MLS announced yesterday that the 2010 MLS Cup will be played at a neutral venue. League officials had apparently toyed with the idea of moving the championship match to the higher seed's home stadium but nixed that possibility with yesterday's announcement. No word as of yet in regards to where the match will be played.
"Following a detailed review and careful analysis of both options, we have elected to continue with a neutral-site format for MLS Cup 2010," MLS Commissioner Don Garber said. "We believe this format will provide an exciting environment for our fans while also allowing the necessary planning time for our key constituents. We will continue to assess the possibility of playing MLS Cup at the home stadium of the higher seeded team in the future."
I felt compelled to post this news because of how much I hate this move. Hate. It. I'm starting to think the people who run this league are idiots. Apart from allowing teams/media to make travel arrangements in advance, I see no positives to playing the game at a neutral site. It makes it hard (and costly) for fans to get there. As a result atmosphere suffers. The coveted "casual fan" (whatever that means...) watching on TV sees the bad atmosphere and their perception of the league is affected negatively. This is not rocket science. Play the cup in the home stadium of the higher side. It's better for everyone.