This offseason has been unbelievably awesome for the entire league. In our little Orlando bubble, we've been blessed by the signing of one of Uruguay's brightest young stars and an in-his-prime European goalscorer. And when you look at the entire league, that's just the start.
The Chicago Fire just signed Swiss superstar Xherdan Shaquiri as a Designated Player on a nearly $10 million transfer from Lyon in France. The "Alpine Messi" is still only 30 years old, and even with a lengthy injury history, still has the legs to be elite when healthy (just look at his performances for Switzerland).
This move comes about a month after Toronto FC announced the signing of Italian superstar Lorenzo Insigne on a free transfer from Napoli in Serie A. Insigne is also only 30, and per Transfermarkt values, would be the most valuable player in MLS history by a looooot.
Oh, and Atlanta United just dropped $16 million on Thiago Almada, arguably the highest rated young player in the western hemisphere. And Dallas dropped a club record on Alan Velasco, another hugely talented young Argentine. And Charlotte FC are about to sign an in-his-prime Venezuelan international winger from La Liga.
The amount of incoming talent and the prices MLS clubs are willing to spend to get them is truly unprecedented and mind boggling. I'm not here to wax poetic about what this means for the league or for Orlando City's place in it, I just want to enjoy this.
I'm a huge fan of Major League Soccer. My brother got me into the league around 2015, coincidentally when I moved to Orlando and Orlando City joined MLS, and I absolutely adore this league and all its weirdness. To see how big and bold it's getting just fills me with joy. This is MLS actually reaching its potential, actually pushing itself higher up the global soccer hierarchy. To see this type of ambition this soon just fills me with joy and hope.
This season is going to be freaking awesome in MLS. Basically every team is appointment viewing for some reason or another. Genuine stars are everywhere, storylines are spilling anywhere you look. There's almost too much exciting stuff to keep track of. And for fans like you and me, this is one hell of a time to be alive.