We do this every summer: The European season ends and American soccer fans try to predict the next great European star to come over to MLS to finish his career.
While that logic totally sells short the quality of play in MLS—seriously, if there aren't any European games to watch this summer, it's worth a look—it's fair to wonder who the next megastar will be in the post-David Beckham era of MLS.
This year may be different, however. With the announcement of NYC FC starting play in 2015, the maneuvering for top designated players to become the face of New York's new soccer franchise may have already begun.
Some huge stars have contracts that end before or in 2015, making the prospect of some big names coming to America in the next two years a serious reality. Players like Kaka—long rumored to join the LA Galaxy—could be enticed to make the official move to MLS. His current contract runs through 2015.
Andrea Pirlo signed a three-year deal with Juventus in 2011, and while he looks like he's in his mid-40s, the dynamic playmaker is only 34, which could make a move to New York a serious consideration at that point in his career.
So too might Didier Drogba, who has a year left on his deal with Galatasaray and would be a perfect fit for the style of play in MLS.
Frank Lampard was all but booked for Los Angeles, but what if New York is a better fit for the Chelsea midfielder? He just signed a one-year extension with Chelsea, putting him perfectly in line to become the face of NYC FC.
And what about this—Lampard could bring Chelsea teammate John Terry with him, if Terry is able to secure his own one-year deal with Chelsea. Failing that, perhaps Terry could come to America a year before Lampard. There would be room for him here, in New York or elsewhere.
While rumors always surround Ronaldinho, a name that might make more sense—especially in New York—is Giuseppe Rossi. He missed 18 months with injury, signing with Fiorentina in January but doing little on the field this season. Just 26 years old, Rossi would be an amazing face of NYC FC. After all, the kid is from New Jersey!
Leave your thoughts in the comments...who would you like to see in MLS next season or as the face of NYC FC in 2015?