Saturday, January 20, 2007

Saints Beat QPR

Tough loss for QPR at home today. As a Saints fan, it's good to see them get all 3 points. They've missed some chances lately to do that in games. But I thought QPR's disallowed goal to tie things up was baffling to say the least. I don't know why it was disallowed. But Saints came out with a 2-0. For a bit on QPR's reaction on the match, check out the QPR Report. As you can see, Queen Park Ranger's gaffer John Gregory thought they were robbed of that goal. I can't blame him.

Celtic - July 19th Denver, Colorado, USA : MLS All-Star Game

I want to clarify things about the all-star announcement I mentioned yesterday. It was the Rapids VP Jeff Plush that stated that the deal with Celtic FC was all but done. They'll be playing at brand new Dick's Sporting Goods Park on July 19th, 2007 against the MLS All-Stars. Watch for the official announcement during the next couple of weeks. If you want to see them, plan a week since there are so many great things do while in Colorado. There are quirky mountain towns like Leadville, the New Belguim brewery in Ft. Collins, the new Denver Art Museum, and other things. As the opening of the April 7th new stadium approaches I'll post more information on things to do in the area.

2007 MLS Supplemental Draft

Just a quick summary of the supplemental draft here. Most of these guys won't even make the squad but watch for some pleasant surprises. Last year produced a few such as Dan Wasson (Rapids) and Vaughn (Chivas USA). And, if my memory serves me correctly Dasan Robinson (Chicago Fire) was a supp pick last year. Not only was he a great surprise but was in the running rookie of the year and was called in the US Mens National camp in the lead up to today's friendly in LA against Denmark. Link to List at


Chicago Fire (5): GK Nick Noble (West Virginia Univ.), M Mark Totten (James Madison University), D Osei Telesford (Liberty University), F Asmir Pervan (Saint Leo University), D Daniel Woolard (Midwestern State University)

Chivas USA (5): D Desmond Brooks (Saint Mary's College), M Erasmo Solorzano (Univ. of California-Riverside), M Raul Batista (San Diego State University), F Anthony Hamilton (Univ. of California-Irvine), F Lyle Martin (Cal. State University at Bakersfield)

Colorado Rapids (3): M John DiRaimondo (St. Louis University), M Kosuke Kimura (Western Illinois University), F Riley O'Neill (University of Kentucky)

Columbus Crew (4): D Ryan Junge (Creighton University), M Tonci Skroce (Univ. of Illinois -Chicago), M Ted Niziolek (Seton Hall), M Kevin Burns (Univ. of Connecticut)

D.C. United (2): GK Shawn Crowe (Florida International Univ.), F Guy Kpene (Dowling College)

FC Dallas (2): M Sandi Gbandi (Univ. of Alabama at Birmingham), M Chase Wileman (Southern Methodist Univ.)

Houston Dynamo (3): M Nick Hatzke (Univ. of California-Berkeley), F Erik Ustruck (Santa Clara Univ.), D Justin Douglass (Missouri State University)

Kansas City Wizards (7): D Aaron Hohlbein (Univ. of Wisconsin), F Michael Todd (Hofstra University), GK Chris Konopka (Providence College), M Eric Frimpong (Univ. of California-Santa Barbara), M AJ Godbolt (Univ. of Maryland), M/F Michael Kraus (Creighton University), F Willy Guadarrama (Campbell University)

Los Angeles Galaxy (6): D Steve Purdy (University of California), D Gordan Kljestan (Seton Hall), D Kevin Long (University of San Francisco), D Zach Kirby (Boston University), M Taylor Canel (Cal. State University-Northridge), D Kiel McClung (UCLA)

New England Revolution (3): GK Phil Marfuggi (Clemson University), D Gary Flood (Hofstra University), F Chris Loftus (Duke University)

New York Red Bulls (3): F Randi Patterson (Univ. of North Carolina-Greensboro), M Sal Cacavale (American University), GK Danny Cepero (Univ. of Pennsylvania)

Real Salt Lake (4): D Haddon Kirk (North Carolina State Univ.), M Jared Kent (Old Dominion Univ.), GK Kyle Reynish (Univ. of California-Santa Barbara), D Dustin Kirby (Ohio State University)

Toronto FC (4): F Jarrod Smith (West Virginia University), F Daryl Roberts (Liberty University), F Hunter West (University of South Florida), M Tyler Hemming (Hartwick College)

Friday, January 19, 2007

Good La Liga Blogs?

