The MLS team names are bright and distinctive with many of them playing on words and using local references for their originality...

WESTERN CONFERENCE
SAN JOSE CLASH
"Clash" is a favourite media word for an intense confrontation between close rivals, and the new Clash team hope to play like a scorpion: quick and lethal, defending by attacking.

LOS ANGELES GALAXY
LA has long had its galaxy of stars in Hollywood and no doubt hopes the new MLS team will also sparkle; the energetic spinning logo should convey the pace of the city and of the game

COLORADO RAPIDS
Colorado is a mountain State of rushing rivers in the Rockies, fast and free as no doubt the fans in Denver hope their team's football will be.

DALLAS BURN
The fire-breathing mustang shows raw horsepower and speed in the high-combustion Texan oilfield; "Burn" is a reference not only to Texas's most famous export but also to the effects of the summer sun.

KANSAS CITY WIZ
No real local connections, it seems, but instead a play on the name of the popular musical The Wizard of Oz – the rainbow strips coming from the musical's most famous song, Somewhere Over the Rainbow.

EASTERN CONFERENCE
TAMPA BAY
Despite Tampa Bay's ocean location and the nautical overtones of the new club name, the logo contains instead what its creators call a "cyber-mutant from the dark blue depths of space ... soccer reaching the fourth dimension".

COLUMBUS CREW
Columbus Ohio has the image of a hard-working Middle American city and the name Crew, together with the three workers in hard-hats, reflect these demographics; the Crew aims to be the hardest working team in the new league.

D.C. UNITED
The only traditional football team name in the MLS, as the team from the federal capital aims for international and community appeal not least through the eagle, a symbol of freedom and strength and of the United States itself.

NEW YORK METROSTARS
The logo aims to project the non-stop activity of a big city that never sleeps, the skyscraper metropolis stretching from home-town New York out to New Jersey and the site of the Giants Stadium.

NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION
A tribute to the crucial role played in the American Revolutionary War, 220 years ago, by this patriotic part of the United States.

MLS: FACTS AND FIGURES
Season starts:
6 April 1996

Season ends:
20 October 1996

Number of teams:

10

Western conference:

Dallas Burn, Colorado Rapids (Denver), Kansas City Wiz, Los Angeles Galaxy, San Jose Clash.

Eastern conference:
New England Revolution (Boston), Columbus Crew, New York/New Jersey Metrostars, Tampa Bay Mutiny, Washington D.C. United.
Regular season:
32 games per team: each team plays four times against the other in its own conference and four times against one team from the other conference: in addition they play three times against the other four teams of the other conference.

Playoffs:
Best-of-three semi-final of the two conference winners plus a final match at a neutral venue.
Budget:
80 million dollars for four years.

Investors:
Boston: Robert and Jonathan Kraft; Columbus: Hunt family and a group of Columbus investors; Denver: Philip Anschutz; Kansas City: Hunt family and a group of Kansas City investors; Los Angeles: LA Soccer Partners, presided over by Marc Rapaport; New York/New Jersey: John Kluhe and Stuart Subotnick; Washington D.C.: Washington Soccer, L.P., led by API and presided over by Kevin Payne.
Dallas, San Jose and Tampa as yet have no investors and may have to be financially supported by the league itself.
Players:
The teams are mostly composed of players from the pool of American college players. In addition there are some overseas players.

Foreigners:
Each team is allowed to have between three and five foreign players under contract.

Most Prominent Players:

Alexi Lalas, Tab Ramos, Mike Lapper (all US national team, World Cup '94), Jorge Campos (Mexican national team) and Marco Etcheverry (Bolivian national team).

Sponsors and Equipment:
League sponsor: Budweiser; Team uniforms and shoes: adidas, Nike, Puma and Reebok; Match balls: Mitre; Referees' outfits: Umbro; Mail order catalogue: TSI Soccer.
Other sponsors: Kellogg Company,AT&T.

TV Coverage:

Ten games will be transmitted on the sports channel ESPN and 25 on ESPN 2. The final game will be transmitted by ABC Sports.