Unreleased B-Sides: “Other” Americans Abroad

There are number of columns out there that rattle off the “Americans Abroad”…that is those typically in the public eye and candidates or former member of the USMNT whose squads had games over the weekend and how they fared.

Typically, we’ll do some here-and-there of Americans abroad games we watch, offering a little more in-depth than just a stat line to give you a feel of precisely how they did.

This week, we offer the converse. Americans, most whom you may not know, and what’s their situation beyond the shores of the States.

Consider this your supplemental Americans Abroad column.

Jeremiah White:

Following in JC's footprints...

A few people made a stink in November of last year when Bob Bradley didn’t call one-time USMNT Camp Cupcake attendee and Benny Feilhaber teammate when the U.S. came in peace to Aarhus last November to face the Danish team.

White had an uneven year and found himself on the outs with Aarhus.

After rumors last year that MLS newcomers Philadelphia Union were going to sign the winger who grew up in the area, White finds himself now with PGE Górniczy Bełchatów in Poland’s 1st division.

He got his first start last weekend in a 1-0 win; however, he was an unused substitute this past Sunday when Belchatow defeated Europa League qualifier Lech Posnan, the club that Jimmy Conrad once called home.

Gabriel Ferrari:

The once former super prospect was transferred out by Italian side Sampdoria after going out on loan to lower division sides for the last three years.

His new zip? Alps Country, FC Wohlen in the Swiss 2nd Division Challenge League.

He’s been in town for a few weeks now playing for the senior team but awaiting his first action of the campaign. Ferrari was not called to the 18 this past weekend when Wohlen drew Locarno.

Ferrari is just two years removed from three deposits in just four appearances for the U.S. U-20 squad.

Chicago bound...

Eric Lichaj:

We just like giving Lichaj a lot of pub; he really doesn’t belong in this piece.

Welcome to the U.S. senior camp this week, Mr. Lichaj. Big things expected.

If you read TSG, then you knew about Lichaj…hmm…well before Conor Casey sent the Yanks to World Cup 2010.

Lichaj wasn’t in the 18 this week or the week before that in league play. He’s been getting time in the reserves. Our guess?  If he doesn’t start getting run, he goes on loan to a weaker EPL squad or a Championship side come Sunday.

Quentin Westberg:

The now 24-year-old French-born-to-an-American-dad-keeper reached out to the States back in 2003 and has 16 camps with the U.S. U-20 squad to his credit.

Up until September of this year, Westberg played with Ligue One side Troyes. If the club name Troyes is familiar to uber-Yanks fans, well that’s because the club has hosted two notable Americans over its history:  Johnny-Come-Quickly fullback David Regis, made famous by Steve Sampson’s 1998 squad, and the needs-no-introduction Joe Gaetjans.

However, with Troyes sliding now two leagues (they begin the 2010 in the 3rd division), Westberg has moved his career in the other direction, jumping up to the 2nd division with a refreshing contract at Evian.

Westberg starts as the #2 keeper behind Bertrand Laquai, but with Laquai red carded this past Monday, Westberg stepped in immediately and earned a shutout in a draw with Boulougne. He returned to a non-used substitute role when Evian tied Clermont Foot on Saturday.

Below, Westberg’s promo tape from the last year.

Preston Zimmerman:

The name Jared Jeffrey likely rings a bell, but playing on the FC Mainz reserve team with Jeffrey is American Preston Zimmerman.

The 21-year-old Washington State local who featured ten times for the U.S. U-20 typically plays in attack. While Jeffrey is a staple of the team’s midfield, Zimmerman has yet to feature this campaign.

Johann Smith:

If not for a coaching change and some injuries, U.S. fans may be rooting for both Stu Holden and Johann Smith at Bolton.

Smith was scouted and signed by Bolton when he was just a teenager. He played youth ball and then Smith, who you could consider Roy Lassiter II, it would appear suffers from Freddy Adu Syndrome. He had World Class speed to go with early development, but then flatlined in that development way too early, specifically done in by a lead first touch.

After playing a year with MLS’s Toronto FC, Smith has bounced around quite a bit due to injury and performance.

He was last in Saxony, Germany playing with 3rd division side Dynamo Dresden. But a review this weekend of their roster doesn’t have his name.

Stay tuned.

Baby bro, seen here with the New Mex Lobos, plays leftback

Euan Holden:

Speaking of Bolton’s Holden, younger brother Euan Holden is trying his luck across the pond as well.

