Sources: MLS Players Won't Be Able To Endure Long Labor Dispute
MLS players are now "more organized, better prepared and, thanks to rising salaries over the last five seasons, wealthier than they were during the last round of CBA negotiations," but a sample of club execs, agents and former players "still don't think they will have enough leverage to take meaningful power from ownership" during the next negotiations this winter, according to Sam Stejskal of THE ATHLETIC. Sources said that they "just don't see the players as able to sustain a strike for a significant period of time." At most, they "think the MLSPA will hold out for a couple of weeks." Sources said that the "real battle over the next CBA won't be between players and the league, it'll be between competing factions of owners -- those who want to open things up, and those who prefer to maintain slow and steady increases in spending." Sources said that ownership groups from "high-spending clubs" like LAFC, Toronto FC, NYCFC, Galaxy and Atlanta United "would prefer to open things up a bit." But they expect longtime FC Dallas and Revolution owners the Hunts and the Krafts to "lead the more conservative faction." Sources were "divided on which faction of owners would win out in this CBA negotiation." One club exec "thinks most will be aligned on incrementally increasing the salary cap, then they'll duke it out over more ancillary items like the number of charter flights allowed to each team and whether or not the league should continue" with targeted allocation money (THEATHLETIC.com, 9/6).