Inter Miami Top MLS Lockdown POWA Rankings
The MLS returned this week, three months after being suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. The landmark ‘25th season’ celebrations have been dampened but Don Garber has devised the ‘MLS Is Back’ tournament with all matches taking place ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World, Florida. FC Dallas won’t be taking part after 10 positive Coronavirus tests from the squad. The rest of the teams are in groups and the top two or three will advance to the round of 16, culminating with the final on 11th August, the champions earning a place in next year’s Concacaf Champions League.
Top of the MLS lockdown rankings are Inter Miami, who played their first-ever MLS game against Los Angeles FC in March. The Herons lost two away fixtures before the shutdown and the long wait for a home game has been made even longer, and when it does happen, it will be without supporters. During the lockdown, co-owner David Beckham has been promoting the club to his huge social audience and even posted an Instagram showing off his shooting skills in the club stadium, to the delight of their social media audience.
LA Galaxy (2nd) made three high profile signings in the off-season to try and fill the void left by Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Javier 'Chicharrito' Hernandez, Alexsandar Katai and Sebastian Lletget, however Galaxy had two poor performances pre-lockdown and recently had to part ways with Katai because of a social media controversy, and there's been much speculation from the fans as to how the team will move forward from their current state of disarray.
Atlanta United (3rd) are missing Venezuelan talisman Josef Martinez who suffered a torn ACL at the start of the season, however their performances pre-lockdown, the Five Stripes were one of four MLS teams to start the season with two wins, sees them as one of the favourites to win the tournament, and their fans are excited about the prospects of Frank de Boer’s team.
Vancouver Whitecaps take 4th spot, the Canadian team notching up their 10th MLS campaign. Whitecaps made the digital transition during lockdown confidently and co-owner Steve Nash played his part, fronting a training workout on the club’s Instagram account, with the team and fans taking part at home.
DataPOWA C.E.O. Michael Flynn said: “The Covid-19 lockdown has accelerated the change in the way fans engage with their teams, and the MLS teams at the top of the list are using their digital channels to reach and engage with the fans. Of course having a David Beckham or Steve Nash to create social content is going to amplify any message beyond the usual reach, and clubs need to think creatively during lockdown and use any resources to hand."
MLS and other top global league lockdown rankings are available ‘free to view’ on POWA index here.
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