Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Which teams need to be successful in 2006?

It's fun to predict the 2006 MLS season, and pick who you think is going to be good and bad. But it's important to take a look at which teams would benefit the most from success. It rarely has a huge impact on the team's overall popularity, unless a team is constantly good (DC) or bad (Metros). So it can have an impact, even though ultimately it probably isn't a huge one. Although if SJ won titles in 1996, 1997, and 1999 while DC sucked, I wonder how it would've turned out?

Feel free to post who you think should rank the highest. The top 2-3 are pretty obvious, but after that it's kinda hard.

1) Chivas USA

Number one has to be Chivas. Normally I would say that the teams with SSS's aren't as important (because their future is secured), but Chivas is different. First, it's not their stadium. They could get contracted and there would still be a team to play there. But Chivas needs to be successful more than any other team so that this incredible experiment can be a smashing success. If MLS can draw a ton of Mexican fans with Chivas, it's one step closer to reaching all soccer fans in this country.

2) Red Bull New York

Need to keep this enthusiasm and momentum going all year long.

3) Houston Dynamo

It's like an expansion team. First year in a new city will draw fans regardless, but you want to make a good impression. They also have a stadium deal to work on.

4) Real Salt Lake

Another new team working on a stadium. More importantly for this ranking, you don't want them to get a loser reputation.

5) FC Dallas

A history of mediocre teams and attendances. It would be good to see a better team now that they have PHP, to capitalize on fans checking it out.

6) Chicago Fire

They have the new stadium, which will attract fans no matter what, and a history of success. But it would be nice to open it with a good team.

7) Columbus Crew

Could use a good team after their worst year both on the field and in the stands. Don't want to make that decrease permanent.

8) Kansas City Wizards

Team has always struggled to draw fans (and don't try to use 2003 to disprove that, doesn't work), and are looking to get a stadium.

9) New England Revolution

No chance of a new stadium any time soon, and Kraft owns their current stadium. But a few good years could erase the drop in attendance from the 90s.

10) Colorado Rapids

Historically crappy team needs a good year going into the new stadium year. But it's kind of a throwaway year.

11) D.C. United

Great fan base and Freddy Adu. Plus they've already survived the Rongen-Hudson era.

12) Los Angeles

Defending champions, highest attendance, sweet stadium.

Comments on "Which teams need to be successful in 2006?"


Blogger D said ... (8:26 AM, April 05, 2006) : 

I think you have the Wiz[ards] too low. The closer they get to a relocation and/or stadium decision, the more important success becomes.

RBNY needs to be successful primarily for Alexi and Mo, less so for MLS. I'd move them down to 5th, and move KC up to second.

Otherwise, I am in agreement.


Blogger Kali said ... (10:17 AM, April 05, 2006) : 

What, like, we don't already have a loser reputation?



Blogger Mike H said ... (11:34 AM, April 05, 2006) : 

Interesting post. Never really stopped to think about the season in this way.

Here is my list:

1. KC - If they don't hit it big, they might be moved come December.

2. Real Salt Lake - The stadium deal is getting them lots of bad press. If they don't start winning the "why do we want to pay millions for losers" talk will grow.

3. Chivas - I don't think they will get pulled in 2 seasons (their attendance level is good), but they need to give fans something to chear about.

4. Houston - Finding a stadium deal is always easier when you have thousands of fans excited about your product.

5. New York - I think the new owners do not expect to win it all this year, but they need to see progress over last year or huge changes will happen.

6. Chicago - New stadium needs good soccer

7. Columbus - Two bad years in a row is the making of a reputation.

8. FC Dallas - They were a good team last year and are a good one this year. But can they finally win the big one?

9. Colorado - Just wasting time till they get their stadium.

10. New England - They are who they are.

11. DC - The fans come no matter what.

12. LA - As you said, the best of so many worlds.


Blogger scaryice said ... (4:05 PM, April 05, 2006) : 

My feelings on KC are that they averaged 9,000 fans per game last year, and nobody even mentions the viability of the team to survive in the stadium talk (unlike RSL). Unlike Houston and RSL, I don't think being successful would help them get a stadium at all. It's either gonna happen, or it won't.

Although I believe that they'll get it done and won't be moving.


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