Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Good Seats Still Available

Aug 29, 2022

The Athletic Major League Soccer staff writer Pablo Maurer steps into our vortex of what-used-to-be in professional sports this week, with a look back at some of the more confounding and overlooked stories of the not-so-distant past of US pro soccer.

It's our deepest dives yet into memorable North American Soccer League gems like 1977's one-year wonder Team Hawaii; 1983's divisive US Men's National Team-as-pro-franchise Team America; the curious Stateside detours of world greats like Bayern Munich superstar Gerd Müeller, Dutch legend Johan Cruyff and Manchester United icon George Best - plus, of course, the NASL's inventive ahead-of-its-time 35-yard-line Shootout tie-breaker.

We also tackle some of the already forgotten early days of Major League Soccer - including its own version of the Shootout; LA's ill-fated "first" second franchise Chivas USA; and impossible-to-forget franchise monikers like Wiz, Burn, Clash, and MetroStars.

PLUS: the unheralded pre-MLS rules experiments of the mid-90s USISL minor league pyramid.

AND: the incomparable (if not incomprehensible) Socker Slam!