Top Stories

SBI is heading to LA (It’s Q&A Time)

Good afternoon folks. I am on the plane and getting ready to leave for Los Angeles. SBI senior writer Dylan Butler will be keeping you all informed on the news of the day while I make my way to California ahead of Sunday’s MLS Cup final.

While I’m flying I figured I could post a new Q&A session. You know the drill. Please feel free to ask your soccer (and other) questions in the comments section below and I will be sure to try and answer them in a prompt manner.

Fire away, and for some of you, see you in LA.


  1. Ives,

    Have you heard anything regarding changes in the rule structure, especially when it comes to changing the cap? I ask you this because I can’t imagine the likes of barcelona being interested in a franchise under the current conditions. If Miami were to play now they would struggle to gain support with their fans. tThe salary cap prevents teams from getting great players, which in returns gets fans. I have a feeling something has been said any insite?

  2. Don Garber recently stated: “I think they have taken it to the next level in Miami and it is a compelling aspect to the whole concept.” Beside the fact that one of the world’s top clubs — FC Barcelona — wants to be a MLS investor, what have you been able to glean that is special about the Miami proposal and who is joining Miami as an expansion franchise in 2011?

  3. Since you’re heading to LA, an entertainment question:

    The Office (US) v. The Office (UK) smackdown.

    David Brent or Michael Scott?

    Tim and Dawn or Jim and Pam?

    Garreth or Dwight?

    Rest of the UK cast or Rest of the US cast?

  4. Just go ahead and rub it in our faces…

    As a soccer reporter what do you get to write off as a “buisness expense”? Every soccer channel? A beer at every game? Taking a player out for a beer at the local pub for an “interview”? Soccer video games? A big screen TV?

  5. Please don’t answer any more “your starting line up under the following circumstances”…but this one is slightly different:

    Who is the worst starting goal keeper in MLS and who is the best back up (not neccesarily on the same team)? What are the odds the worst starter will be warming a bench next year and the best backup will be playing regularily?

  6. So with all the dances that have been done as Red Bull goal celebrations, who is generally recognized on the team as being the best dancer? Just curious to see what the team thinks 🙂

  7. So let’s say that Subotic does decide to play for the US. What happens to our backline? Gooch or Boca moved to the bench? Boca moved out left to make room for Neven in the center? Is he too good of a talent to leave on the bench?

  8. Ives, what do you think the solution is to killing the best MLS teams by rewarding them for their success with all the international tournaments and extra games. Clearly these teams aren’t deep enought and the extra games create so much more fatigue and injuries.

  9. Might be late, so I’ll go not soccer.

    You said you liked the move “rounders” in the past eh? Do you play poker? Are you good?

  10. I’m thinking about purchasing a team in the NPSL and placing it in Utica New York. What have you heard about the viability of the league as compared to the USL PDL division both in ownership and play on the pitch?

  11. Any chance RBNY (or someone else) has inquired about the availability of Brazilian striker Washington? He seems like a perfect fit for MLS. In his thirties, healthy, on a flagging Flu side, all-time single season goal scorer in Brazil’s A division, some national team experience, back-to-back starter in recent FIFA Club Worlds for two different teams, done with Europe, and remains an absolute world class striker. MLS should be salavating over him, and one could easily imagine the marketing dream Washington would be for D.C. United. Washington is to the striker position what GBS is to playmaking, only Washington is better.

  12. How did you get started in journalism generally, and in NY (with the Red Bulls coverage, in particular?)

    Before you were an objective journalist, what soccer team and player were you passionate about? 😉

  13. Hey Ives,

    I was wondering with all the Bid’s for an MLS franchise and only 2 spots available has the MLS ever considered (in the future) eventually awarding a franchise to every GOOD bid and creating a 1st division and 2nd division with promotion and relegation? It seems that some USL teams have a good structure but haven’t bid for an MLS franchise. If all the bids go through that would bring the league to 23 teams if you add in Rochester, Charleston who have soccer specific stadiums already that would be 25 teams. Why not combine everything and play for promotion and relegation? Just a question I had thats all seems to make sense ( if the bids are GOOD and once they all get accepted ). Every top league in the world has promotion and relegation so why not MLS. Has the MLS ever thought or contemplated this? What are your thoughts, good or bad idea?

  14. With Bobby Boswell’s return to form this year, do you see any more USMNT call ups in his future? Since there’s such a logjam of defenders in the center, would it be crazy-talk to try him out on the right or left side?

  15. Thanks for all of the updates, I visit the site as much as I go on Facebook.

    Do you think we will see a major influx of foreign stars and US international veterans to MLS around 2010-2012?

    There’s the group of foreign players who have said they want to come here and/or may come if the situation is right: Henry, Ronaldo, Stalteri, Veron, Shevchenko, Ze Roberto, Anelka, Pardo, Riquelme, Silvestre, Coupet, De Guzman, etc.

