The most successful domestic league in American soccer history will hold its 20th season next year, and that survival alone is something to be proud of. To celebrate, MLS has released its new logo, a crest that will be gradually rolled out through the end of the year and properly launched in January.
It's actually the sixth logo in the league's history, but the first to drop the "kick" motif that's served for the first 19 years. And don't you worry, fans of branding: they've obnoxiously explained every detail, down to the crest's adorable little tail:
WORDMARK: MLS stands for Major League Soccer.
SLASH: The slash refers to soccer's speed and energy. The slash begins outside the perimeter and drives upward at a 45-degree angle to illustrate both the nonstop nature of our game and the rising trajectory of our league. It bisects the crest to create a "first half" and "second half."
STARS: The three stars represent the pillars of our brand: For Club, For Country, For Community.
PERIMETER: The perimeter represents the lines that mark off the field of play.
FIRST HALF AND SECOND HALF: The first half contains MLS and the three stars. The second half is an open white space that brings you in and out of the MLS world.
"Speed and energy" aside, it's a good logo. Using a crest silhouette speaks to a level of comfort with the sport, just as the old ball-and-cleat logo spoke to the assumption that no one would know what the hell MLS was drawing them a picture. The new one is simple, clean, and professional.
It's also customizable. Every MLS club will wear a version of the crest on their kits beginning in 2015, but in the club's primary colors. Via MLS, the three-tone variations:
If you'd like further buzzwordy explanations of the logo, MLS has you covered.