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The MLS Hall of Fame: Preview Edition

What is a “Hall of Fame”?

Well, it’s just a museum really – a place most people avoid like the plague because it makes them use their brain. But, unlike art, history or science museums, “Hall of Fames” are usually dedicated to noteworthy members of an organization. So, there’s a Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, an (American) Football Hall of Fame in Canton, a Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, a Golf Hall of Fame in Florida and even an Insurance Hall of Fame.

Where’s that one? Alabama, of course.

But, what about a Hall of Fame in America dedicated to MLS? Well, there isn’t one. I know what you are thinking: what about the National Soccer Hall of Fame in Oneonta, New York? Well, that’s not an MLS Hall of Fame even though some MLS players end up there. You see, that hall of fame honors (1) members of the US National Team and (2) players (whether US or foreign born) who played at least five seasons in a US first-division pro league (currently MLS).

To make it as a foreigner, you also have to win either the league championship, the U.S. Open Cup, or be selected as a league all-star at least once. So, as you can imagine, most of the best players who have ever played in America (i.e. foreigners) aren’t actually in the National Soccer Hall of Fame because they didn’t play here long enough or they never lifted a major trophy. MLS doesn’t have its own Hall of Fame, so I have decided to create my own here at STO.

Over the next two weeks, I will be enshrining the first ten members of the MLS Hall of Fame (according to STO). What’s my criteria for selection? Well, the player obviously had to be dominant on the field. In addition, he had to be a major influence on the league either through his style of play or his importance to the popularity of MLS. Finally, he had to separate himself from other notable players of his era by winning titles or putting up unimaginable statistics.

So, please come back to STO over the next two weeks to learn about the first 10 inductees in the MLS Hall of Fame. I will tell you about each player’s life in general and their feats in MLS. I will also select one piece of memorabilia from the player’s MLS career to be placed along his theoretical bust in my hypothetical Hall of Fame. All in all, it should be good fun, so keep coming back each day to see who gets in and who gets snubbed.

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