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Morning Briefing

While you chew on the DCU stadium news in the previous posting, let's catch up on a few things.....

*Remember the other day when we told you that Pat Noonan's reps were selling him hard to Scandinavian clubs? Well, Soccer America reports today that the out-of-contract Revs forward is headed to Aalesund in Norway.

*As we told you at the draft last weekend, Colorado continues to shop veteran defender-midfielder Pablo Mastroeni around the league. One MLS team official, only half jokingly, said the Rapids have contacted each of the other 13 clubs and perhaps Seattle as well.

*Danish club Aarhus has granted Jeremiah White permission to continue training with the U.S. national team in the buildup to the Mexico friendly. No guarantee he will be on the game-day roster, but at the very least, Bob Bradley will have another week-plus to look at him.

*Scotland is closing in on a new manager.

*Charter flights for all MLS teams, not just Becks and the Galaxy?

*On the United front, while we await a conclusion to the Christian Gomez saga and whether the club will sign Marcelo Gallardo or another Latin American playmaker as his replacement, here is the print-edition story on Franco Niell, other DCU player interests and the El Salvador qualifier at RFK. Also, for your information, former United forward Mira Mupier is on trial with Koge BK in Denmark's top division.

Today's video: Egypt 4, Cameroon 2. I love the second goal -- rapid counterattack, clean finish, great celebration. The third goal is a beauty, too. Enjoy!


By Steve Goff  |  January 23, 2008; 8:55 AM ET
Categories:  Misc.  
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Next: MLS Updates [new stuff added]

Comments

Ouch. Rough day for Cameroon's goalkeeper. I wish FSC and/or Gol TV were carrying the African Nations Cup, it looks like there've been a lot of compelling games.

Posted by: noptov52 | January 23, 2008 9:27 AM | Report abuse

Dudes, I hope nobody ever jumps up on me like that should I ever be fortunate enough to score a goal. That was disturbing.

Gotta say, Egypt has some pace up front.

Posted by: Joe Doc | January 23, 2008 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Anyone else thinking the Revs are looking pretty awful going into the season?

Posted by: Hoost | January 23, 2008 9:36 AM | Report abuse

What a travesty that the ANC is not on TV here!!!

Posted by: Timoteo | January 23, 2008 9:42 AM | Report abuse

FYI, but Noonan's now the third member of the New England Revolution to join Aalesund. Paulos Dos Santos played for the club for some time before being transfered to Haugesund a few season back, while Adin Brown is one of the top goalkeepers in the League and arguably the most popular player with their supporters.

Posted by: Evan | January 23, 2008 9:45 AM | Report abuse

You had to see this coming for the Revolution. While the team they had assembled was good, players were going to want more money for their consistency in reaching MLS Cup and also management, not willing to change the manager, were obviously going to take things in a different direction player wise.

That said - still sorta baffles me that they would allow guys like Noonan to leave for free. You'd think they'd want to line their pockets if they were going to have a fire sale unloading teams from those runs.

Posted by: UVA-United | January 23, 2008 9:51 AM | Report abuse

on comcast in DC they have been showing the games live on channel 194 - it does not list the games as being shown on the schedule, but they are showing them. atleast the big ones. ghana, morocco, cote d'ivoire-nigeria, and egypt cameroon games have all been shown. i would say it is safe to assume the tunisia game will be on today as well

Posted by: CAN on tv | January 23, 2008 9:57 AM | Report abuse

What a travesty that the ANC is not on TV here!!!

Posted by: Timoteo | January 23, 2008 09:42 AM
======================

Some of the matches are broadcast on the MHz networks. MHz4 (914 on FiOS) showed the Morocco-Namibia match. The schedule simply states 12:00 AM-Nigerian Television Authority. So there's not telling which match is on (if any).

Here's how to find MHz in your area:
http://www.mhznetworks.org/images/stories/howtoreceive.pdf

Posted by: I-270, Exit 1 | January 23, 2008 10:00 AM | Report abuse

Love that goal celebration -- "Ow, this boot is too hot, ow, ow!"

Posted by: Jay | January 23, 2008 10:06 AM | Report abuse

Does Cameroon not have a keeper who can stay on his line? There were holes in the defense and some of the shots were superb, but he could have made it a lot closer if he was positioned well...

Posted by: CavFan | January 23, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

I don't mean to dis our players, but why are the Scandinavian leagues so hot on Americans?

Posted by: Sharp | January 23, 2008 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Aalesund'S field is on top of a mountain. A friend's wedding was on a nearby island a few years back and he pointed up this big, gigantic rock as we drive by and said Aalesund's field was up there. I remember thinking, who's gotta go get the ball when they overshoot the goal!

