The MLS NEEDS To Bring Back The Break-Away Penalties Because Those Look Electric
If you've been following me on twitter you've realized that I've jumped head first into the Premier League. All I needed to fall in love with the sport was to find a team that fit me and have it be authentic and organic passion. That is Nottingham Forest. I haven't missed a game in three seasons and it's been great.
Being an American and coming in with fresh eyes I've felt entitled to take a sport steeped in tradition for 150 years or so and tell the English how they should change it. Playoffs, changing the offsides rules, etc. They have HATED all of my suggestions. That's their prerogative. That's their league. I've shifted my focus to fixing American soccer. We had Chicago Fire goalie, Spencer Richey, on the show this week and he jogged my memory about the way the MLS used to do penalties. Not just letting dudes blast it uncontested from 12 yards. That always seems so easy. Sometimes a ticky tack little foul on the edge of the box leads to basically an automatic goal. The punishment, many times, feels too harsh for the crime.
That's why I want to bring back the break-away. These old clips from the 90s are spectacular
Imagine Messi, Mbappe, and the most skilled guys in the world running in from midfield to try some of the incredible skill plays one on one to score. Imagine giving the goalie and actual chance to make an athletic play instead of essentially guessing and hoping for the best. More skill. More genuinely competitive plays. More excitement. If the Euros don't want to do it that's fine. We can go our own way. Anyone can step up to the spot and score. WSD proved even he, a guy who wasn't allowed to play soccer as a kid by his father, can score from the spot with some regularity.
The people who call soccer "football" will laugh at us, but they laugh at us now anyways. Bring back the breakaways.
Mid Show with Big Cat, Scott Darling, and Spencer Richey below
PS: About the Mid Show…just want to give a quick thank you to everyone who has gotten on board. I know nobody likes change. I definitely don't. This new format allows us to have fun, talk about broader subjects, and then still get into Chicago Sports on Thursdays. Numbers are up. Subscribers are up. Morale is up. We have a ton of stuff planned for the Spring and Summer. Then we get to watch the Bears chase down a playoff spot.