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Stuck in Last Year's Thinking - MLS Still Targeting Wrong DPs

IMScouting is saying that MLS is targeting the following 5 players for the Secondary Window this summer - Thierry Henry, Robert Pires, Patrick Vieira, Ludovic Giuly and Camel Meriem. If we assume that this is true, and since the first three have been linked fairly frequently it may be, this is an indication that MLS is still stuck in MLS 2.0 mode when the Designated Players had to be perfect.

Henry, Pires and Vieira are attempts at signing the type of player that was ideal for the old DPs rules. Relative icons, potential difference makers, they occupy the same land that Beckham, Blanco, Angel and Ljungberg do. Old players, icons, very expensive, and yet needing a team with a few more quality men.

Giuly is 33, and while on the wrong side of peak for a forward at least he is being sought from a lesser league. Signing him would be about what he does on the pitch and not on the airwaves. Meriem is more intriguing as he's younger (still 30)  and from a league that is marginally better than MLS. That may be an indication of a slight shift, looking for good players, only slightly older, but ones making lateral rather than downward moves.

All five players have their final shot at a World Cup with only Henry and Vieira having good shots at making the South Africa squad, but it should be noted that NONE will be on the 2014 National Team. The name players that are going to be attached to MLS over the next two transfer windows will be players who are done with their National Team experience. With at least 26 open DP slots though MLS should not confine itself to those players and instead should use the shift in rule to shift its thinking. Get PRE-PEAK players using MLS as a ladder up, not as a walker for post-peak players headed to retirement.

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