The debate overfavoring MLS or European-based soccer players as members of the U.S. men's national team has become prominent the last couple years.
Jurgen Klinsmann, who was fired as manager of the U.S. Men's National Teamin November after two World Cup qualifying loses, mostly favored American-born players playing their football overseas.
Former USMNT assistant coach Andi Herzog said thatMLS had no interest in listening to advice from Jurgen Klinsmann.
"MLS, the American league, is getting better and better, but Jurgen wanted to help them and give them some information, some inputs, where they were making some mistakes," Herzog said, via ESPNFC. "Jurgen said, 'Yeah, we need to do this, this and this better,' and this was the reason why he started to have a fall-out with the [commissioner] of the league, Don Garber.
"Jurgen wanted to help the league keep improving, but [MLS executives] were not happy and thought he was just criticizing everything. One point Jurgen was not happy with was that they were buying and overpaying over-aged former European superstars like crazy, but they have already found out that it is not a good way.
"And this was a big problem, because there was a big pressure from [Garber]. ... When we lost a game, [Garber] came and said: 'No, he's criticizing our league and he's making some mistakes, too.' So this was a problem —a bad relationship between the American league and Jurgen."
During his time as manager, Klinsmann started a number of players who played their professional soccer overseas. Guys like Fabian Johnson, John Brooks, DeAndre Yedlin, Christian Pulisic, Julian Green, Bobby Wood and Geoff Cameron played integral roles at one time or another during Klinsmann's tenure. They all play in Europe.
When Clint Dempsey and Michael Bradley left their European clubs to return to the States in 2014, Klinsmann said they would have to prove their form. The MLS did not like that statement.
Now, the USMNT is run, once again, by Bruce Arena, who has always shown a propensity to favor MLS players. With so many top Americans playing in the best leagues overseas, it will be interesting to see how Arena develops that talent over time.
The MLS may not like it, but the English Premier League, German Bundesliga, Spanish La Liga and Italian Serie A are much stronger leagues. If Americans get chances to play for teams inthose leagues, they should jump at the opportunities.