Readers sound off on parity, like following Americans overseas.(Wednesday, May 5, 1999) -- A sampling of letters received from our readers.
In response to several features about American players who play in Europe.
Enjoyed reading about Americans Abroad
I enjoyed reading the two recent stories about American players who play in European soccer leagues. It's really tough for us state-side fans to follow how these guys are doing and whether they're getting to play. I really appreciate your reporters' tracking down the pertinent information and giving us updates on the players. It should be exciting to see how Frankie Hejduk does, and I'm excited to hear that Tony Sanneh went on as a sub last weekend for Hertha Berlin.
It's refreshing to read good soccer reporting in American publications. Your section on Hejduk was to the point and gave good soccer analysis, minus all of the other inconsequential stuff most American reporters try to fill their columns with. Good show! Keep it up.
Thanks for another great article! You're doing a great job of promoting the sport. Well-written, very interesting! And thanks for the updates at the end on other players, also. Your fine work is very appreciated.
Enjoys new feature
I would like to thank you for what I am hoping is a new feature (column) on your web site. I am talking about the Americans Abroad piece that lets us know how our boys are doing overseas. I get all my soccer related information of the internet. I love the fact that I no longer have to try and piece together, using my very broken german, how our boys played in germany over a given weekend from german web sites. Thanks again for the great new column.
Likes Americans Abroad
Really enjoy and appreciate your Americans Abroad section. It is nice to keep up on how American players are performing overseas.
U.S. players overseas
I really like the update of American players overseas!
In response to "Parity is the keyword of fourth MLS season."
Parity is fine, but where’s the promotion?
Parity is fine, but rivalries need to be developed and marketed.
Question: At the beginning of the season, you mentioned that MLS needed to enhance the league’s marketing and promotional efforts. Given the flat attendance figures even with Saturday games, what is happening? Has the league increased expenditures and hired real professionals to promote the league and individual teams?
Quite frankly, I have to look long and hard for schedules and promotions. I recently spent several days in a MLS city (Denver) and did not see one ad in the newspapers or on TV.
The season's just begun, Jerry. Must you find something to complain about already? Do you follow soccer anywhere else? Look at the lousy start Man. U. made at the beginning of the current season. Look at the Italian league and the fact that former league leaders Juventus and Inter Milan will have trouble making it into Europe next year.
Juventus, in fact is out. Speaking of Juventus, they made it to Champions League Semi-final scoring hardly any goals along the way!
MLS is in its infancy, growing. Any good parent knows that too much criticism at such an early age destroys confidence. We can all find something to criticize and analogies can be stretched only so far, I admit, but find something positive to write about, like the resurgence of San Jose, with youth and exciting new Costa Rican defender Mauricio Wright.
I'm not saying "don't write critically" about the league or soccer, but parity? Come on ... what's wrong with "on any given Sunday (Saturday night) . . . any team could beat any other"? Where have we heard that before? And somehow, at the end of the season, there will be playoffs and some teams higher than others in the standing, and even a champion.
Exciting future for MLS
I'll keep this short and sweet. Nice editorial. It was informative and made me think about how exciting this league can be, even though the current level of play can be mediocre at times. Thank you for your objectivity and optimism.