One of the things I've been frustrated by is finding some good blogs that track La Liga. If you know of any, please share. It's a great league and deserves more attention than what it gets in the US.

Celtic In Denver In July, Rapids Coy Over Casey

The Colorado Rapids assistant coach John Murphy was coy over Conor Casey at last night's supporters event. He was very clear the Rapids wanted him. The problem is so do other teams and the Rapids aren't at the top. The Rapids don't have any allocations to use to bring him in but other teams do. Casey can end up with the Rapids if he really wants to return home to play. The question will be what the Rapids would have to give up for him. I wouldn't be surprised to see the Rapids trading Aitor Karanka to get the allocation they would need for Casey. And the team with the most allocations and the greatest need to improve their defense is....... Real Salt Lake. The other big news was that the Rapids confirmed that everything was in place for Celtic to be playing at the All-Star game in July. That's right, it's more or less a done deal. Watch for the MLS and the Rapids to be announcing this in the next few weeks.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

McBride's On Fire, Eddie Lewis On The Move?

Since the new MLS Designated Player Rule (aka The Beckham rule) was put in place, most any American playing Europe has been linked with a move back to Major League Soccer. This has been especially true for those 30+. For most of these rumors, there has been little reason to talk about them other than it's gossip. For example, Brian McBride might be at the end of his career but he's also playing as well as he ever has. He's nabbed 9 goals for Fulham this year. More so the Fulham fans love him. He may be from Chicago but history is full of players who never return "home" to close out their career. Eddie Lewis is another Yank that's over 30 and seems to have been linked with various moves back to the MLS simply because of this, especially since the DP rule was implemented. Nothing too concrete going on to make me believe he's looking to move on. But what caught my eye today was Leeds bringing in Alan Thompson. Surely Leeds is looking for some fresh blood for their relegation fight and Thompson isn't exactly it. But he does bring a lot of experience to the left side of the field. Could this be the first sign that Leeds will be willing to part with Eddie Lewis? And if so, will he be off to the MLS or will Wolves lodge a new bid (they had bid this summer) for Eddie Lewis as part of their push to make the playoffs?

Conor Casey To Colorado Rapids

MLS Underground is reporting that the Colorado Rapids are in advanced talks to bring Conor Casey, who grew up in Colorado, back home. The current stumbling block seems to be the MLS' odd player rules. The league and not the clubs hold player registrations and contracts. And with their rules, there is no guarantee that Casey would end up with the Rapids unless the player, the league's front office and Rapids can reach an agreement in advance. I will post on update on this situation tomorrow.

Fulham's Drama, Deuce's Video

Who Ate All The Pies takes a look at Fulham and asks the question if boring old Fulham isn't the most exciting team in the premiership this year. They also have the rap video their newest buy Clint "Deuce" Dempsey did.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Beckham Fallout, Fan Perception

This comment has me wondering how positive the Beckham move will be for Major League Soccer. It definitely has got the league attention in both the US and around the world. But I'm not sure how much it's perceived people's perception of the league, especially overseas, when it spawns thoughts like this :

I can see him off to NY: Beckham, Ronaldo and Deisler. It's all in the MLS' master plan!
And for those of you who didn't know, 27 year old Sebastian Deisler has announced his retirement from Bayern Munich. He's had some injury problems but more so he's been battling severe depression for years. I hope things get for him.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

New Southampton Blog

If you're looking for news on Southampton FC, check out this new blog.