    Then there’s the group of US internationals that will most likely be out of the national team picture after 2010: Califf, Demerit, Friedel, Convey, Berhalter, Cherundolo, Hahnemann, Bocanegra, and others.

    So do you think everything works out with the league, the teams, and the players to get them here? And how will their arrival help the league (especially with all of those defense US internationals)?

  16. Great site Ives. You’ve got my vote as the best!

    Q: Which of the following scenarios do you think will happen first? And as a followup will it be in our lifetime?

    a. A USMNT player will win FIFA World Player of the year.

    b. A player will win FIFA World Player of the year while playing for MLS.

  17. What happens with the RBNY goalie situation next year? Does Conway get cut and Cepero automatically become the starter?

  18. Hey Ives, thanks for the great work on the site. I am afraid the network guys are going to block it since I visit it so many times during the day.

    Having grown up watching and listening football broadcasts in Spanish, I have to say none of the English announcers come close to the Spanish ones, or Portuguese for that matter. What would be the English equivalents for terms like “un delantero de enganche”, “un pivote”, “volante de contencion”, “un carrilero”, “un clasico numero 7, 9, 10”. Do we have US players that conform to those positions?

    Also, one of my favorite phrases is: “El portero se tiro para la foto”. Besides Ray Hudson, I cannot think of any colorful lines. You have any?


  19. I hear a lot of debate in MLS between having a traditional regular season champion vs. a playoff format. As it stands, there’s very little reward for finishing on top in the regular season. I have a unique idea for a compromise that might satisfy both sides. Why not have the regular season winner get an automatic berth in the title game. Then the next 8 can play over 3 weeks in a playoff format to determine the other participant. Then, while the regular season champ is waiting, they can play home-and-home with the USL champion. Is this such a crazy idea?

  20. Ives,

    Thanks for answering our questions.

    What do you think of the first year of the US Soccer Development Academy?

    Wshould be the next steps for the US Soccer Development Academy?

  21. 1) Do you think sacha kljestan makes a move this summer and what would be a good league for him?

    2) Best movie you have seen this year?

  22. Ives,

    I know this is out of left field and could never, ever happen, but imagine the US national team playing in the EPL or La Liga – how do you think they would fare? Would they be fighting for a spot in Europe, mid-table or fighting against relegation? Like I said, completely hypothetical, just wanted to know where you thought the team would stand against that kind of competition. Thanks and keep up the great work.

  23. Ives,

    With all this economic turmoil and consensus among experts that this is “only the beginning,” I’m wondering what your take is on how this might affect the sudden influx of interest in MLS expansion teams? Looking at the latest stats on the economy and you’d think new investors like those in Vancouver, Portland, Montreal, St Louis etc would be nuts to place bets on soccer right now.

  24. What’s the story with Marvell Wynne not getting a call up for this qualifier? Is he really that far down the list? Considering who is not there (Gooch, Boca, Dolo, etc.) I would have thought he was a shoe-in.

  25. Will Red Bull Park, excuse me Red Bull Arena, be far and away the best stadium in MLS? And why did they change it to “Arena”?

  26. 1. What’s your preference – American-style team names (New England Revolution), European-style teams names (FC Dallas), or a combination of both (Seattle Sounders FC)?

    2. I keep up on details of sports stadiums. Of the already-existing teams, all have plans for a stadium if they don’t have one already. Red Bull Arena is underway, and the Wizards are finally moving closer to making the Bannister Mall site a reality. Past that, there are no real firm plans. Houston is looking at a site near Minute Maid Park, and they only want $10 million in financing from Harris County. The Earthquakes have a spot near San Jose International Airport, but the economy may be putting the project in Jeopardy. We’ve also heard that the Krafts are looking at Somerville as a home for the Revs. And D.C. United has Poplar Point in their sights, but the city is balking at financing; Prince Georges County has said that if the city won’t take the team, they certainly will. Beyond Kansas City, which seems to have the deal as good as done, which team will be the next to get a stadium? And do you see Bob Kraft paying for a stadium himself like he did with The Razor, should no one want to fund the project?

    Thanks, Ives, for all you do. Only one of two blogs in my bookmarks!

  27. Ives, thanks for the site. Great work.

    You have said on a couple of occasions that MLS is not one of the premier leagues around the world. I think that most of us would agree with that statement. Can you rank the world’s top leagues? I don’t know how far down MLS is on your list, but could you rank all the way down to there (if not a little further)?

    Bonus question: Could you list a best XI of current HEAD coaches (from national or club teams) who were once players? I started thinking about this once Argentina named Maradona coach.

  28. why is it that we put so much emphasis on the MLS Cup?? i know follows suit with the regular prime time US sports as far as playoffs and CHAMPION… but why dont we put more emphasis on the Supporters Shield?? why does the media look at the MLS cup as the big prize, while the SS which is the true champion of the league, gets overlooked (for the most part)??

    and i know the SS winners get into all the outside tournys, but the media as well as the world sees the MLS Cup the crowning of the league…

Comments are closed.