Baby Holden was putting in work first at Danish 1st league side Vejle Boldklub, but was subsequently released. He had a trial afterward at SPL side St. Mirren which didn’t stick either.

He now finds himself at English League Two side Crewe Alexandra.

Let’s hope this kid develops because he plays left back.

Ryan Guy:

It’s not the weather for this guy.

A San Diego native, Ryan Guy was drafted in 2007 by MLS; however, he promptly moved over to the Leauge of Ireland (the 29th ranked league in UEFA) and has been playing with Dublin’s St. Patrick’s Atheltic.

Guy has over 100 appearances for St. Patrick’s. Saturday St. Patrick’s tied Sporting Fingal 2-2. Guy went 90 on the wing and is mentioned prominently in the match report.

Kid’s got a little Rory Delap in him as well (see below).

Grella, currently a thorn in Leeds United side...

Mike Grella:

You may see Grella listed on a few normal Americans Abroad list.

Our guess is that his name is followed by “Grella, not in the 18 for Leeds United.”

Seems like Grella has taken some advice from Kenny Cooper: twice this season Leeds have agreed to loan deals for the New Yorker (to Oxford United and Bradford City) and twice Grella has turned the moves down.

Grella has a little less than two years left on his three-year deal, but with little pitch time and drawing the wrath of manager Simon Grayson who’s position at the club is secure, get used to “not in the 18″ until at least January.

Bobby Wood:

Brian Ching has some company coming from the isles.

Kenny Cooper may be a more household American name, but with Cooper still battling to return from a broken ankle, Hawaiian Bobby Wood gives Americans two players who could eventually feature with 1860 Munich.

The 18-year-old Wood is currently starting for Munich’s U-23 side and this past Saturday snapped in a header for the insurance score in a 2-0 win for his side over SpRgg Weiden in the reserve match.

We'll start keeping tabs on this guy...

Adrian Ruelas:

Here’s a guy you want to keep on your radar.

The Santos Laguna of the Mexican League player was lights out in announcing his place in the pecking order for the Yanks this summer at the Milk Cup.

The 6’2” 19-year-old striker Ruelas went bang-bang-bang, netting three as becoming star numero uno for the U.S. U-20.

Now Ruelas has parlayed that performance to loan-with-option-to-buy move from Santos to SPL bully Celtic FC. Should Ruelas impress and secure a work permit this January, Yanks fans everywhere will start throwing him name around like…like…the second coming of Conor Doyle.

Chris Ordonez:

Ordonez came up through a certain Spanish academy that a certain Lionel Messi came up through: Barcelona.

After a series of injuries, Ordonez found himself trying to re-discover his path in Argentina, but he was still able to gain three caps for the United States U-20 team.

Ordonez is now averaging three goals a game for a small outfit out of El San Francisco Proper playing Wednesday evenings and ironically is a teammate of this column’s writer on FC Black Sox.

Sorry Chris, couldn’t resist. You know I’m your biggest fan.

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7 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Ryan R. on 2010/10/03 at 10:48 PM

    Playing Wednesday evenings? The US plays on a Wednesday evening coming up. What ever shall Chris Ordonez’s teammate on FC Black Sox do?

    Reply

    • Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/03 at 11:01 PM

      Ha…two things..I always put playing over watching. That said, we’ve move to Thursdays next week. :>

      Reply

  2. Posted by Paul Antonissen on 2010/10/04 at 4:17 AM

    I believe that’s Bobby Wood, not Brian

    Reply

  3. Posted by Ric on 2010/10/04 at 9:55 AM

    Another guy off most people’s radar is Charles Kazlauskas of Helmond Sport in Holland. From Milwaukee, left for Holland before his senior year of high school. Had a great youth/reserve career with NEC but struggled to crack the first team. Dropped down to the Second Division in 2005 and has been a regular ever since. He’s versatile, normally at right outside midfield or right back, but has also been used at center back and as a striker at times when needed. Hardly ever misses a game because of injury and usually goes the full 90. He’s 27, so he’s not young, but he intrigues me.

    Reply

    • Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/04 at 9:59 AM

      Ric:

      Thanks for the note. I kind of consider him (in the manner he went to Europe and his hometown) Jay DeMerit II.

      Reply

  4. Posted by DeuceForPrez on 2010/10/04 at 2:01 PM

    I thought Lil Holden was considering playing for Scotland?

    Reply

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