Early bird tickets for Baltimore’s BEST party on sale now!

Hale is confident MSL will stay afloat in rough waters


Owners and prospective owners in the Major Soccer League will meet in Chicago tomorrow to determine the state of the league.

Blast owner Ed Hale said yesterday he does not see the future of the league, currently comprised of seven teams, in jeopardy.

"I've talked to some of our owners and they're ready to go," Hale said. "The only question marks are Pittsburgh, Dallas and Kansas City."

Kansas City folded last week, but according to new reports, the Comets could be back for the coming season. A City Council ordinance that would allow the use of up to $70,000 in city funds to support the team for up to three years was presented to Kansas City's Rules and Audit Committee today.

One of the stipulations in the proposal, however, is that 90 percent of the previous ownership agree to come back as the ownership group.

The Comets folded when, at the last minute, they were unable to come up with investors to contribute $70,000 each of the next three years.

MSL commissioner Earl Foreman was scheduled to be in Kansas City today, before heading to the ownership meeting in Chicago tomorrow.

Also on the agenda in Chicago are division alignments, schedule and a proposal for playing indoor games during the summer, a proposal Hale said he does not support.

"Some owners say that since the players will still be under contract, we should try to play," Hale said. "They think there are good dates available at the arenas, but the reason there are good dates is that no one wants to come inside in the summer."

On the Dallas front, Hale said he expects an ownership application to be reviewed by the MSL. As for Pittsburgh, Hale said his conversations with majority owner Bernie Mullen lead him to believe the Spirit is leaning toward playing in the MSL this season.

"The only disappointment is Buffalo," said Hale. "They've decided to wait until next season before actively participating, but they have already set up their offices and doing the detail work."

The Buffalo situation was supposed to be up in the air, as to whether the team, which will be owned by the NHL's Buffalo Sabres, will operate in the MSL or the National Professional Soccer League. But Hale said all conversations have indicated the team will come into the MSL next season.

"The people operating that franchise know the difference between our league and that league," Hale said. "We're not a bus league."

Copyright © 2019, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad