Pat Brennan

| Cincinnati Enquirer

FC Cincinnati GM Gerard Nijkamp discusses the 2021 squad

FC Cincinnati GM Gerard Nijkamp discussed with local and national media members on January 28, 2021 issues related to the club’s squad and the upcoming season.

Pat Brennan, Cincinnati investigator

Football fans and professional athletes from across the country have made it clear that they are hopeful that Major League Soccer and the MLS Players Association can avoid a work stoppage.

On Wednesday, the eve of the deadline for negotiating amendments to the existing collective agreement (CBA) between the MLS and MLSPA, MLS players received widespread support from some of the most prominent player unions in North American sport, including the NFL Players Association.

“Athletes support athletes,” read a tweet from the NFLPA. “We support all players and stand together with the @MLSPA players when they fight for fairness. # LetThemPlay2021”

“Today we are watching closely as our brothers, who are represented by the Major League Soccer Players Association, face an impending lockout,” said a statement by the Major League Baseball Players’ Association on Twitter. “While the league is already providing far more than a fair share of relief to Major League Soccer, the league is pushing them for more. Enough is enough. Let the players do what they do best – play football at its finest and Entertaining millions of fans. ” North America.”

The National Basketball Players Association also posted a statement of support for MLS players on Twitter: “NBPA stands in solidarity with its union brothers in the MLSPA.”

Unions representing United Soccer League players, Women’s National Basketball Association players and other sports organizations have also joined forces as the dispute continued in MLS.

The new season of the league opens on April 3rd. The pre-season training camps will open on February 22nd. Both dates are at risk if the league’s owners and players fail to meet CBA terms by 11:59 p.m. on Thursday

As the league weighed the complications and financial losses from the novel coronavirus pandemic, the MLS club owners and MLSPA returned to the negotiating table in December to renegotiate a CBA for the third time in a year.

Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic that has financially affected the MLS and the prospect of further loss of revenue in 2021, the parties are looking to resolve issues ranging from player compensation to the duration of the CBA, which will impact the MLA has been distributing money from future TV deals.

MLS claims that in 2020 sales of $ 1 billion were lost due to complications related to pandemics.

The MLSPA claims it has already made a fair share of concessions in order to continue league-wide operations. In a January 28 press release, MLSPA said it had already made more than $ 200 million in financial concessions.

If a lockout began, MLS players would become free agents who could move to clubs in other parts of the world, although existing contracts with MLS clubs would replace agreements with international clubs at the end of a lockout period.

This week, the Cincinnati FC Support Groups have also given the players a hand and encouraged the parties involved in the negotiations to continue the season as currently planned.

Downtown, The Pride, Hangar 937, based in Dayton – Cincinnati FC-recognized support groups – tweeted letters of support for the players, including the hashtag “# LetThemPlay2021”.