past the February 25 deadline previously set by the Union and MLS.
“Effective at midnight tonight, our collective bargaining agreement with MLS will expire,” said Union Executive Director Bob Foose. "We expect that negotiations with MLS will resume at some point, there simply hasn’t been enough progress made in the negotiations to date to warrant an extension of the old agreement. We have advised our players to keep working for the time being, but as of Friday they will be doing so without a CBA. In the meantime, all options are being considered as the process continues. We are completely committed to forging real changes to the way MLS players are treated.”
Major League Soccer provided its own response:
“During the last year, Major League Soccer has been negotiating with the MLS Players Union on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. The current CBA expires today and the Players Union would not agree to a further extension
“We have told the Players Union that the League does not plan to lock out the players and we are prepared to begin the season under the current CBA while we continue to bargain to reach agreement on a new CBA.
“We have listened to the issues raised by the MLS Players Union and the League has made detailed proposals that have addressed these issues, including in the areas of economics, guaranteed contracts, options and the ability of a player to move to another MLS Club if he is released by his current Club. These proposals, which represent substantial changes from the current CBA, will significantly increase our spending and provide substantially more rights to the players.”
Good news? Sounds like we won't have a strike just yet, but we shouldn't assume one won't see one before the start of the season.
In the meantime, the Houston Dynamo and New York Red Bulls are preparing to play in the Disney Soccer Classic in Orlando tonight. FC Dallas faces Toronto FC in the second match of tonight's schedule.