Archive for the ‘Americans Abroad’ Category

Video: US Soccer Updates On Stu Holden

Oh man, CPM machine, that brings me back.

The US Soccer video crew needs to drop the background drama-music though.

Still would like specifics on the injury.

Monday Quarterbacking

You still on that jellybean high? Fantastic weekend for soccer, if you could squeeze it in:

Target audience: Appropriate Herbalife sponsorship with Portland in town....

• The Los Angeles Galaxy went out of this world with their 3-0 thrashing of the visiting….”TIIIIMMMMBERs!”

While the Galaxy’s form will be hailed, I’m not sold on their squad just yet. Chad Barrett played above himself and P-Town’s midfield seemed to be sleeping on the job (in reality they were just, collectively, a step slow).

Press the Galaxy’s midfield. Give Beckham, Juninho and Donovan less time on the ball and to make passes. I’m curious then if there forwards will loose themselves and give their midfield counterparts streaking runs or interplay up top.

Not sold, but we shall see.

A few other nuggets in this one:

» AJ De La Garza filling in for the injured Leonardo looked dynamite. I shall call him Mini Cannavaro. For now. Hope he lives up to the junior nickname.

» Interesting post-game commentary from Landon Donovan where he lightly admonished, “Have people figured out I’m not a goal scorer [more a passer] anymore?” Was known for a while, but sure make Bruce Arena’s commentary that Donovan might be play as a second striker prior to the season a little hollow. That’s Arena for you though.

» Darlington Nagbe. Take solace Portland. Kid will be a player.

• MB90 minus 90: I’m afraid it’s time for all those that glommed on to the statement, “Michael Bradley has earned playing time everywhere he’s went” to throw an asterisk on that statement.

Villa skipper Gerard Houllier was admitted for emergency surgery earlier in his coaching career at Liverpool and now he’s back in the hospital as of last week. That likely means a “don’t rock the boat” squad with assistant manager Gary McAllister in charge.

Late to the "party" at Villa Park...

You may see Bradley sneak in the 18 one or two times and even the eleven once, but you can consider–for whatever reason–Bradley’s time at Villa to be a failure for his exposure.

Once again, Junior Bradley was nowhere to be seen as Aston Villa drew Stoke City 1-1 on Saturday. Manning the midfield hub was 31-year-0ld Stiliyan Petrov and Nigel Reo-Coker. On the bench for the Houllier’s was Jean Makoun…and 37-year-old Robert Pires.

Has Bradley’s ability or career plateaued or is this just a speed bump. I still maintain that the Bradley to Sunderland nonsense (only heard here in the States) was just a story plant for buzz. Whither Bradley post-campaign? Back to Bo’Munchen, but will it be in Bundesliga II?

• Spec-ulating: Speaking of the Yanks’ midfield, a healthy performance from Jonathan Spector though West Ham got the knife from Chelsea. Spector’s midfield movement (on the account of him being a former striker I’d imagine) is excellent, but he’s still not a run with the ball or final pass sort of guy. With Bob Bradley seemingly now chock full of righbacks (Cherundolo, Chandler, Lichaj) will Spector be used in the midfield?

• Arsenal fan? Always turn your set of at 80 mins: Tough weekend for Arsenal fans as Tamir Cohen banged home a header to give Bolton a 2-1 victory over the would-be title seekers. At some point, if you’re not going to make the right purchases, you have to at least ask your manager how he’s going to solve those late game mental mistakes.

And Danny Sturridge for Bolton, once again proficient.

David Vaughan for Blackpool; Jermaine Jones thinks about the yellow for Blackburn...

• The Yellow Card Bowl: Who gets the first today as Jermaine Jones and Blackburn face off against Nigel DeJong and Manchester City.

• Get out of the kitchen! http://hastorresscoredforchelsea.com/

• The story for ‘Pool: Liverpool, creeping up the table. The story for Pool? Not Maxi Rodriguez’s three-spot, not that Joe Cole actually still exists. How about that John Flanagan kid at rightback? He’s 18!

• The other ‘Pool: After a stirring first half of the campaign, Blackpool find themselves in the thick of relegation fisticuffs. How about this? The player’s voted their player of the year this past week. Charlie Adam, of course, right? Nope. Seems threats and commentary about wanting to leave the club midseason didn’t sit well in their dressing room. The Tangerines Proper went with the other middie David Vaughan.

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MLS Player Of The Week: Lyle Yorks

Update: According to this MLSSoccer.com report, the Feilhaber move came about in 72 hours. Wow. And, combine that with today’s learnings that Feilhaber’s salary this year is a single digit percentage premium ($375,000 to $374,000)  to his Aarhus salary and just a small raise (and only one added year) to $450,000 next year tells me the following:

Aarhus–likely–wasn’t re-upping at the same or comparable rate next year and no suitor was coming forward in the summer with a better deal.

