Soccer has long been a global sport and is something that every kid enjoys playing at some point. The sport is growing on a professional level and particularly in the United States.
Surely, sports betting will pick up when the 2026 World Cup is hosted across the United States and parts of North America. But the real growth in the States is with Major League Soccer. That is a great sight for such a big country that has not had as much success on the national stage.
The growth is really something that has been good for the country. When MLS was founded in 1996, it wavered between 10 teams and 12 for the first decade of its existence. By 2012 it had added seven teams, but it was stagnant with 19 teams for three years before adding a 20th team in 2015. Beginning in 2017, the league added nine teams since then to bring the total up to 29, which is really remarkable growth for the league.
It has gone to great markets that support its professional sports teams, such as St. Louis (2023), Charlotte (2022), Nashville (2020) and Cincinnati (2019). Los Angeles added its second team to the city in 2018.
Incredible Early Success
Look no further than St. Louis, which paid $200 million in expansion fees to join the league, to see what success can do. They became the first team to win their first five matches as a franchise, and their 15 points are five more than any team in the Conference West.
They play an aggressive, attacking style that is appealing to watch and creates different chances. It is something that a lot of soccer teams do not do when they are ahead, but City remains on the attack.
They also have a bright star in Miguel Perez, who is 17 years old and is a hometown favorite. It is possible that he will become a big player on the international stage as his body matures and he sharpens his skills.
A Bright 2026
Perhaps those skills would be used with the United State Men’s National Team in the 2026 World Cup. Of course, that would be surprising, but his career is already off to a great start.
The Americans advanced to the tournament stage of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, which brought great hope as the event moved to North America for its next tournament.
One of the great things about the growth of MLS is that there are more soccer stadiums, so less turf will be used, which is a complaint for many. Maybe the Americans will bring home gold on home soil.
The team’s fan base and support
The new MLS soccer team has quickly developed a passionate and dedicated fan base, with supporters coming from all walks of life and backgrounds. The team’s success on the field has been a major factor in generating excitement and enthusiasm among fans, with many eagerly attending games and showing their support through social media and other channels.
This support has helped to create a sense of community and pride around the team, with fans coming together to celebrate their victories and stand by the team during tougher times. The team’s fan base and support have been crucial in creating a strong foundation for the team’s continued success and growth in the MLS.
What’s Next For MLS?
It appears that MLS is still looking to expand. Commissioner Don Garber said in 2018 that “Detroit, Sacramento (and) San Diego are still in active discussions with us.” Plenty has changed since then, though.
Detroit was going to build a $1 billion development, including a new stadium as part of its original pitch. The charge was led by Pistons owner Tom Gores and Cavs owner Dan Gilbert, who are both business owners from Michigan.
Recently, Indianapolis is a city which is known for hosting great national events that may enter the mix. A group developed a plan for a new stadium and entertainment district that would be a bridge between where the minor league Indianapolis Indians play and the Indianapolis Colts’ NFL stadium. They may not be going after MLS initially, but the Circle City is a great sports town and good hub for national events.
As recently as February, Garber said San Diego is still an option for expansion. There was a new football stadium built that could serve as host should that be deemed allowable by the league.
The booming city of Las Vegas remains in rumors to be a possible expansion destination. Other professional sports leagues have planted teams there, with the Golden Knights of the National Hockey League and the Raiders who moved from Oakland in the National Football League.
Rumored leagues such as the National Basketball Association and Major League Baseball are potentially eyeing expansion teams in the gambling hub.
The new MLS soccer team’s historic pace and impressive performance have made a significant impact on the league and the broader soccer community. By quickly establishing themselves as a top team in the MLS, this new team has drawn attention to the growing popularity of soccer in the US and the potential for new teams to make their mark on the league.
The team’s success has also had a positive impact on the local community, with a growing fan base and support for the team. This support has helped to create a sense of unity and pride among soccer fans in the area and has helped to grow the sport’s popularity in the region.
Furthermore, the team’s success has put pressure on other MLS teams to up their game and compete at a higher level. This competition has helped to raise the overall quality of play in the league and has made for an exciting and dynamic soccer landscape in the US. By building on their success and maintaining their commitment to excellence, they can help to drive the growth and popularity of soccer in the US and inspire other teams to reach new heights.