Quick one today as I'm grading my hundredth 10th grade essay with only sixty 9th grade essays to go (and yes, I do wonder what other jobs are like, thanks for asking) but if you haven't already heard, Joleon Lescott has an offer to go the MLS. Portland, to be specific.
A couple of points:
- The MLS has gotten much, much better over the years. Gone are the tackle football fields and their ungodly lines, replaced by actual football stadiums made for soccer (sorry, had to use the word). Additionally, the MLS has developed a loyal and rather rabid fan base.
- You will find no fans more loyal and rabid than in the Pacific Northwest. Seattle packs them in by the thousands with enough energy to match any group of fans in the world while Portland can make the same claim.
- More on Portland: they are MLS's professional victims and I mean that in the best way possible. Every Portland fan will tell you they get jobbed by the refs in every single match, that their northwest neighbors are favored by the league, that their little town is as good as anybody, dammit, and one day they'll hoist the MLS Cup skyward and then the rest of the country will see, dammit! Oh, how they will see! So... yeah, they're a pretty passionate up there.
- Finally, if Joleon goes to Portland, he'll be a God there with a capital G. While it's true the MLS has gotten better, it's also true that most of the coin allowed to be spent by the teams (they've got a salary cap) gets spent on guys who put the ball into the net--midfielders and strikers get the monster checks. So the defense in the league is, well... offensive is how I'd put it. Lescott will absolutely be the best defensive player in the league by a goodly stretch.