By: Zackery Rogers
The Major League Soccer (MLS) 2020 season tipped off February 29 but is currently on hold due to the pandemic known as COVID-19.
March 12 the MLS suspended all play and set a return date for May 10. Along the way, the league enforced a training moratorium which was updated yesterday to April 3.
As of now, players are not permitted to go to practice facilities and are asked to remain in their team regions. Players are allowed to request relocation.
On the flip side, fans should be optimistic that the 2020 season will commence. The league will utilize all of their resources to accommodate their players, coaches, and fans.
Not to mention the MLS has done an excellent job of laying out tangible timelines and dates regarding the season. Other leagues have not provided any tentative dates in comparison to the MLS.
Here are three reasons why fans can expect the 2020 season to continue:
MLS Commissioner Don Garber
First off, the MLS is in good hands with Commissioner Don Garber. Garber has been at the helm as commissioner since 1999.
Since accepting the role of the commissioner the league grew from 12 teams to 26. Not to mention, the attendance at games has increased. He is the second-longest tenured commissioner in American sports behind NHL commissioner Gary Bettman.
Throughout the constant updates about COVID-19, Garber continues to take action in addressing this pandemic. He is constantly checking in with the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and reacting accordingly.
Garber continues to push for the May 10th return date and is exploring all options. He is open to indoor or closed play and whichever option will help slowly implement a return. But his main objective is to make sure that all 34 games are played.
As a seasoned commissioner expect him to continue to follow CDC protocol and find a creative way to push the season forward.
Length of Schedule
Secondly, fans can expect the MLS to return in May because of the shortness of their schedule. The fact that the season is 34 games makes it easy for the league to plan effectively. Obviously training and making sure that the players are in shape plays a significant role.
Nevertheless, players will be provided with the time to work out. The fact that Garber is looking at alternative ways to get the maximum amount of games speaks volumes.
Good morning! Please remember to wash your hands and practice
S O C I A L D I S T A N C I N G 💨 pic.twitter.com/dQvWGZywxb
— Inter Miami CF (@InterMiamiCF) March 26, 2020
Furthermore, since the season only consists of 34 games it allows teams to look into different venues. Not to mention extending television deals and contracts won’t cost an overwhelming amount.
Postponed 2020 Olympics
Lastly, the MLS 2020 season will resume because the 2020 Olympics has been postponed. Even though soccer doesn’t always generate as much income as the NFL, NBA or MLB it does make up for it in viewership.
Soccer is one of the most impactful sports when it comes to the international component. Futbol fans get excited about World Cup play and it’s a major event that brings people together.
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) March 26, 2020
As of late, the MLS has done a superb job of getting international players to play in the league. The level of competition has increased.
If the World Cup gets pushed back or canceled the world needs something to watch and the MLS can be just what the fans need.
As the world continues to adjust to this pandemic, fans should look for the return of the MLS 2020 season come May.