Monday, July 24, 2006

It's Official.

DC United vs. Real Madrid
Qwest Field, Seattle, Washington
Wednesday, 8pm PST (11:00pm est)

Yup, United are getting pimped out to Real Madrid by MLS and have to fly across the country to play a friendly against a bunch of guys in pre-season. They are doing this all so Real doesn't have to compete for fans who might decide to attend the Barcelona vs. Red Bull New York match the following Saturday at Giants Stadium. I know I am not the only one who is at the very least, a little mifted at this match.

Ok, I understand why Garber & Co. are pimping out DC United. They are the best team in the league and after the debacle that MLS had last year with the Select Team vs. Real, Garber is at least smart enough to have a club play Real rather than a group of guys brought together for a match. Instead, he will learn that mistake several days before when a pre-season Chelsea still bitch slap the MLS All Stars.

I can understand why DC United agreed to play in this match. Who wouldn't want to play Real Madrid. Most of the Real Madrid players make more in one season than the entire roster for DC United. They have Beckham, Ronaldo, Raul, Robinho and so on. This is a chance of a life time.

I can understand Real Madrid wanting to play DC United. They are in pre-season training mode and if you are going to play clubs from leagues that are below the skill level of your league, why not play the best club in that league? They will get more of a fight against United than they will when they obliterate RSL.

The biggest thing that I don't really understand, even though I know why they decided it, is why the hell play it in Seattle? Real wanted the match on the West coast due to being based in Salt Lake. I understand that. So, play a Western Conference club. FC Dallas would make a good match. When United were told that the match was in Seattle, they should have said, "Thanks, but no thanks." The MLS season and US Open Cup mean more than this match, and due to the travel and such, they might just screw those both up. United doesn't have enough road matches right now? WTF???

The ability of Garber & Co. to just pimp out United for the quick buck is amazing. They now have just over two weeks to market a soccer match in a part of the country with no MLS outlet; taking place between two clubs that have no history in that area; have totally spit on the fans of DC United by not trying to get this stellar matchup scheduled for a stadium at least within 5 hours driving distance; and risk causing a major impact on the league season and USOC future of the MLS club involved.

I doubt that they get more than 30,000 fans to show for this match. DC United vs. Real Madrid in Charlotte, North Carolina would have made that much, if not more.

I just lost more respect for MLS.


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