Wednesday Follow-ups: Champs, Rooney, LD10

Wednesday follow-ups:

• Champs League:

Champ's League'ing

Mo Edu and Jermaine Jones cut the grass in Champion’s League action today.

Edu and ‘Gers take on Mata and Valencia who have been on form all season.

Jones and Schalke host Hapoel Tel Aviv. The only recognizable name for on Tel Aviv is former Espanyol and Portsmouth man Ben Sahar. Sorry folks.

Both are listed as starters.

• Niggling for Houllier:

Shaun sent me this text on Saturday after we both watched Villa draw Chelsea: “I still wish the US had courted Houiller. That was an all around top performance from Villa and they should have won it!”

Couldn’t agree more. FIFA technical review from Houllier aside, let’s just saw the Frenchmen should have been at least an option for USSF. At least he’ll coach three Americans this season.

• It’s Spin City over at Old Trafford today.

Nine times David Gill....9 times I asked you to bring in Benzema or Silva or someone!

Let me start by posing this question? If Wayne Rooney’s decision to move on was really exclusively about “ambition” as his statement today illuminated and about the “lack of ambition” of the Manchester United board and ownership than:

(a) Why did he pledge his support to Manchester United in March after two windows where the team didn’t outlay any cash from the Ronaldo sale?

..and…

(b) Assuming Rooney is speaking merely to developments this year–a, than he must be talking about developments in this transfer window, no?

Well take a look around Wayne, no one really spent this August. At least United secured Javier Hernandez, Bebe, and Chris Smalling. Beyond Manchester City, the other top four from last year didn’t splash the cash.

Arsenal brought in Chamakh, but that was on a free. There only other acquisition of merit was Sebastien Squillaci. Nice, but not thrilling.

Chelsea may have brought in Ramires and Benyaoun, but they also saw Deco, Joe Cole, Michael Ballack, Ricardo Carvalho see their way out of Stamford Bridge.

Tottenham got Van Der Vaart last minute on the cheap and their “big one” was none other than the spry youngster who is William Gallas.

No….

First here’s Rooney’s statement today:

“I was interested to hear what Sir Alex had to say yesterday and surprised by some of it. It is absolutely true that my agent and I have had meetings with the club about a new contract. During those meetings in August, I asked for assurances about the continued ability for the club to attract the top players in the world. I never had anything but complete respect for Manchester United. How could I not have done given it’s fantastic history and the past 6 years I’ve been a part of.

For me it’s always about wining trophies which the club has always done under Sir Alex Ferguson. Because of that the questions I asked were justified. However, when I met with David Gill last week, he didn’t give me any assurances I was seeking about the future squad. I then told him I wouldn’t be signing a new contract.

Despite recent difficulties, I will always owe Sir Alex Ferguson a huge debt. He is a great manager and mentor who helped and supported me from the day he signed me from Evertonwhen I was just 18. For Manchester United’s sake I wish he could go on forever because he is a one-off and a genius.”

Given that Rooney has not been playing, that Sir Alex Ferguson–who has been playing silent with the media across the board this year–just yesterday felt compelled to discuss Rooney’s injuries including being stretchered off the field instead of something in the vain of “Rooney is re-evaluating his relationship with the club,” today’s comments by Rooney smack of damage control.

They have everything to do with frustrations at his own performance, frustration and not playing and–as we wrote yesterday–a keenly navigated way for Manchester United and Ferguson to get top dollar for a star they don’t want to continue to bank on (excuse the pun).

Hence Rooney chalking up his desire to play for as big a club elsewhere (read: one that can actually afford him) and the new challenges that come with it.

Lest I turn my head at Manchester United ownership, this week’s development and last week’s Liverpool fiasco certainly have the vice turned on the owners from Florida. Get ready for Liverpool II developing at Old Trafford…unless this situation, against the odds, can come out smelling like roses.

Right now, the Glazers are losing every which way.

Lando isn't as young as he once was...he's likely smarter now though...

• Is the sentimental favorite enough? I now think so…

Had some discussion with various folks yesterday regarding the Landon Donovan buzz and “potential” funds earmarked for Everton as part of Wayne Rooney’s sale from the Toffees to the Red Devils. The clause is that Everton gets 25% of any forthcoming sale of it’s former academy player Rooney over the value ($27M) that United paid for him at the time.

Two buggy-before-the-horse points first:

• Rooney can’t get dealt until January and may not get dealt in that window.

Say Rooney is dealt at the earliest though, it probably takes most of the January window make and finalize that deal. I have a hard time seeing Everton purchase in advance or on the assumption that a Rooney sale will go through.

Meaning? Everton’s not looking at usable dollars until next summer.

• Any Rooney deal could be a player swap that would mute a recuperation of fees by Everton. Any sale–and this was a bone of negotiation when Ronaldo moved, will likely, because of the high price of the fee, include negotiation on payment delivery and perhaps negotiation with Everton and/or a refactoring of that sell-on clause to make a deal work.

The Rooney contract situation is explained well here.

So just safe to say, Everton’s haul is this one is something, but it’s not guaranteed or clear what it is.

Now on how that impacts Everton and potential, again, for procuring the services of Landon Donovan who signaled his love for Everton again yesterday.

My original cents?

My comments yesterday were that this is money better spent elsewhere. It’s no question that having Landon as a counterattacking, width-creating forward conduit to the attack is precisely what Everton needs.

However, as I pointed out yesterday, MLS is likely looking at a premium of fair value and Landon is moving passed the peak of his career and, as we know, he’s not Brit Isles home grown player. The Toffees have a big part of the core of their team as upcoming prospects who make up their max list of non-HG players.

