Over the past couple of years, soccer has enjoyed an increasing amount of success in the United States. The arrival of successful foreign players including David Beckham and Robbie Keane, both of whom signed for LA Galaxy, as well as Thierry Henry who joined the New York Red Bulls, has helped soccer boost its profile in the country.
According to Forbes, average MLS attendance reached 17,872 in 2011, surpassing both the NBA and NHL. There are now plans to expand the league to 24 teams – David Beckham is already gauging expansion opportunities in Miami.
Despite the league’s recent success, however, MLS clubs still trail Europe’s heavyweights in value. The Seattle Sounders is America’s top club, valued at $175 million. By contrast, Europe’s (and indeed the world’s) wealthiest club, Real Madrid, is valued at $3.3 billion.
LA Galaxy, put on the map by David Beckham, is worth $170 million. By contrast, the Englishman’s former club, Manchester United is valued at over $3.65 billion.