Monday, March 24, 2008
Why I like MLSrumors
No, that's not a typo... MLSrumors is a website (actually a blog) on mlsrumors.blogspot.com (as with my own blog). It started up last summer as the league became more of a household name around the world (thanks, Beckham) and it gave details on rumored player transfers, coaching changes, and soccer-specific stadiums among others. So why do I like it? Well, to start, I visit it religiously several times a day along with the more "official" sites such as Steve Goff's at the Washington Post and ESPN's Ives Galarcep. The website has broken news on players such as Marcelo Gallardo and "el piojo" Lopez coming to the league and Eddie Johnson's departure as well as Philadelphia and Seattle getting new teams. It also keeps us up to date on the league's inner workings (that no one wants to talk about) and its relationship with other tournaments (e.g. Libertadores). Who doesn't want to know about these things (non-soccer lovers aside)? And the best part is that it has grown so much since its inception. Just recently they posted that they had reached more than a million hits from people worldwide and you can track their visits on their hit tracker visual (which I have, incidentally) and that they were the highest ranking website of its kind. Newer websites such as mlsrumors.net have sprung up recently but they pale in comparison to the legions of people that submit potential news/rumors related to the league (myself included). In fact, they have published at least 4 of the 8 rumors that I sent their way. Most of these concern Ecuador-MLS moves and tidbits from XM Deportivo. So what else does this new website have to offer? Well, considering the amount of followers/rumors, I'd say that more fans of the game are taking the league seriously in the post Beckham rule era. Tracking of the superstar has eased up considerably since his numerous injuries and the LA galacticos plain sucking last season, but following other stars such as Jozy Altidore and Brad Guzan are making headlines worldwide. In addition, the new influx of "brand name" players to the league, which includes Chicago's Blanco, has elevated the level on the pitch and this has registered with the media in this country (inside its own niche, of course) as well as internationally. This has also translated into elevated play internationally, with the United States gaining important wins outside of the country and other CONCACAF teams becoming more competitive (just look at the U23s... Mexico eliminated and Honduras and Canada looking impressive). Point is, more people want to know what's going on with the league and its immediate surroundings. The league isn't providing enough information and the more respected sources of sports news (i.e. ESPN and Fox) aren't quite getting it. So this blog has stepped in, revitalized interest and spurred an array of mirror sites to whet the appetites of soccer fans like yours truly. That's why I like MLSrumors.