Again, sure Feilhaber maybe wanted to play Stateside–I’m not sure I believe that since the exposure to European clubs diminishes–it still looks like MLS was negotiating against itself.

Once again, well done Mr. Yorks.

——

Give it up for Lyle Yorks as Benny Feilhaber should be doing right now.

Player Of The Week

Here’s what we know of the recent Americans abroad.

That Benny Feilhaber was out of contract at the end of this year.

That his team AGF Aarhus tried–multiple GM reports–to move him during the initial part of this season.

Being a World Cup veteran does not guarantee you a spot in Europe. Jay DeMerit elected to play out his final year at Watford in hopes that he could parlay his World Cup appearance into another enviable contract somewhere in Europe. Didn’t happen.

Edson Buddle took his World Cup resume and is now a part-time starter in Germany….for a Bundesliga II outfit trying desperately to avoid relegation to the third division.

World Cup occasional starter Jonathan Bornstein, now an occasional starter with Tigres in the Primera, likewise for World Cup roster cut Sacha Kljestan in Belgium with Anderlecht though his playing time is spotty.

Jozy Altidore? Seeking playing time after a somewhat impressive World Cup has found himself with a lateral move at best to the Turkish Superliga.

Benny...is back!

So that leads us to Benny Feilhaber.

US nationals are infinitely more marketable on the home shore and with Feilhaber out of contract at the end of the season, his agent, Yorks, did a smart thing by proactively moving Benny to MLS. Maybe it was Benny’s decision, who knows. One thing I do know is the I’m sure Yorks witnessed the DeMerit situation and thought, “I’m not losing the leverage for my player in the summer.”

Smart move. Could an MLS club had Benny for less in a few months? That would seem possible.

Moving about Europe is still a chore for an American player and one who is represented by an American agent. Don’t get me wrong, as far as I know, Yorks is one of the best in the business, but remember “Americans Abroad” in Europe–in abundance–is somewhat new as are the agent ties to various teams. Yorks’ agency has been around for ten years. By comparison, controversial player agent Paul Stretford (agent to Wayne Rooney) has been brokering players since 1987.

They, Americans abroad, represent an opportunity for teams (American fan dollars and media exposure), but there are also the limitations of homegrown rules and passports and there is the back-scratching for Euro agents that control even bigger players; agents that are more entrenched.

Feilhaber will do well in MLS. He’s a US national, a talented offender and a good looking guy to have on a campaign poster to boot. And it’s in MLS where that first quality–being a US national–holds the most value.

MLS: Benny Feilhaber To Revs For Now

Feilhaber headed your way....

And the eagle has landed for now…

Or the Feilhaber rather.

US national and World Cup veteran Benny Feilhaber is headed to the New England Revolution for now. A good move by the Revs–and one that Chivas should have considered–in getting value. The Revs elected to gain an asset and perhaps bring some other assets in if Feilhaber’s not the fit.

According to Steve Davis, Feilhaber’s cap number will be an astounding $400K. Good work by the agent on that one considering that Feilhaber would have less suitors in the summer (and less leverage) out of contract.

A deal to Houston–who according to ESPN reporter Jeff Carlisle and this Houston Chronicle article was pushing both Chivas and New England for–may still materialize.

Timmy Chandler’s Weekend Dime

(Thanks for the note on this in the comment’s section)

Just a peek at Timothy Chandler’s assist on the weekend for Nurnberg as they dropped Kaiserslautern and remained 6th in the table.

We need a TSG nickname for Chandler.

Benny Feilhaber To MLS; Chivas Likely

From Hamburg to Aarhus...going back to Cali?

Feilhaber Update: TSG was out of pocket yesterday, but according to agent to the stars Lyle Yorks’ twitter, US national Benny Feilhaber is headed to MLS.

No word on which team yet, but Chivas has first allocation pick and Feilhaber is from near Irvine, CA. A second tweet by Yorks’ seemed to allude to it.

Interesting move for Feilhaber who is out of contract at the end of the campaign.

He certainly didn’t help his self-promotion by moving with Aarhus to the second division in Denmark upon their demotion. After a rumored move to Mexico’s Primera never materialized, little doubt–much like Jay DeMerit–that finding a deal out of contract to a better league would materialize it seems.

As for the Chivas match for Feilhaber? The Goats are lacking in the attack but Robin Fraser is a steadfast defensive organizer and Feilhaber is not quite Makelele. More to come for sure.

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