The Scoop On Gareth Bale

I've been covering Gareth Bale a bit recently. First he caught my eye due to his play. More recently he keeps popping up being linked with a move to a big club like Manchester United or Chelsea. But in looking into those, I found plenty of evidence such as this where Bale, his agent or Saints officials were quoted being specific about their lack of desire to leave Southampton. On the other hand, I couldn't find anything by Mourinho, Wenger, Sir Alex or others saying not only that they're interested Bale but that they're working on buying him during the winter transfer window. Previous posts

Real Salt Lake Stadium Frustrations

You may have not heard about it with all the chatter about Freddy Adu, the draft, David Beckham, David Beckham, David Beckham and FCD's talks to sign Edgar Davids but the stadium situation for Real Salt Lake is not going well. The state of the mood of many RSL fans is likely on the same level as Are You Loyal?. A very brief summary of the current situation goes like this. The team has a limited amount of time to play at it's current home, Rice-Eccles stadium at the University of Utah. The situation for building a new stadium seemed so-so with no clear sites in Salt Lake City proper panning out. Sandy, a city of @100,000 that's a southern suburb of SLC. The state legislature passed a law allowing counties to use a relatively benign hotel tax to finance projects like the prosed RSL SSS. The initial vote by the Salt Lake County board (SLC is in Salt Lake County but so is Sandy, Murray and some other cities) didn't pass including a lack of support by the county mayor Peter Corroon who is a RSL season ticket holder. There was a revised proposal which was thought would pass once the November elections passed. But it hasn't and it's not looking like a dead deal with now new deals on the horizon. What this means for the franchise isn't definite. There are rumors of the owners moving the team to St. Louis or Phoenix. There is the possibility that the group redeveloping the old Geneva Steelworks site in Provo could buy the team and build a stadium as part of it's huge in-fill project. And just maybe a 11th hour deal will emerge for Sandy. What we do know is things look worse than they did for the team ago despite great attendance in it's 2nd year and landing one of the most promising talents in American soccer, Freddy Adu.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Bale Not Leaving Southampton.....Yet

Time after time we see reports linking Gareth Bale with Manchester United, Arsenal and other clubs. But, to the best of my knowledge, have never had a quote from someone like Sir Alex where the specifically states exactly how serious he is about buying Bale. Why does that matter? Because short of that all we have are rumors that the clubs are interested, let alone exactly how interested they are. On the other hand I keep seeing quotes, such as the ones in this article at ESPN, where either Bale himself or someone else very specifically says Gareth Bale has no interest in leaving Saints whether it's because he wants to further develop as a player (he's only 17), that his family says he's happy where he is, and other such things. You tend to see this sort of thing with other rumored moves. Right before announcing his pre-contract with LA, David Beckham expressed that his family was quite happy in Madrid. The devil is in the detail. In the case of Beckham he didn't express this sort of thing too often. And at that the words chosen tended to be less definitive. In the case of Bale there have been more quotes by various people being much more specific. I'm fully convinced that this young man has no desire to leave Southampton, at least not quite yet.

The Scoop On Colorado Rapids Draft Selections

If you're looking for some information on how the draft went for the Colorado Rapids, check out this post on the FC Rocky blog at the Rocky Mountain News.

Funny Beckham Photo Of The Day

There have been a lot of funny posts about Beckham floating around since he signed a pre-contract with the Los Angeles Galaxy. One of my favorites was the headline that Beckham as retired (thus commentary on the relatively low-level of skill in the MLS compared to La Liga). Today's Beckham post at Who Ate All The Pies tops it. It's a funny write up that included this picture :

Ronaldo To Milan

There are several reports out there such as this one at Club Call (cited by Soccer By Ives) linking Ronaldo with a move to Milan. It doesn't look like he'll be joining New York Red Bull even though Real Madrid are willing to sell him. It makes me wonder why NYRB was so quick in trading for a second designated player slot (aka the Beckham Rule) when they didn't have any deals to use up the first one. Was Bruce Arena that desperate to off-load Guevara?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

MLS Draft :: Who's Picked First?

It is impossible to know. But last year with Wynne it was nearly a given that he was going to go first in the draft. But as time progresses it's likely to be less and less clear. You have players like Greg Dalby or Charlie Davies who would would normally have gone in the first round if not a first pick (especially Davies) but they instead either signed a deal with a club in Europe or at least like Dalby haven't signed with the league. Teams don't want to risk a first round pick on a player that's not yet signed with the league. These days there's too much of a risk they'll sign with a European club. A few other blogs covering the MLS draft : College To Pros Draft Coverage FC Dallas Draft Picks DC United Draft New England Revolution Draft Coverage Rapids Draft Picks