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Bruce Arena Focused on the Wrong Problems

After speaking with LA Times columnist Kevin Baxter, Bruce Arena misses the mark by a mile on what plagues Major League Soccer.

John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Bruce Arena was given Kevin Baxter's ear recently, and used it to voice his displeasure about Major League Soccer's travel accommodations to the Los Angeles Times columnist. Hell, I think we all can agree flying coach sucks. But there was something he said that really rang a bell.

I'm embarrassed that we travel that way. I don't think it helps the reputation of our league.

To that, I have just one question for ol' Brucey.

This is what you find embarrassing for the reputation of the league? Flying like regular people? Jesus, Bruce, let's try putting that in perspective here. You know what I find embarrassing for the reputation of the league? This trash.

Nothing says "We take ourselves super seriously" like jamming a rectangular peg into a baseball diamond-shaped hole because New York City. Granted, I've never built an international soccer league, so maybe I don't know what I'm talking about, but something tells me the playing surface should be taken seriously if your league is to be taken seriously.

Or what about high-profile executives lasting less than two months before heading home? Or a team that is caught tampering, disciplined, and then is caught tampering again? How about a front office that spends 95% of its $7,507,300 Designated Player costs on just one -- effectively part-time -- player? Nah, that doesn't do it. Carrying your own luggage to the plane is the real problem.

To sum it up, Bruce -- if flying coach is enough to pull the word "embarrassing" out of you, then you don't know shit about embarrassing. Enjoy the playoffs.