The 2020 MLS season has been ravaged by the postponement due to the coronavirus. Here are three ways the season can be salvaged when play does resume.
Like with almost every aspect of life, Major League Soccer has been hit hard by the coronavirus. After only two weeks of the 2020 season, commissioner Don Garber announced the league would be postponed. initially, it was for 30 days, though that has since been extended until May 10th and could yet be stalled further still.
For now, the 2020 season is on hold. No one knows if and when it will return as the world continues to come to grips with COVID-19, following the safety advice of their respective governments and health officials.
So, with everything up in the air and presently unknown, let’s speculate a little on how the 2020 MLS season could be solved, if and when it returns.
3. Balanced schedule, no playoffs
The Supporters’ Shield should be the more prestigious prize. Los Angeles FC are the best team in MLS history, yet because they lost one match in the postseason they are not as celebrated as the Seattle Sounders, who were trounced in MLS Cup but won. Perhaps, then, the coronavirus postponement offers the league a chance to use a more accurate method of determining its victor.
It is still unknown quite when MLS will return and how much time the league will have to finish. Don Garber has conceded that his priority is to play a 34-game season and will push back MLS Cup if need be. But with a truncated schedule the most likely play, could MLS pivot to a 25-game season in which every team plays every team once and a champion is crowned at the end of it without the playoffs?
This would be as balanced a schedule as possible, given that it is not possible to play every team twice, and would also free up over a month that is currently allotted to the playoffs. Let’s say MLS loses two months of its previously allocated timeframe, that month could come in handy.