USA on the soccer field #3 - Poll: should have access and downgrade in the country's leagues?
Photo via St. Louis

A very common question among soccer fans is: "why the leagues of the United States don’t have access and downgrade?" As in other sports, soccer follows a unique model in relation to other countries in the world.  A format that is unlikely to change and that has allowed many championships to develop, mainly, financially. Let's take as an example in this text the Major League Soccer (MLS) and the USL Championship.

All the teams that make up the MLS are "partners" outside the soccer field, so each team in a league is considered a franchise of this "company". For a team to enter a tournament it’s mandatory to pay a fee. For example, St. Louis paid $200 million to start playing Major League Soccer only in 2022.

If there was a downgrade, it would be as if a partner in a certain company stopped investing in the business and started investing in the competitor. In addition, it wouldn’t be fair to the teams that paid the fee to join the league. Let's suppose: St. Louis paid those millions of dollars to play the country's main competition in 2022, this same year they announce that there will be a downgrade of the MLS to some lower league, the team can’t adapt in the first year and, therefore, is downgraded. The franchise will already have a minimum loss of 200 million dollars.

Another point is the budget difference between the teams in the USL Championship, the league closest to the MLS, and the other major teams in the country. Investment conditions are completely different from hiring players to infrastructure.

Of course, inside the soccer field, increase the competitiveness between the teams. Mainly, already in the final stretch of the regular season and at the bottom of the table. However, we must analyze not only these aspects but the extra-field as well.

Currently, nothing prevents a United Soccer League team from playing Major League Soccer. Just invest and be within all parameters. Orlando City and Seattle Sounders are examples of franchises that have moved from the USL to MLS. But, generally, there’s no such decrease in teams for other championships. In this cases it’s common to see teams go bankrupt. For this project to happen in a sustainable way one day,  a partnership was needed between these "companies".

Now it's up to you! Dear reader, do you believe that should have access and downgrade in the country's leagues?