"The lads need time to gel" should replace, "Our all. Our honour," as the team's motto, because I've heard some variation of this phrase every year since the beginning in MLS. That, or, "I think we've finally turned the corner." Pick one!
That said, I'm optimistic. They will continue to be a moneyball team but I have hope that Schuster and his connections will make enough good fit personnel decisions to make this season a relatively successful one. If there is another summer swoon, I think the shelf life of the coach will be question.
Very happy Godoy is back. He will be central to the cause (forgive the pun) this year. He might be a good guy to captain the team, but I suspect MDS will go for a cat like Andy Rose. Which makes little sense considering he shouldn't be a starter in most games. But I am happy to see the Caps putting the pieces together. While MDS has not made nearly as many changes to the roster as he did when he first joined, this team still has a lot of new guys. It is going to take time for them to find their chemistry.
Ha! While I might consider your critique a bit harsh, I have to admit I cannot wait until the day when they've a proper stadium. I think it will happen, but not for quite a while yet. As for the food, what were you expecting? Just down a couple of super over-priced pissbeers, and then anything you eat will taste miraculously...well, slightly less terrible. I just eat the popcorn.
Yes, they changed the format after last season, much to the disapproval of most of the teams. Last season, only the Proximus League finalist and the next two best teams in the aggregate table qualified along with teams ranked 7-15 in the Pro League (9 teams). They would split into two groups of six teams in which the winner of each group qualifying for a single legged final, hosted by the higher ranked team in the regular season. Now it will involve the teams from 7-16 in the Pro League plus the top 6 teams in the aggregate table (including the seasonal winner(s)). They'll go into 4 groups of 4, with the group winners qualifying for the semifinals. I reckon both the semi finals and the finals are two legged. The winner plays afainst the highest ranked team from Playoffs 1 (involving the top 6 teams from the Jupiler Pro League regular season), most likely the fourth or fifth place team for a spot in the Europa League 2nd qualifying round. What a bizarre system indeed. Exciting next month and a half though to see if Leuven will return back to the top flight after several years out, or if someone else will undo their wonderful work from the Apertura.
Interesting related fact: it is possible to collect the most points from the 28 games and not qualify for the final/get promoted. It has already has happened when Lierse collected the most points in the 2016/17 season, only to finish second in both the Apertura and Clausura (won by Roeselare and Antwerp respectively with the latter winning the promotion final). As things stand we would have that same situation happen again as promoted side Virton and Westerlo currently have the most points from 22 games.