It's a really lovely area. Hope he doesn't mind being far away from anything resembling a city.

Posted by: Kire | January 23, 2008 10:26 AM | Report abuse

Scandanavian/Surrounding Area Leagues seem to have money they make by taking the bets that MLS does on its players and hopefully selling a few on for much greater than they paid for them. I'm sure that helps in their operating expenses as well as their talent searches. It could also be due to the fact that work permits are easier to obtain there than they are in leagues that are more prestigious and the evidence needed to justify a foreign addition to a roster is higher.

MLS needs more dollars for the core of their teams. As expansion stretches the players over here to new exteremes in terms of maintaining the product on the field, the players are going to be taxed to new levels due to the increased international obligations/opportunities presented to the top tier clubs.

I'm telling you, the CBA will be ugly for the bottom half of the roster as an expansion of the salary cap will be sought after to give guys here a reason to stay. MLS is being very tight lipped, and rightfully so, about its finances at present, but each guy that leaves for a smaller EU league right now is one that is lining up the MLSPA's case in negotiations for 2009 and beyond.

Posted by: UVA-United | January 23, 2008 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Charter flights... but for only 4 legs of a trip, for the entire season?

Why-oh-why does MLS still make these minor league rules?

Posted by: kahlva | January 23, 2008 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the tip I-270, it turns out that I get the MHz channels, they're just buried deep in digital cable no-man's land.

Posted by: noptov52 | January 23, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

Kahlva,

Baby Steps.

At least they are going to be able to do it a few times this year. I'm sure teams will do it around the busiest parts of the fixture list.

Posted by: UVA-United | January 23, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

So Noonan goes for free. They won't sell Twellman. They hold up Joseph. They manage to play well enough to get to big games but "the Revs reached -- and lost -- their third straight MLS Cup" said the Soccer America article.
I think the Revs are due for a downturn. The emotion will not be there. These guys may just be done. And that crap keeper of theirs looked done last year. Here's hoping Reis continues his slide and the Revs go right with him.

Posted by: marksman | January 23, 2008 11:08 AM | Report abuse

Zidan is one who scored the second goal and he plays for Hamburg.

Posted by: td | January 23, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

I love the face that the Egyptian Keeper makes after Eto's PK. Priceless.

Ives is saying that DC would be a popular choice for Mastroeni. Why we have the great Clyde.

Posted by: Matt | January 23, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

While the Charter Flights are a step in the right direction, i don't understand why MLS is keeping NY from enjoying the benefits of a big name sponsor.

I mean, the reason they aren't letting NY charter all their flights is because teams like San Jose probably can't afford to charter all their flights. Thats the beauty of sponsors... helping take care of the costs.

This 4 leg thing is a bit silly... they should have at least made it 4 round trips.

Posted by: Stephen | January 23, 2008 11:35 AM | Report abuse

If, if the Gallardo rumors are true, and that is a huuuuuuuuuuuge if, then I suspect we'd trade Christian's rights away to colorado, though I would see us going for Terry Cooke before we went for blated budget Mastroeni, unless we intended to trade him right away to san josie for a young winger or something.

There is nothing substantive to this, just my musings, so I would rate this a 5 (sure thing) on the MLSRumors site, then. :-)

Posted by: DCAustinite | January 23, 2008 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Re: Mastroeni, he's certainly a very good player. At the same time, there's a bunch of really good young guys playing that position, including our own Clyde Simms (and Ben Olsen). Unless we get him on the cheap, I'd pass.

Re: DCU signings, I'm definitely in a "wait-and-see" mode.

Re: Noonan, it's a shame that another good MLS player is leaving. I don't know how the league will field 16 decent teams in 2010.

Posted by: jj | January 23, 2008 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Nice goals by the Egyptian Zidane.

Say... anyone have video clips of Gallardo?
Thanks.

Posted by: David | January 23, 2008 11:43 AM | Report abuse

NYRB doesn't have a big name sponsor? Red Bull is it's own big-name sponsor. They put their own product logo on the shirt. It's not extra cash, to be sure. On the other hand, it's the entire reason they own the team.

Posted by: FIsch Fry | January 23, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

Nice goals by the Egyptian Zidane.

Say... anyone have video clips of Gallardo?
Thanks.

Posted by: David | January 23, 2008 11:43 AM
_____________________________________

Here you go, i posted this earlier, but here it is again. This is a highlight of when he was in france playing for monaco, he won player of the year i believe in 2000 for that league.

