Soccer fans in South Florida have an interesting event to look forward to next week. The SPORTELSummit Miami Beach will bring a number of important figures in the sports world together to discuss the issues of the day. However, there are some notable absences that leave participants and followers asking: What happened?
In a way, most of the people who were told about the North American Soccer League’s decision to cancel the 2018 season were ready for that outcome. It almost seemed as if it was destined to happen after all of the events leading up to this point. Hell, the most pessimistic supporter of an NASL club could have told you the writing was on the wall after the tumultuous offseason of 2016-17. Be that as it may, Miami currently has zero professional clubs ready to play in a professional league for the 2018 season.
Losing anything isn’t nice. Losing a soccer match can hurt. Losing your keys is annoying. But there’s nothing like losing your sanity as you follow a legal battle between the league your soccer team plays in and the nation’s soccer federation. A battle that leaves a team without a league, players without jobs and supporters with a lot of summertime weekends free.
Another off season full of drama has been provided by the NASL and the USSF. Unfortunately for Miami FC supporters, this offseason has had a prolonged “inevitable doom” feeling. Unlike last season, this off season was viewed from the distant shore as a storm that could bring some reckoning. Reckoning, it has definitely brought upon the NASL.
Writing this on the day of the NASL’s 2017 Soccer Bowl seems fitting. A day where any fan of The Miami FC would be much happier heading to the Riccardo Silva Stadium to see the culmination of an incredible season in the Soccer Bowl versus the Deltas.
But thanks to Gio Savarese’s stubborn Cosmos side our season has been over for seven days. A long week of thinking what might have been.
Four billion dollars. And now a court case. You’ve got to give it to Riccardo Silva, when he puts his mind to something he really goes at it! Loads has been written about the merits of promotion and relegation and if it can work in North America.
I think it’s something that needs to happen but there’s obviously some opposition. So how do we turn a few more people on to the idea? How do you sell the terrifying, gut-wrenching fear of relegation to American sports fans? Well here are some options.
Riccardo Silva couldn’t have dreamed it when he first formed The Miami FC.
9,000-plus fans. A hot but beautiful night. Major League Soccer competition on the field against his squad. A back-and-forth affair keeping everyone in their seats until the final seconds, when a Miami FC player streamed toward goal and finished a one-on-one opportunity to send the club into the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup quarterfinals.
His, and many other, dreams were realized Wednesday night when Miami FC dispatched yet another Major League Soccer side from the U.S. Open Cup, this time toppling Atlanta United 3-2 with one of the best finishes a soccer fan could ever hope to see.