Since the beginning of the current MLS (Major League Soccer) season over 10 globally know names have entered several different clubs/franchises.
Players such as Didier Drogba, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard and Shaun Wright Phillips from England. Kaka, Andrea Pirlo and Giovinco from Italy, not to mention David Villa and Dos Santos from La Liga, have all touched down stateside.
The one thing in common all these players share, excluding Dos Santos and Giovinco, is that they are all 'past it' and are all more than likely to end up retiring at their current clubs then heading back to compete in the Champions League from whence most of them came.
SUBMIT AN ARTICLE
Apply to become a GMS writer by signing up and submitting a 250 word test article: http://gms.to/haveyoursay5
Good or bad?
Now, this poses the question; 'is the MLS on the rise, or maintaining its status?'
Many argue that these players are stopping home grown players from playing first team football and that MLS is increasing its reputation of becoming a retirement league in which players can earn some extra cash and live a luxury lifestyle in the States.
The other side of this argument is that the young American players on the fringes of the first team are only going to learn from these ex-Champions League winners and progress more as a player.
Not only are they inspiring to play along side but for the fans to be able to see World Cup winners, it's something they will have never seen before and now they get to witness this week in week out.
Under 12 months ago, NYCFC introduced Lampard as its marquee signing, benefiting from his star power while selling jerseys and nearly 12,000 season tickets for its inaugural season.
Both during the press conference and on the team’s website, NYCFC claimed Lampard as a confirmed player on “a two-year deal which starts Aug. 1."
But as Lampard’s return to New York was delayed because of his surprisingly good play with Manchester City, the midfielder was said to be on loan from NYCFC. The story began to unravel.
As it turned out, Lampard never signed with NYCFC or Major League Soccer in 2014, instead making a non-contractual “commitment” to join the expansion club in January. His deal was with City Football Group, the umbrella company of both Manchester City and NYCFC.
This alone shows the impact that star players have on the fans in the USA with many fans admitting to have purchased a season ticket in the hope to see Lampard playing for their club throughout the season.
So where do you stand? Should the MLS be sticking to its roots and promoting US talents or do the aged super stars improve the league? Have your say below.