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Americans Abroad

GOALKEEPERS
Brad Friedel 90 minutes in Aston Villa's 2-0 win at Blackburn
Tim Howard 90 in Everton's 3-0 win over Bolton
Brad Guzan did not play in Aston Villa's 2-0 win at Blackburn
Marcus Hahnemann (injury) not in the 18 in Reading's 0-0 tie with Preston
Luis Robles and Kaiserslautern at Nuremberg today
DEFENDERS
Carlos Bocanegra 90 in Rennes' 1-0 loss at Le Havre
Oguchi Onyewu 90 in Standard Liege's 2-0 win at Kortrijk
Jonathan Spector did not play in West Ham's 1-0 loss to Manchester United
Steve Cherundolo (injury) did not play in Hanover's 3-1 loss to Cottbus
Gregg Berhalter 30 in 1860 Munich's 2-2 tie at Mainz
Heath Pearce not in the 18 in Hansa Rostock's 3-3 tie at Aachen
Frank Simek not in the 18 for Sheffield Wednesday's 2-1 win at Sheffield United
MIDFIELDERS
Jose Torres 90 in Pachuca's 3-1 win at America
Michael Bradley 90 in Moenchengladbach's 1-1 tie with Hoffenheim
Clint Dempsey 89 in Fulham's 0-0 tie at Wigan
Danny Szetela did not play in Brescia's 0-0 tie with Bari
FORWARDS
Landon Donovan 18 minutes in Bayern Munich's 3-1 win over Dortmund
Jozy Altidore (traveling) not in the 18 for Xerez's 2-0 win over Albacete
Freddy Adu not in the 18 for Monaco's 1-1 tie at Lorient
Matt Taylor not in the 18 for Koblenz's 3-1 loss to Frankfurt
Eddie Johnson and Cardiff postponed at Charlton
Mike Grella and Leeds vs. Millwall today

By Steve Goff  |  February 9, 2009; 9:02 AM ET
Categories:  U.S. men's national team  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Roger, Over and Out
Next: Video: Pachuca and Barcelona

Comments

41 days until United's first game!

Posted by: Curious99 | February 9, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

I'm curious to get everyone's opinion. If you're a young US soccer player, which is the best option for you:

A) play in MLS
B) play on a top Euro squad but rarely make the roster (top 18) for games
C) play on a lesser Euro squad but get plenty of playing time

Posted by: Dougmacintyre | February 9, 2009 9:32 AM | Report abuse

With my current lack of knowledge of any foreign language beside latin and one semester of Italian I didn't exactly ace, I choose A. I spend my down time studying up, and if I was good enough to go right away, I'm good enough to go in a couple years.

Posted by: JacobfromAtlanta-ish | February 9, 2009 9:38 AM | Report abuse

@Dougmacintyre,

Tough question and it's all individual. Playing time is going to be available in MLS. However, MLS is still reluctant to pay top dollar for it's own players - which I'm sure is a big issue for the Union. Taylor Twellman - clearly could have gone abroad and gotten DP level money - he'll never get that in MLS. Will he not play as much abroad - yes.

The level of the squad, that's a tough one. If it's a scrappy side that's not fighting relegation but is pushing for access to Euro tournaments then maybe the additional focus and drive makes you better. Clearly anyone involved with clubs like Derby County last year is a worse player for it.

It's also relative on a league by league basis. Say your Bolton - you can stock a roster of 24-28 guys who in their prime would be high dollar players and never fit in under the MLS Cap. So guy #20 is probably darn near as good as guy #10 or #11 in some leagues and teams around the world and is on that roster because the team is willing to pay him to sit to avoid him from playing for someone else. In MLS, guy #20 is clearly not nearly as good as guy #14 who's not nearly as good as guy #8.

But for our young boys - if you have a chance - GO - take it. Now - deciding when you've done all you can over there is a tough question. Sometimes you like the life you found. Sometimes you can make a lot more money and longer there. Sometimes you HAVE to make more money longer because your post-sporting life is going to be a lot less money than you've been used to for the people who didn't go to college or even left school early, you've got an education to finish.

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | February 9, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

I'd go with C. More playing time against (usually) high quality opponents, more visibility to the top Euro teams, more $, experience a different culture, learn a new language (even if it's British English). If you choose C, then option A is still open.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | February 9, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

I would go with option C as well. Following a progression like Bradley has done is what I would want to do.

