What the MLS referee lockout means for North America’s top soccer league

1 month ago 32

With Messi in Miami and the World Cup coming to US soil, the eyes of the world are on Major League Soccer like never before. It’s only raised the stakes of a nasty labor dispute between MLS and its referees

Major League Soccer referees have been locked out ahead of the beginning of the 2024 season set to begin on Wednesday evening with Lionel Messi’s Inter Miami set to play Real Salt Lake.

The Professional Soccer Referees Association (PSRA), the labor union representing referees who work MLS matches, condemned the lockout by the MLS and the league’s referee employment organization. The lockout, a denial of employment by an employer during a labor dispute, was imposed on the referees after they overwhelmingly voted to reject a tentative new union contract agreement in a 95.8% vote, with 97.8% of the 260 union members voting.

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