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Now is the time for Elimination Soccer

this is the blinding light at the end of the tunnel

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Because it has always been time for Elimination Soccer.

Last year, MLS moved to single-elimination playoffs. Fine. Whatever. It has elimination in it but that’s just...look, that’s...that’s a coincidence and something I didn’t consider before starting this very good blog post. The thing about those single-elimination playoffs is that as we continue with the formart, we’ll see more and more games go to extra time.

And then if they’re still tied after extra time, the entirety of a season will be decided on penalty kicks. A relatively un-soccery thing. It’d be like if tie football games were decided by how many touchbacks in a row your kicker could have. Exactly like it. Don’t question it. Just let the means wash over you until we get to the glorious end.

To solve this clear and obvious problem, we have to get rid of spot kicks at the end of extra time. We really have to get rid of the end of extra time in general.

I mean it will eventually end. But theoretically we could have this thing running for eternity. Why do you not know what I’m talking about? Because I buried the lede and this is a poorly structured article.

Elimination Soccer is the answer to all of the problems with ending a match on spot kicks. Here’s how it works. The first extra time period happens as normal. If the tie is broken at the end of 15 minutes, then the match is over. But who cares about that. Players will probably just let the game stay tied so they can get to the majesty of Elimination Soccer.

When the next extra time (which should really be called infinity time because in Elimination Soccer and in life, time is a construct) period begins, so will the culling.

The match is now golden goal. Whoever scores wins. But here’s the twist. Every five minutes without a goal, a player from each team is required to leave the field.

That’s right. Things are getting less crowded in here. And let’s be honest, the players probably want a break anyway. They’ve been running for 110 minutes.

The teams can choose which player they want to take off. And it continues like that until someone scores. Theoretically, we could see the best possible outcome of goalkeeper vs. goalkeeper one on one for MLS Cup. Goalie Wars with stakes and actual soccer.

With Elimination Soccer, not only do you have a game decided by actual soccer, the chances are going to come at huge rate as the numbers go down. And think about the drama of pulling a player off. Can you imagine Josef being pulled off the field in the 130’ and just losing his mind? Managers decisions on who to pull would be criticized intensely. Do you pull midfielders first? Try and mix it up? Forwards? WHAT DO YOU DO?

You do nothing. You just sit back and enjoy Elimination Soccer. The direct Four Loko injection to the vena cava we all deserve.


That’s my dumb soccer idea. Share your dumb soccer ideas below. Show your work too, dammit. Let’s fix this deeply, deeply broken sport no one likes.