According to Elias Sports Bureau, which analyzed 2014 rosters, 57 nations are represented amongst the 543 MLS players. Leading the way: Brazil and Argentina each with 18 MLS players, followed by England and Jamaica, which each has sent 17 players.
Of the 335 players born in the United States and Canada, 71 came from California.
This isn’t really a surprise: Soccer is a worldwide sport. And while baseball is also a worldwide sport, most of the talent entering MLB (which has 25.7 percent of its players from outside the United States and Canada) comes from Latin America, not Europe or even Asia. Similarly, you’ll see a lot of European (particularly Russians, Swedes and Finns) player in the NHL, where 24.9 percent of the players come from outside the United States and Canada, but very few from the rest of the world.
Coming up last in the Elias Sports Bureau rankings: the NFL, where only 2.4 percent of the players come from outside the United States and Canada.
Photo of 2013 MLS All-Star Game by Brett Flanders via flickr.com.