Go to a good mid-level league with a mid-level team. Make name for yourself and move to one of the top 4 leagues in the world. He's with a good club, they just need to win a few matches. I think they'll stay up.

I also have an infatuation with living in Europe for a few years...so take what I say with a grain of salt =/

Posted by: strago | February 9, 2009 9:46 AM | Report abuse

C. Because I have lived in Europe, and would love to do it again...so I'm biased too.

Posted by: Reignking | February 9, 2009 9:49 AM | Report abuse

VBB: It's a multiple choice, not essay question :-).

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | February 9, 2009 9:57 AM | Report abuse

VBB: It's a multiple choice, not essay question :-).

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | February 9, 2009 9:57 AM


This test consists of 3 questions...in 27 parts.

Posted by: mcontento | February 9, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

The closer to Amsterdam the better...

Posted by: DadRyan | February 9, 2009 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Easy one - C.

Why: (1) Playing in real competitive matches is the best way to improve and try and make a name for yourself. That rules out B. (2) Every young person should at least try living overseas once, and getting paid do so while playing a game you love is a pretty sweet way of doing that. Thus C trumps A.

Caveat: If you're only in it for the $$$, it may be that B is your best bet.

Posted by: edgeonyou | February 9, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

The closer to Amsterdam the better...
Posted by: DadRyan | February 9, 2009 10:17 AM
=========================

:-). But you should read about this Fred Hutch study using a Seattle cohort.

http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/02/09/health.pot.cancer/

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | February 9, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I saw the word "Amsterdam" and just knew it was DadRyan...

Posted by: Reignking | February 9, 2009 10:34 AM | Report abuse

'C' is clearly the preference of young Americans who think they can pull it off. In addition to the money and challenge - national team coaches have made it clear that players can make their way in to squads even when playing in smaller European countries. The only disadvantage is being on more intercontinental flights and the logistical hassle of living abroad (I've done it as well - and it is a hassle).

Posted by: Kev29 | February 9, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for everyone's input, even those answering in essay form!

Seriously, I was thinking C too, but that just leads to wondering what MLS can reasonably do to make A the best option. It seems like sometimes MLS is worrying about the top teams (see Beckham) when the main competition seems to be the lower tier Euro leagues as well as some of the Latin American leagues. What, if anything, should MLS do?

Posted by: Dougmacintyre | February 9, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Midfielders
Bobby Convey was apparently released by Reading. The writing was on the wall when Stephen Hunt didn't leave in the transfer window. Any idea as to his plans? Coming back to MLS? Trying to catch on someplace else?

Posted by: clb_in_md | February 9, 2009 11:11 AM | Report abuse

What, if anything, should MLS do?

Posted by: Dougmacintyre | February 9, 2009 10:57 AM

Keep raising young player wages

Any idea as to his plans? Coming back to MLS? Trying to catch on someplace else?

Posted by: clb_in_md | February 9, 2009 11:11 AM

Reading released him as a favor, allowing him to move on (fairly common practice in England). He'll be suiting up for San Jose this season - most likely.

Posted by: Kev29 | February 9, 2009 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Interesting link I-270, I'd blame it on miracle grow and pesticides that may be used in commercial cultivation in British Columbia, but what do I know?
I'm just glad I quit smoking cigarettes years ago... Those things will kill ya!

Posted by: DadRyan | February 9, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

C -- playing time is all important. Living in Europe is a great experience, and MLS will always be there if you choose to come home.

But you should define "young." In Europe, college grads aren't considered young. They're late starters and suspect. I think it is a mistake for high schoolers to head off to Europe - college is still the best option for the majority.

Posted by: oz4dcu | February 9, 2009 12:03 PM | Report abuse

"C" all day long. Preferably Denmark or Sweden largely for the cultural experience and the scouting if not the $$$ also. I don't see anything MLS can do other than raise the criminally-low salaries for young players. However, there will still be guys who want to get the cultural experience and the scouting.

Posted by: mason16 | February 9, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

you know there's Zak Whitbread on Millwall right?

Posted by: sakibomb523 | February 9, 2009 5:37 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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