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The Daily Dirt, March 17: MLS on Facebook

Will you be watching?

Justin Mapp dribbles Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Tomorrow’s Atlanta United game will be broadcast on Facebook Live, a first for the league. Will you be watching it via that method?

I was skeptical of broadcasting on Facebook when CONCACAF first starting experimenting with it for the Champions League. Some of those early streams were really dodgy, constantly getting stuck, and had consistent audio issues. However, CONCACAF has improved their product greatly over time and watching the Dallas vs. Pachuca game this week was great.

Hopefully, Univision Deportes has learned from some of CONCACAF’s mistakes and tomorrow’s broadcast goes off without a hitch. Veteran play-by-play voice Mark Rogondino will be on the call with former USMNT defender Heath Pearce.

As broadcast rights for sports continue to evolve, this is a bold step for MLS. There have been rumors for years about the league making big changes to their MLS Live product, maybe this could be a step in that right direction? Over-the-top programming offerings are showing success and MLS could really make a name for itself by continuing to think outside the box in this area.

The television rights game in the sports industry might be getting closer to its ceiling. It is getting increasingly harder for networks to pay the types of rights fees the major properties are seeking. Smaller properties like MLS might get squeezed in the future as resources dry up. Finding other avenues for broadcast and creating new revenue streams is a smart move to give the league more options going forward.


Domestic

Chicago off to a good start this season in MLS (The Loop)

MLS veteran Justin Mapp on trial with Orlando City (Orlando Sentinel)

Adrian Heath says that Minnesota United is still trying to bolster the squad in some spots (MLS)

Is Providence Park in Portland the best American soccer stadium? (FourFourTwo)

Three in the back a possibility for the USMNT according to Bruce Arena (MLS)

International

The UEFA Champions League quarterfinal draw is complete (SB Nation)

Local

Soccer is a uniting force at the Fugees Academy (Atlanta Magazine)