You may have noticed that Freddie Ljungberg has transferred to Celtic. Depending on his form this could really wind up being the final stage of a watershed move for MLS.
If Freddie can be a strong contributor to Celtic, it will kick open the door for players unwilling to accept transfers to Bottom 10 or Second Division (or lower teams) and rather accept transfers for DP money stateside regardless of age with the hopes of rebuilding their careers, cashing in and returning to former glories. Ironic eh?
For my money, Becks and Donovan have already proved that top caliber MLS players can step into top level European teams and be contributors. Can Freddy affirm this?
Could the MLS, make up for the next ten years be:
1. 65%- CONCACAF and fringe African up and comers (examples: Ream, Pappa, Nyarko)
2. 20% - Just shy of national team or fringe national team players from South America (Fernandez, Conde, etc.)
3. 10% -Rehabbing/Reclaimation Euro/Mexican "Stars": (Ljundberg, Castillo Collins John, etc.)
4. 2%- Retiring Euro Stars (Henry, Stoitchkov)
5. 3% - Height of power, world class (or near world class) players (Donovan, Bravo, Beckham, DeRo, Marquez)
Certainly some bone can be picked as to the time periods where I'm classifying some of these guys, but I think the major buckets have been hit. It is also important to note that without the DP rule, #3 and #5 would not even be options.
The other big Celtic/MLS story is the "unauthorized" training of DeRo with the Hoops. There is quite a bit of press over the Freddie move in Glasgow, but this DeRo thing should be the front page news. Although he is only one year younger than Freddie (32!, I know I was shocked too), he has always had "it" and would be a huge loss of MLS. Heck, just the historical significance of being the only strong pick up of the Trader Mo era makes DeRo worth keeping. Jeez, this thing is really coming full circle!