Portland Soccer Roundup: Commissioner Explores Rule Changes

Garber explores playoff changes, FIFA calendar

Garber Press Conference

Photo Credit: 
(Getty Images)

This week's links include a plethora of MLS rule changes in the works for 2011 and beyond, a former Portland Pilot ends a decade-long quest and the Oregon State women put up a strong showing in the NCAA tournament.

Commissioner Don Garber had a very busy week at the MLS Cup in Toronto, to say the least. First, he announced that the MLS playoffs will expand to 10 teams in 2011, meaning again that over half the league will qualify.

He added that he is looking into aligning the MLS season with the FIFA international calendar (fall to spring) but also said that the league would not adopt a promotion/relegation system anytime soon. Further, the 11th-year commissioner has said that he is aiming to relax the quota on Canadian players in time for the 2011 season.

Looking past this week's expansion draft, the MLS SuperDraft will be held in Baltimore, Md., on Thursday, Jan. 13, in conjunction with the National Soccer Coaches Association of America convention. The four-round draft of college players will follow a four-day player combine in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

The Washington Post Soccer Insider has the scoop on potential 2011 Generation adidas players.

After a full decade as a professional footballer, former University of Portland Pilot Conor Casey finally won a league championship after leading Colorado to an MLS Cup victory Sunday night. He also just so happened to earn MLS Cup MVP honors in the process.

In the first round of the NCAA Women’s Soccer Tournament, the Oregon State Beavers blasted the Memphis Tigers 5-0, led by a hat trick from freshman Jenna Richardson and a school-record 14th shutout of the season by goalkeeper Colleen Boyd. The Beavers faced host Oklahoma State in the second round and took a 1-0 lead just before the break on a goal by Chelsea Buckland, but Boyd was unable to preserve the advantage as the Cowgirls scored in the 74th and 82nd minutes for the come-from-behind 2-1 win.

A reminder to log back on to www.portlandtimbers.com Wednesday at 11 a.m (Pacific) for extensive MLS Expansion Draft coverage.