In fact, the Toffees non-HG stable of players may become a little bit of an issue going forward, as nearly 65% of them are at or beyond the peak of their careers and probably can commend pennies on the dollars that were used to bring them in.

So, for what likely is now–thanks Rafael Van Der Vaart–a transfer fee no greater than 10M (Van Der Vaart was $8M) in my opinion, the Toffees could buy a much younger winger or home grown player with similar value.

Beerens, at around $5M, represents a suitable Lando stand-in...

Players that present better options, business-wise, for the club are: Better off buying an Matt Etherington, Stoke City(Brit), Gervinho (a stretch?, 23-years-old plays for Lille), Vladimir Weiss (on loan from Man City to Rangers, 20-years-old) or Roy Beerens (Sportclub Heerenveen, Eredivisie, 22-year-old winger) to name a few.

Any of those players would likely cost have half of what Donovan does and do an acceptably similar job. Then there is another $5 – $10 surplus or another purchase.

Basically solely on the business principles, Donovan is a pass for the Toffees.

That said, for a team like Everton, who frankly could use more identity than just Tim Cahill and a little bit of Phil Neville and Leighton Baines, there is something to be said for bringing in a charismatic, attacking player who actually wants to be there.

Also, there is the potential to recoup Donovan’s investment via jersey sales. As a comparison, Thierry Henry has brought in almost $4M in revenues through about 50,000 jerseys sales. The breakdown of profit to MLS or EPL and their clubs I need to research.

Therefore, in my opinion, Donovan, even at his age and price, might represent a solid risk purchase for Everton though it’s hard to argue there aren’t better and simpler options.

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22 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 12:06 PM

    Inter is massacring Tottenham right now 3-0 as Gomes went off with a red (not entirely his fault).

    I point to this: http://theshinguardian.com/2010/05/03/tsgs-epl-squad-of-the-year/#comment-10663

    Reply

    • Posted by GeorgeCross on 2010/10/20 at 1:20 PM

      I agree, but the referee had little choice but to send Gomes off under the current laws of the game. This rule really needs to be looked at again, especially for keepers, because it spolis the game immeasurably. I feel a penalty is a sufficient punishment.

      Reply

  2. Posted by John on 2010/10/20 at 12:21 PM

    Let’s see Redknapp say more unsubstantiated stupidity against Rafa now.

    BTW

    Maurice Edu Scores!

    Reply

  3. Posted by dth on 2010/10/20 at 12:34 PM

    Now we see why Bradley wanted to shoehorn three holding midfielders into one starting lineup.

    Reply

  4. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 12:42 PM

    Just tweeted: Threesome: Edu now up there with Demps & Donovan for most clutch goals by American this year (CL today, Feb Celtic clash, Slovenia callback)

    It has to be incredulous now that Edu-Jones doesn’t get a run-out.

    Seriously….anywho…back to streams…

    Reply

  5. Posted by John on 2010/10/20 at 12:47 PM

    BTW: Can Ricardo Clark be called a holding midfielder these days? I mean, you have to keep the ball in order to be a holding midfielder.

    Also, Edu is pretty talented Center Half. Oh wait….

    Reply

  6. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 1:03 PM

    Mo Edu goal…brought to you by Ghetto Feed..(you may not be able to see it, but we’ve got it!)

    Reply

  7. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 1:12 PM

    Nani swervster score….nice….

    Reply

  8. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 1:13 PM

    Messi…taking the cake thus far:

    Reply

  9. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 1:16 PM

    Raul breaks European goal record….raise your hand if you thought he would do this…and raise your other hand if you said he would do this as part of a Bundesliga side…wow:

    Reply

  10. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 1:18 PM

    Zanetti opens Inter’s (currently) 4 goal account.

    Rafa making Rednapp…shut….up today…another wow:

    Reply

  11. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 1:26 PM

    More from our friends at Ghetto Feed….Jurado nails the coffin for Schalke over Tel Aviv today….

    Reply

  12. Posted by matthewsf on 2010/10/20 at 1:38 PM

    E’To slips through for the game winner as Inter goes Helter Skelter over Spurs 4-3

    90th min: Gareth Bale has nailed a trifecta, but his back will not be big enough today with Spurs down a man.

    Reply

  13. Posted by Nelson on 2010/10/20 at 6:38 PM

    Yo, why all the hating against Tottenham and Redknapp? The fact Bale scored a hat trick is admirable and an aspect key to Tottenham´s desire to play 90 minutes. Who else has gone down four nil to Inter a man down and marked three? I feel Gomez made a mistake in sliding feet first but still how could he anticipate that brilliant chip. Red seems harsh…Looking forward to the return game, Van de Vaart and Bale to dominate.

    Reply

  14. Posted by Soccernst on 2010/10/20 at 9:08 PM

    Wondo making a case to rewrite the mvp ballots tonight. Lights out down the stretch.

    Reply

  15. Posted by Bob on 2010/10/20 at 10:16 PM

    I think LD at some point really wanted to go back to Everton. For most of this year, his pic on twitter and facebook had him wearing his no. 9 toffee jersey (he changed both about a month or so ago). I really wonder about the jersey sale argument. How many did he sell the first time? Did U.S. fans buy the most? It is tough to keep following this development as we all know his window to move is closing very fast and we may be stuck having to watch him tear up MLS until he finally retires.

    Reply

  16. [...] Not so fast. If you haven’t seen it, check out our notes here. [...]

    Reply

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