By Ben Wright, editor.
The 2020 Major League Soccer season is coming back.
The MLS Players Association voted Wednesday morning to approve MLS's return-to-play proposal, releasing a statement saying the vote had passed and the new collective bargaining agreement had been ratified by the players and owners.
Per The Athletic's Sam Stejskal and Paul Tenorio, MLS agreed to the 7.5% pay cut proposed by the players, instead of the 8..75% decrease they had initially requested, with the controversial force majeure clause that would automatically trigger pay cuts in the event of attendance decreases being removed from the final agreement.
Under the new plan, teams arrive in Orlando on June 24, training for two weeks before the tournament begins. The three group stage games will also count towards the regular season standings (if or when the full season resumes), and will be followed by a knockout round. The league will presumably hope to resume the season in individual markets after the tournament.
Wednesday's progress is an abrupt improvement to a situation that seemed dire on Monday, with MLS reportedly threatening a lockout if their proposal wasn't accepted. Players were not happy with the league's response, sitting out of voluntary workouts on Monday and Tuesday.
With the CBA ratified and the tournament plan in place, teams will be able to focus on preparing to resume play in just over two months. Clubs were permitted to begin training in small groups last Thursday.
Cover photograph courtesy Nashville SC Communications