And on the African Cup of Nations... that egyptian guy Mohammad Zidan is SICK! He is a incredible striker! World class IMO.

Posted by: Bolivian DC Fan | January 23, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Whoops. Forgot to post the clip. LOL

Here's the first one, when at monaco.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ru_zHgAdZsI

Here's another of when he was just at river.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xwrw7k9631g

Posted by: Bolivian DC Fan | January 23, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse

"NYRB doesn't have a big name sponsor? Red Bull is it's own big-name sponsor. They put their own product logo on the shirt. It's not extra cash, to be sure. On the other hand, it's the entire reason they own the team."

Absolutely right, and as ridiculous and undignified it is to be named after an energy drink, Red Bull is responsible for spending an enormous amount of money on the infrastructure and programs that can provide the framework for success:

1. While Nick Sakiewicz and AEG worked out the deal for the stadium project, it was only when Red Bull came aboard that the financing issues with Hudson County were resolved, and when RB bought out AEG, the team entirely controlled a beautiful soccer stadium in a central location easily accessible by public transportation from NYC and New Jersey. It's under construction now, but it would never have happened without Red Bull.

2. Construction of their own all-season 23 acre training facility in Hanover, on track for completion by the end of this year, which will indisputably be the best such facility in MLS.

3. Full funding of a no-fee youth academy at Hanover, pending NCAA regulations to include a dormitory.

Setting everything else aside, it's an unprecedented level of investment made in an MLS team. The Red Bull purchase IS a sponsorship deal, one that dwarfs Best Buy, Herbalife, etc.

Posted by: Mastodon Juan | January 23, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

hi Steve
can you confirm the recent signing by the LA Galaxy of nigerian defender Celestine Babayaro. i believe he was released by newcastle a month ago.

thanks

Posted by: Tutu Akins | January 23, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

Y'all are missing the point. NYRB has a big name sponsor, but MLS does not allow the team to enjoy the benefits that Red Bull can provide, e.g. charter flights. Read carefully before embarking on a one-way trip on Air Tangent.

Posted by: I-270, Exit 1 | January 23, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Judging from Euro media reports, looks like Babayaro is going to LA. Waiting for official announcement.

Posted by: Goff | January 23, 2008 12:15 PM | Report abuse

the poplar point stadium proposal is/was beautiful. i am wondering if there have been any plans or drawings for any of the possible stadium locations outside of dc. i would hate to see a bad stadium built to accomodate other events.

Posted by: PKTaker | January 23, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, I remember last year MLS headquarters said no the Red Bulls plans to charter flights for their team (due to unfair advantage- whatever) and than after the Becks circus arrived oking charters for LA. The four legs restriction is ridiculous. Also, if DC wanted to use a charter to get to say, Harbour View or Mexico (or in my dreams Tokyo) would that count against the rule?

Posted by: bluemeanies | January 23, 2008 12:21 PM | Report abuse

I am thanking God everyday that Dan Snyder doesn't own United!!!

Posted by: Gooner | January 23, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Goff,

Any news on the Arguez transfer? Did it die or just stall?

Posted by: gilbert | January 23, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Any update on EJ's appeal against the Home Office for the work permit? It should have taken place already today. Thanks.

Posted by: Faraway_Fred | January 23, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Johnny | January 23, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for that EJ update. He and Cousin are exactly the same type of players so don't know what versatility Hodgson is gaining by signing identical players (out-and-out strikers).

Posted by: Faraway_Fred | January 23, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, Bolivian DC Fan. Looks like Gallardo does what Christian Gomez does, only in more-competitive leagues. If the choice is between Gomez or Gallardo, I'd be somewhat torn. I like the dynamic Gomez has got going with Moreno, Emilio and Fred. Plus I'll never forget the loyalty he showed when he was serving a suspension and joined the fans in the stands. Either way, it's like choosing between Argentine merlot or cabernet -- you really can't go wrong.

... not that I'm even pretending this is close to a done deal, or anything.

Posted by: David | January 23, 2008 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Wow, did the left back for Cameroon get paid to the let the 4th goal happen? Watch him. That's just bad play.

Posted by: Oops! | January 23, 2008 1:24 PM | Report abuse

2. Construction of their own all-season 23 acre training facility in Hanover, on track for completion by the end of this year, which will indisputably be the best such facility in MLS.

Posted by: Mastodon Juan | January 23, 2008 12:03 PM

Not if the Red Bulls play there. You can live in a palace, but still be trash.

Posted by: You can live in a palace, but still be trash | January 23, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

Posted by: David | January 23, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse

yep, you can't take the most ghetto city in the US (DC) & make it someplace desirable.

