MLS TO AIR ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Twitter has netted US MLS rights in a three-year deal, buffering its live sports offer with live matches, highlights and features available to US Twitter users.
The first broadcast was a big one with Real Salt Lake going down 5 – 1 to the expansion pioneers of Los Angeles FC, if Twitter were hoping to bring in viewers with an epic first game then tick that box off. Twitter will air fixtures every Saturday for another nine weeks before some Friday and Sunday games hit the web.
As reported by The Drum, Chris Schlosser, senior vice president of media at MLS, said: “MLS constantly strives to connect with fans in new and innovative ways. Our fans are the youngest and most socially engaged in pro sports, which is why we are excited to partner with Twitter to feature live matches on their platform.”
Kay Madati, vice president and global head of content partnerships at Twitter, added: “We are excited to collaborate with Major League Soccer to bring live soccer matches and video highlights to Twitter. Passionate MLS fans will now have live match day action alongside real-time commentary from experts and fellow fans all in one place on Twitter.”
PARTNERSHIPS THE ORDER OF THE DAY
While MLS and Twitter have announced their partnership, following behind are the MLS with Mexico’s Liga MX. Canada, United States and Mexico are jointly bidding for the 2026 FIFA World Cup and the partnership is designed to strengthen the sporting offer in North America.
Showcase competitions will be the order of the day with the leagues holding an annual Campeones Cup between the respective league champions, building on the growing rivalry between both leagues in the CONCACAF Champions League
This year’s edition will see Toronto FC host either 2017 Apertura champion Tigres UANL or the winner of the current 2018 Clausura Liga MX season at BMO Field on September 19th.
“Major League Soccer is proud to come together with Liga MX for this unprecedented partnership,” MLS Commissioner Don Garber said in a statement. “Together, we have a vision to elevate the popularity of our game to even higher levels in North America. We are excited to have the MLS champion take on Liga MX’s top club in the Campeones Cup this year and build further programs in the years to come.”
In addition, a future MLS All-Star game will feature players in both leagues squaring off in a match pitting Major League Soccer vs. Liga MX. The annual MLS Homegrown Game will include a Liga MX Under-20 club team as the annual opponent, continuing a tradition established in previous years.
PLAYER OF THE WEEK
The week two Alcatel MLS Player of the Week is Los Angeles FC’s Diego Rossi.
The 20-year-old Uruguayan scored two goals and made three assists in the aforementioned demolition of Real Salt Lake over the weekend. MLS statisticians reveal that It was only the sixth time in MLS history a player was involved in five goals in a single game for his club.
The Alcatel MLS Player of the Week is selected each week of the regular season by a panel of journalists from NASR. The group consists of members of print, television, radio and online media. Rundown expects a call at any time now…
NEW CONTRACT FOR CJ
Philadelphia Union have announced that CJ Sapong has signed a new contract, ensuring that the target forward will remain under contract with the club through 2019, with a club option for 2020. Sapong, now 29, set the Union’s all-time record for goals in a season in 2017 (16), the best haul of his professional career and level with Sebastian Giovinco for eighth-most in MLS.
“We are pleased to complete this agreement with CJ, a critical part of the spine of our team,” said Union sporting director Earnie Stewart in a club statement. “He fits perfectly in our system with his nose for goal and his hold-up play. We’d like to thank him for his hard work and commitment to the Philadelphia Union and we look forward to working with him for years to come.”
Sapong originally entered MLS as the 10th overall pick by Sporting Kansas City in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft. Over four seasons in KC, the Manassas, Virginia native and James Madison University product helped Sporting win the 2012 US Open Cup and 2013 MLS Cup before moving to Philadelphia in a 2015 trade. Since then he has scored at least seven goals in each of his three seasons with the Union. Sapong has earned four international caps with the US national team.
New England Revolution are interested in signing Fulham’s US youth international Luca de la Torre on loan for the 2018 MLS season, according to British outlet westlondonsport.com.
Colorado Rapids are thought to be continuing their recent transfer activity by signing unattached striker Yannick Boli to a deal using Targeted Allocation Money, as per Sam Stejskal at MLSsoccer.com.
Minnesota United FC general manager Manny Lagos and head coach Adrian Heath are headed to Panama to scout Club America striker Darwin Quintero.
Thank you for reading the MLS Rundown, a twice-weekly column focused on news, rumours and transfers. If you would like to connect with the writer, please do so on twitter @CT_MLS