The San Antonio Soccer Examiner recently caught up with FIFA Match Agent, and organizer of the upcoming Road to Brazil tour, Mevy-Pierre Azaria, to discuss Major League Soccer, San Antonio’s chances and how these matches get organized. Part One spoke about Major League Soccer, Part Two looks at the future and San Antonio's chances.
SASE: Do you think it will get to a point where it peaks or do you think it will just keep growing from here?
MPA: I think that Major League Soccer could become one of the biggest leagues in the world within 10-15 years.
SASE: So you think Don Garber when he makes that prediction about 2022 could be right?
MPA: I think that, definitely, MLS, has a potential of growth that nobody, in Europe at least, (can match). It’s demography, you only need to see the growth of people from Latin and Central America, their main interest is Soccer, they do not care at all about American football, hockey, baseball or other sports. They love soccer and so more in America begin to love soccer.
I would guess that the United States in the next 20 years for sure there could be a world cup in the United States (note: the next bid is for 2026, Azaria is referring to winning a bid) and Major League Soccer will have better matches. This will lead to MLS growing fast, we’ve seen teams awarded in New York, Orlando and now Miami and there will be others, so the model is working very well.
SASE: Do you think a city like San Antonio has a chance at MLS?
MPA: San Antonio is definitely one of the biggest cities in the US and I find it very logical to have a team there. However it’s always the same situation, you need to find a major investor that would be interested. I am sure that with the growth of MLS and attraction of soccer now, which is not difficult with open minded people.
You need first of all the person with the money, then after that it’s a question of facilities, you need a stadium and San Antonio is lucky that they already have a stadium. There’s also Dallas right here with some of the best training facilities in the country, and then you have a ready made derby right there. You are close also to Mexico, so you have a lot of people who like soccer there. It really makes more sense to have a soccer team in San Antonio than say a hockey team or American football team. Tony Parker should do this, he loves soccer!