Skip to content

Survey says: Handful of MLSers give their assessment of the league

Feb 27, 2013, 12:50 PM EDT

DC United v New York Red Bulls - Eastern Conference Semifinals Getty Images

Eighteen players represent less than a full MLS roster. It’s about three percent of the league, though depending on who Sports Illustrated’s Grant Wahl reached out to for these posts at SI.com (here and here), this could work. If you get the right people, your sample could reasonably reflect the population.

I’ll leave the rest of that to Nate Silver.

More likely, this is just the view of 18 dudes. Is it random? The people at the top of Wahl’s speed dial? Those who happened to be in New York recently to help the league’s preseason promotions?

Who knows, and it probably doesn’t matter. Parse it too much and you lose the fun of this exercise, where Wahl asked his sample a number of hot button questions about the league.

Here are some of the more conclusive outcomes:

  • Thierry Henry got six votes for player with whom you’d most want to start a team. Nobody else got more than two.
  • Players voted 15-3 to ban “artificial turf,” though it should be noted no Major League Soccer team plays on artificial turf. This insane discussion continues. So glad we’re making progress.
  • Best atmosphere: Seattle 9, Portland 8. Which venue got the other vote? Somebody please tell me what I’m missing.
  • New England got 12 votes for worst quality field. Next highest: Vancouver’s carpet with four. No surprises there.
  • Columbus and Dallas both got six votes for least fun city in the league. No other destination got more than two.
  • Fourteen players said retroactive punishment is necessary. Good. I think we saw the positive impact this had last season.
  • Seventeen out of 18 said a gay player would be accepted. These seem like optimistic response, but I really hope it’s true.
  • None of those surveyed knew of an instance of a player being approached by gambling interests.
  • Sixteen agreed with Don Garber – MLS would be a top league by 2022.

Wahl’s survey is 25 questions long and worth your time (it won’t take more than a few seconds to skim it). It may only reach out to 18 players, but where there’s consensus, we get a good idea of where players stand. On some of the issues — retroactive punishment, gay players — that viewpoint’s enlightening.

Mostly, it’s just a fun exercise. There have been some early attempts to glean insight from it, but as Wahl intimates in his intro, this is a fun way to do a preseason preview. Some results were informative, but it’s not necessarily scientific.

It’s just a good snapshot.

  1. pensfan603 - Feb 27, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    I thought this was very informational, When you are asking who is the worst owner its not jsut for fun, But wow, now comes the question which team is it..

  2. dhagentj - Feb 27, 2013 at 7:30 PM

    The other venue with the best atmosphere was probably either Vancouver or Kansas City. Poor Whitecaps don’t get any credit with their two Cascadian brothers just down the road.

  3. jramsdale - Feb 28, 2013 at 12:48 AM

    What you’re missing is that one of the players polled was obviously from Portland or Seattle and refused to say the other team had the best atmosphere (since they couldn’t vote for their own team). No self respecting player from either team would vote for the other with the possible exception of Fucito, if he were polled while in Portland.

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Featured video

PST Extra: Will Man United miss Rooney?