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New rules put MLS on fast-track to more talent

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Giovani dos Santos is being linked with a move to the MLS
Giovani dos Santos is being linked with a move to the MLS

Giovani dos Santos

Word is the Los Angeles Galaxy are in advanced talks with Mexican super-baller Giovani dos Santos and expected to sign him to the largest contract in league history.

The 26-year-old Mexican National played as an attacking midfielder for Spanish side Villareal and also had a stint with Tottenham Hotspur.

Signing Giovani would be a very popular move in Los Angeles, due in part to the city’s large Mexican population. The move would also make the Galaxy clear favourites to win their sixth MLS Cup.

You may ask yourself, how are the Galaxy going to pull this off with the current salary cap restrictions? The same restrictions put in place to promote slow and steady growth.

It’s a concerning some people. The MLS has seeming made a new rule up just in time for LA Galaxy to sign Giovani. Some are even calling the new rule the “Galaxy Rule”.

MLS Salary Cap Change

Major League Soccer’s salary cap rules are convoluted and confusing, to say the least. The Target Allocation Money rule announced last week is no different.

Without getting too technical, each team is essentially able to sign three “Designated Players” for as much money as they want, by buying down their contract with “Allocation Money”. Each Designated Player then only accounts for $350,000 against the salary cap.

Now Major League Soccer has introduced “Target Allocation Money”, which is a way for teams to sign a fourth, big money player. The Target Allocation Money allows teams to buy down contracts of existing Designated Players, thus opening up another Designated Player spot.

Ultimately, this is a good thing for the MLS, it puts league on the fast-track to becoming one of the stronger leagues in the world. Large market teams like New York and Los Angeles that want to spend money to bring in more top-notch talent, now they have the mechanism to do so.

Downside, this new rule will mean less parody in the league. The smaller market teams could suffer because they will not be able to keep up with the spending of other clubs and owners with deep pockets.

The previous cap rules gave owners a sense of security. They would only have to spend a curtain amount of money to field a competitive team. Now some owners could be forced to sell if they can’t keep up.

Forcing or encouraging ownership change of some teams, is probably not a bad thing. One thing holding the league back are these owners and the rules put in place to protect them.

Will this new rule open the floodgates to more talent in the MLS?

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