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Why I hate this time of the year in the CONCACAF Champions League

This whole MLS vs Liga MX thing gets pretty annoying.

Leon v LAFC - CONCACAF Champions League 2020 Photo by Cesar Gomez/Jam Media/Getty Images

Welp, it’s that time of the year again. Listen, I’m going to be honest. As somebody who has progressively gotten more into Major League Soccer in recent years but still watches every Liga MX match that comes on TV, I hate it.

Let’s get one thing out of the way. MLS is not better than Liga MX. Come on, I just watched Carlos Vela score 30+ goals against a whole bunch of bums. I still have PTSD from one LAFC game back in May of last year against the Montreal Impact where Vela completely ruined Daniel Lovitz’s life on repatead occasions. At some point, I genuinely started feeling bad for the guy. This brings me to point number one of things I hate about this time of the year...

1) MLS Fans that think their league is better than Liga MX

I get it. Fanaticism, rivalry, yada yada yada. But it gets a little ridiculous and almost-childish like. I hate going on social media and seeing the crappiest arguments as to why the “gap has closed”. I am not saying MLS is an amateur league or anything like that. In fact, in a business sense it’s a lot more professional than Liga MX (just get rid of that salary cap!). I mean an actual player’s union and up-to-date training facilities? Ha, what’s that? The only interests Liga MX teams have in mind is how to get that Televisa dinero.

Nonetheless, the reality of things is that the on-the-field product is still a lot better in Liga MX. While some teams in Major League Soccer have made great strides in improving both tactically and technically, we are talking about the minority here. There is still tactical concepts that are hard to grasp for most teams in Major League Soccer. It all reminds me of a recent quote from China international Gao Lin when talking about ex-coach Marcello Lippi.

”Lippi can be considered a world-renowned professor and some sort of leader in the area. He has many strategies and good ideas,” said Gao. “But for Chinese players, we are still like high school students. We might not fully understand the coach’s tactics or we are not capable of carrying out his tactical plans 100 percent.

Of course, we can delve deeper into the problems within U.S. Soccer’s development system, but that’s a long discussion for another day.

2) Liga MX fans that think their league is the English Premier League

Just because Liga MX is better than MLS doesn’t mean it’s that great. Let’s be honest, you can make the argument Liga MX has gotten progressively worse. Yeah, the Liguilla is exciting and TV ratings make a killing, but what is that really all worth? Maybe I am just boring, but below average defending and no more Sábado Gigante can only get you so far. There is even teams in Major League Soccer that have established better sporting projects than most Liga MX teams. Just look at LAFC, Atlanta United, San Jose Earthquakes (we miss you Matias Almeyda!), and previously New York Red Bulls under Jesse Marsch. All projects aimed at elevating the level of the league. Who do Liga MX have? Miguel Herrera and Ricardo “Tuca” Ferretti?

Then there is the Liga MX fans that just refuse to accept that MLS is gaining relevancy but still take to social media to drag the league any chance they get. I’m going to hate to be that guy when both leagues eventually merge together sometime in the future. You know it i$ happening.

3) I’ll let one my colleagues summarize this one

Then there is stuff like this.

Do I need to say more?