By Mike Max

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — It’s been a wild ride already for Major League Soccer. Starting a season; stopping; then semi-resuming.

Minnesota United FC just want back to games at Allianz Field in St. Paul, but there might be a detour to get there.

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They are at least working out, but how about this idea to play in Orlando? Midfielder Ethan Finlay has this to say.

“Making sure that the competition is worthwhile. We’re going to be putting our bodies on the line and, you know, it’s important that, not only from a competition standpoint but from a competitive standpoint it makes sense,” Finlay said.

It seems the ideal would be … actually, there is no ideal in sports right now, according to owner Bill McGuire.

“I think right now it’s fixed. I don’t think we know enough about how it really would work and how we’d make sure it all works out,” McGuire said. “Obviously what we want is to be in front of our fans. And if not that, at least at our stadium.”

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The key to this league is that they started the season, and when they stopped, head coach Adrian Heath and the team stayed in Minnesota and kept working out.

“It never really stopped. You know, they’ve been training, they’ve got their own individual programs,” Heath said. “Ethan [Finlay] can speak to that. He’s got his own program since the game after the San Jose game.”

Finlay says training conditions matter.

“When you start to combine working with the ball in tight spaces and whatnot, you know, you start to get a little more tired a little quicker,” Finlay said. “So that little soccer aspect comes back quickly, but it’s been a really big step this week to get the ball at our feet.”

McGuire is a medical doctor who served as CEO of a health insurance company. Did he ever think he’d see something of the magnitude of the COVID-19 pandemic?

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“There was some pretty big death tolls in the 60s, for instance, that were realized, and then we all remember, at least me and a lot of people that worked in it, what started in about 1981 or 82, it was AIDS, HIV,” McGuire said. “And here we are, many, many decades later, and we don’t have a vaccine. We figured out some ways to deal with it.”

Mike Max