It was a busy week for the Seattle Sounders, including the MLS SuperDraft, Harry Shipp’s return and how the CBA is impacting their roster moves. Here are four takeaways from the week that was.
If the last seven days are any indication, MLS is doing an excellent job of keeping interest going in the league 12 months of the year. Certainly, the Seattle Sounders can attest to this.
It’s fair to say the last week has been an eventful one for the Rave Green, including a crucial re-signing, the SuperDraft, and a looming CBA that will have a major impact on the entire league, including the Sounders.
With that said, here are our takeaways from what has been happening recently in the Pacific Northwest.
4. CBA standstill compromises Sounders
Planning celebrations for the 25th season of MLS play is all very well. However, it could all be ruined — or at least compromised — if the league and the players association fail to agree a new collective bargaining agreement. (The current deal expires at the end of January.)
A failure to negotiate a new deal could potentially lead to a strike, which might mean the new season doesn’t start on time. Certainly, this would be very embarrassing in what is meant to be a special year for MLS.
As for the Sounders specifically, the lack of a CBA has compromised their intentions. Training camp is set to start on Jan. 14, but there are still a number of question marks regarding the roster.
In particular, the Rave Green defense is lacking in players — only Kelvin Leerdam remains from the starting back line in the MLS Cup, as talks with Kim Kee-hee are ongoing. General manager and president Garth Lagerway has admitted to being conservative in his moves to bolster the roster, due to the uncertainty surrounding the CBA situation.
As per Ari Liljenwall of mlssoccer.com, Lagerwey conceded that the team is negotiating with a number of players, while also promoting the good foundation of the roster. He’s right of course, but as things stand, it won’t reassure fans, especially with Feb. 20 and the CONCACAF Champions League looming.