I was reading Tim Vickery's most recent weekly column on South American football, and found the following question/answer exchange:
A) I've no inside track on this one, but I'm not particularly keen on them coming into South America's premier club competition. I know Mexico are invited - though that's hit a problem, with the Mexicans now pulling out not just of this year's Libertadores, but of all South American competitions.
For me there are obvious problems with MLS clubs in the Libertadores. One is travelling time and distance. South America is vast enough as it is without heading further north. Another is the effect on the Concacaf region - with the US and Mexico (assuming the row smoothes over) both in, clubs from the likes of Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Jamaica and so are getting squeezed out, and that doesn't seem right to me.
It is an awkward thing to organise between two conferences - but, perhaps anticipating the next question down the line, I can't see that Conmebol has anything to gain from a formal merger with Concacaf.
There are two topics raised that merit further discussion -- one, should MLS teams participate in the Copa Libertadores? and two, will a merger between CONCACAF and CONMEBOL likely or workable? I was actually going to devote a series of posts toward the second question after World Cup qualifying is over, but I may have to start that series sooner than I thought. And as for the first question, it is difficult to argue that MLS sides would raise their play or be sufficiently motivated for the Copa Libertadores when they barely seem to do either in CONCACAF competition.
Answers to both questions need to be fleshed out further, which I hope to do at a later date.