MLS has missed out on a major transfer target, and Liga MX is the beneficiary. On Friday, Japanese international Keisuke Honda announced that he signed for Mexican club Pachuca after being out of contract at AC Milan.
Honda was linked with MLS, mainly expansion club Los Angeles FC, and this is a big miss for the league. A talented player with still plenty to give, his signing would have brought massive exposure for MLS in the Asian market.
If you don't know how Japenese media operates and how much it follows its stars, go back and look at much of baseball star Ichiro's career or even the abbreviated career Daisuke Matsuzaka. The media coverage of Japanese stars abroad is like nothing else, and this will certainly increase the Mexican league's exposure, while MLS misses out.
But considering LAFC doesn't enter until next season, Honda was likely looking to play now and not wait. Also linked with the Los Angeles Galaxy and New York City FC, a deal couldn't get done in MLS, and now he gets to experience a unique league like Liga MX, joining one of its best clubs.