Hey, I hope you’re doing well and having a productive week so far!
Between the Black Players Coalition and Perfect Soccer, I’ve been extremely busy. I feel so fortunate to be in a position to do this important work though, and can’t thank you enough for being the consistent, amazing community that has stuck by me.
This week we aired episode 76 of the #AskASoccer Pro Show. Less than 25 episodes until we reach episode 100! I spent the episode addressing the community’s questions, especially the issue of racism in the MLS.
I’ve also written a special article that I’m sharing with just you, my loyal subscribers, here today.
As always, let me know what you think!
Why The Black Players Coalition Is So Important
These past few weeks have been a whirlwind. On Juneteenth, over 70 black players in the MLS announced the Black Players Coalition. After weeks of organizing, the Black Players Coalition announced the news on PerfectSoccerSkills.com, a black-owned news outlet. It’s my pleasure to be a Co-Founder and serve as an Executive Board member of the Black Players Coalition, and I’m looking forward to seeing the impact we have on the soccer community moving forward.
It’s a massive effort to organize something like this, and I would like to thank the Perfect Soccer community for helping me gain the experience needed to be able to help to pull off something of this magnitude. The Black Players Coalition is now a strong group of individuals who are meeting almost daily, connecting with the player pool at large on a weekly basis. We are on a mission to disrupt significantly and change the soccer landscape here in America for the better, and I look forward to every minute of it.
You might be asking yourself, is racism a problem in the MLS that requires this kind of Coalition? Well, here’s what I would tell you based on my 11 years of experience as a player…
I think there’s a discriminatory problem in the MLS. I think it’s there because the MLS needed certain mechanisms in place so that it could get to the level it’s at right now. But I believe those mechanisms are outdated and antiquated, and it is time to self-reflect and understand why the systems were initially put in place. At the same time, we need to realize we don’t need these discriminatory mechanisms; they aren’t necessary anymore. I know it’s scary to a lot of people who are used to things being a certain way. But change is essential in this situation.
I do believe we are progressing in a positive direction, though. Change may be scary because it’s unfamiliar territory for a lot of people, but it’s necessary. Too many individuals haven’t had their voices heard and haven’t been fairly represented for a very long time.
Those who have been in positions of power aka part of the decision-making processes for the system, as it currently stands, have been there too long; they became detached from reality. They became solely focused on expansion for expansion’s sake.
Perhaps MLS has grown too fast. I’ve spoken out about this before, and I believe that MLS has become deeply dependent on expansion. The organization has justified its valuations based on expansion, and it has become a source of income. While this is a means of growth, it isn’t sustainable over the long term. There are other avenues that I believe the league could pursue to diversify their outreach and business model. To pursue these alternate avenues, there is an intrinsic need to rely on the market at large. For MLS to sell their ‘product,’ there must be buy-in from the many individuals who consume soccer.
What if those individuals don’t see themselves equitably represented? Why would they want to invest their time and hard-earned money into the MLS’ product’?
It is in MLS’s best interest to amplify and listen to the voices of black players and to fairly represent them in the league. While giving equitable representation is, first and foremost, the right thing to do, let’s face it; from a business perspective, it simply makes sense. The MLS and other professional sporting leagues in the United States have been built on the backs of black players and other players of color. It’s about time these leagues make sure they are not only investing in their player pool in the short term but also investing in creating opportunities for players to build equity for themselves in the long term.
11-year MLS veteran Quincy Amarikwa welcomes you to the 76th episode of the #AskASoccerPro Show where he breaks down racism in MLS, where to find soccer resources for underserved communities, and how to ditch your loser’s mindset for good!
Check out what Quincy covers:
00:00 – 03:48: Welcome To The #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 076!
03:50 – 5:56: Black-Owned News Outlet Perfect Soccer Announces Black Players Coalition of MLS
5:56 – 7:48: What The MSL mentality Is
7:49 – 11:16: How To Support the Black Players Coalition Of MLS
11:17 – 16:11: How Do You Remain Calm During Practice And Games @steece6
16:12 – 20:36: Is Racism A Problem In The MLS? @george_bastili
20:37 – 24:22: Who’s Back To Training For The Beautiful Game?!
24:25 – 29:21: @GetOnThe Bus Provides Available Soccer Resources For Underserved Communities! @monymikelopez
29:35 – 36:06: Brains Vs. Heart, How Much Of Each Does A Good Player Need? @kristinapodnar
36:07 – 42:03: How The MSL Helped @sammysloboda7 Level Up His Confidence
42:04 – 45:22: ‘I’m In Your Head’ Is Going Viral ?????
45:24 – 50:13: Can Somebody Make A Song Out Of This?
50:16 – 55:55: How To Get Rid Of Your Loser’s Mindset! @MaTTISaNDERSON_
55:57 – 59:46: What’s Quincy’s Next Hairstyle?
Who’s Back To Training For The Beautiful Game?! | PS Clips | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 076
How Do You Remain Calm During Practice And Games? @steece6 | PS Clips | #AskASoccerProShow Ep. 076
Is Racism A Problem In The MLS? @george_bastili | PS Clips | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 076
How To Support the Black Player Players Coalition Of MLS | PS Clips | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 076
Black-Owned News Outlet Perfect Soccer Announces Black Players Coalition of MLS| #AASPShow Ep. 076
What The MSL Mentality Is | PS Clips | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 076
They Don’t Want You To Win | PS Clips | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 075
YOU Are Responsible For The Actions You Take Or Don’t Take | PS Clips | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 075
How To Cope With Being Overwhelmed | PS Clips | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 075
Average to Savage | Quincy Talks Ep.002
Is Racism A Problem In The MLS? | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 076
Is Racism A Problem In The MLS? | #AskASoccerPro Show Ep. 076
This Week On The #AskASoccerPro Show
I’m looking forward to seeing everyone on Thursday when we go live at 6 pm PST/ 9 pm EST with the #AskASoccerPro Show over on Instagram.
Please join in!
Please feel free to shoot me an email if you have any thoughts or feedback.
Looking forward to seeing you on Thursday!
Until next week,
Mental Strength Coach
MSL – Mental Strength League