High Crime
George Bush
Ben Olsen
High concentartion of gay soccer fans

You've got it all, DC!

Posted by: Smith | January 23, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

SMith wouldnt that be NEW york?

Posted by: FANATICO | January 23, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Smith,
You forgot to mention our 11 major domestic and international championships. Yes, we really do have it all.

Posted by: DC | January 23, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse

the poplar point stadium proposal is/was beautiful. i am wondering if there have been any plans or drawings for any of the possible stadium locations outside of dc
------------------------------------------
The request for proposals to examine the economics of a DC United stadium in PG County had a ground-level cut-away rendering.

It was so small and dim on the PDF that it didn't really convey much, and really isn't worth looking for.

But, if you must, Google is your friend...or back pages of the BigSoccer DC United stadium thread.

Posted by: seahawkdad | January 23, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Completely off topic, but... on my Internet radio station I just heard Zebra's "Who's Behind the Door."

That's just awesome.

All I need now is to hear Ratt's "Round and Round" and my day is golden.

Posted by: Joe Doc | January 23, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

. Construction of their own all-season 23 acre training facility in Hanover, on track for completion by the end of this year, which will indisputably be the best such facility in MLS.

Posted by: Mastodon Juan


You've obviously never been to the auxiliary fields at RFK. First class to say the least.

Posted by: marksman | January 23, 2008 2:20 PM | Report abuse

To David:

a minor correction. Gallardo is a Malbeck, not a Merlot. A common mistake, but the varietals are slightly different.

Posted by: DCAustinite | January 23, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

I hate to say it, but the Auxiliary fields at RFK, while nice, are not going to be as nice as the newly constructed ones in Hanover. Not with the training grounds and locker rooms right there, and a new pitch. Oh yeah, and without Soehn having to chase off coke heads like he's had to in the past.

And I'm a DC United fan and someone who's played and goes to those fields often. They're nice, but they could be nicer.

Posted by: Auxiliary Fields? | January 23, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Noonan's departure will change the dynamics of the Revolution, but will benefit them both. Look to Thompson stepping up with chemistry and goals.

Charter planes are essential. The mechanics of such limited flights will prove costly.

Sam

Posted by: Sam | January 23, 2008 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Is it true your team is changing its name to either (1) Ghetto United or (2) DC Team of the 90's?


Re: "SMith wouldnt that be NEW york?" -

Good God - Don't any of you ghetto dwellers know how to spell, properly capitalize or use proper grammar? No wonder our country is going to the dogs. The residents of the capital are all illiterate.

Maybe "Illiterates United" would be a better name for the fan base as opposed to your current "Screaming Weasles" & "Yogi Bear a Bear a"

Posted by: Smith | January 23, 2008 3:48 PM | Report abuse

I think the Revs will still be alright, but at this point they look like an also-ran playoff team. If they stay with the 3412 formation, they have no proven depth at any of the 3 defensive spots (and Avery John is also out of contract), will continue to start either Wells Thompson (distinctly average) or Khano Smith (unreliable at best) at left midfield, and will be stuck with a much less potent front line in Cristman and Twellman (who are a bit too similar). Albright coming in at right midfield will be a boost, but not enough to offset what they've lost.

Posted by: Chest Rockwell | January 23, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Smith, you have an uhealthy fixation on "ghettos." Seek help.

Then, try this:

Red Bull New York: Team of June 2003

Posted by: Joe Doc | January 23, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Good God - Don't any of you ghetto dwellers know how to spell, properly capitalize or use proper grammar?

Posted by: Smith | January 23, 2008 03:48 PM
===============================

yep, you can't take the most ghetto city in the US (DC) & make it someplace desirable.

High concentartion of gay soccer fans

Posted by: Smith | January 23, 2008 01:47 PM

Posted by: I-270, Exit 1 | January 23, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

"I don't mean to dis our players, but why are the Scandinavian leagues so hot on Americans?

Posted by: Sharp | January 23, 2008 10:25 AM"
MLS players are cheap, professional and about the same quality as they are going to get domestically. Its the same reason latin americans are exploring MLS now. More money for roughly and equal competition.
Assuming the cap is tripled (at least) as many reports say the target is; I'd expect to see less of that happening because the lure of Champions League isn't exactly a big selling point of the Scandanavian leagues as very few qualify and even fewer actually do anything beyond getting slaughtered in qualifying.

Smith: congrats on lowering the discourse in here to a sub-5th grade level.

Posted by: papa bear | January 23, 2008 7:59 PM | Report abuse

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