The United States is well known for big time sports like the NFL, MLB, NBA and other big leagues, but the US has not recognized soccer as being a top sport. I believe things will start to change.
Major League Soccer (MLS) started its first season in 1996 with only 10 teams. In 2011 the league had 19 teams, 16 American and 3 Canadian where it also saw an average of 17,872 spectators for all 19 teams. According to an article in Forbes it is the highest attendance in history, above the most recent seasons for both the NHL and NBA for the first time. The MLS league is definitely growing: NBC sports agreed to televise 45 league games last year and closed marketing partners like Adidas, Panasonic, Microsoft, Budweiser and more.
MLS’s CMO Howard Handler said that the reason for the growth is due to the fact that the league has built soccer-specific stadiums, and because their target audience is Gen-Y and a multicultural population, especially Hispanics.
I believe that the league will definitely have a huge impact in the near future on the US population, and more important is that the fan base will reach numbers never seen before.
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