If you are like me, soccer was a sport you played when you were very young but then ignored as a fan the older you got. I'm fairly typical in that except as I was growing up in the New York metropolitan area we did have the Cosmos which featured such all-time greats as Pele, Carlos Alberto, Franz Beckenbauer and Giorgio Chinaglia. Those players, along with others kept the Cosmos up in popularity especially after the team moved to Giants Stadium.
Well, those days did come to an end and soccer has been slowly gaining strength in America and since 2014 is a World Cup year we do expect the popularity of soccer to crescendo during the year. The Cup should be a boost for MLS too as more attention id focused on the sport. It’s also interesting to me that several of my co-workers are much more into soccer than any of the other "major" sports and that is, I believe, no longer unique among fans. Into this world comes the 2014 Topps MLS hobby release which follows up on the surprising success story of the 2013 product. Not many collectors were truly paying attention but 2013 Topps MLS was a surprise collecting hit as the price went up upon release and never settled back down.
This year, each box promised three autographs and three relics in each box. The borderless cards feature the player's photo in the middle with the player's name, team and team logo on the bottom. The backs, for the most part, have enhanced stats as Topps is experimenting with a new stat design. My local card store (Triple Cards in Plano TX) mentioned he did not get involved as he thought the product was too pricey but leading on-line retailers are currently between $95-100 for these boxes which contain 24 packs and 10 cards per pack. That means the cards have an average cost of 40 cents each.
How did we do from our box?
Base Cards: We did receive 190 cards and I did notice some duplicates. However, since there are a few SP's, one should be able to either finish a base set from a box or trade a few singles to finish their set
Short Prints: Kyle Beckerman, Mike McGee, Graham Zusi (2 of this card)
Blue Parallels (#d to 50): Scott Caldwell, Michael Harrington, Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, Dan Kennedy. Ashtone Morgan, Andrew Wenger
Gold Parallel (#s to 25): Gershon Koffie, Chance Myers
Black Parallel (#d to 10): Jack McBean, Oriiol Rosell
1976-77 English Premier League: Matt Besler, Clint Dempsey, Federixco Higuain, Mike Magee
Generation Adidas: Jack McInerney
Supporters Group: Seattle Sounders
World’s Stage: Kyle Beckerman, Jeremy Bengston, Chris Wondolowski, Graham Zusi
Relics: Matias Lara, Chris Wondolowski, DeAndre Yedlin
Relic Autographs: Victor Bernandez
All autographs we pulled were on stickers .
With more than a handful of cards numbered to 50 or fewer and the six hits, there is little doubt MLS Soccer, like the other "non-major' sports is able to provide more punch for the dollar than other sports card products. It does appear the second year of MLS Soccer is in good position to beat the skeptics again.
You can see what's available on eBay here.