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A bunch of link goodies for Thursday
   July 24, 2014 (12:02 AM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

This summer has been a busy one and here are a bunch more links from the last couple of days.

The big news of yesterday was that DaMarcus Beasley signed a DP contract with the Houston Dynamo.  He becomes the 10th current USMNT player on a designated player contract with MLS.

Danny Williams had surgery on his knee earlier this week.  This is the second time in the last five months that Williams has had some form of surgery on his knee.  No word on how serious or how long he will be out.

Freddy Adu appears to be in talks with FK Jagodina in Serbia.  And he is also getting some interest from a team in Cyprus.

Juan Agudelo has been in Florida training with Orlando City, but much like Brek Shea a couple months ago, this is just a training thing.  He won’t be signing with Orlando City.

Jozy Altidore’s summer vacation is finally ending as he is expected to be back with Sunderland today.

Much like Jermaine Jones throwing out the first pitch with the Dodgers a couple weeks ago, Geoff Cameron did the same with the Red Sox last week and Brad Guzan did it with the Cubs this week.

Do you like stats and numbers?  I did a quick look at Tim Howard, Brad Guzan, Geoff Cameron and Alejandro Bedoya yesterday.  I plan on doing another one next week on a couple guys from the Championship.

A few of the younger US players (and prospects) will be making the trek to the US with their European teams in the next week.  Gedion Zelalem is on Arsenal’s roster which will take on the New York Red Bulls on Saturday.  Emerson Hyndman made Fulham’s squad which is headed to Jacksonville to take on DC United this weekend.  And we already know that Julian Green is with Bayern Munich as they take on the MLS All-Stars.  Pep Guardiola spoke to the US press about Green and how he doesn’t want to loan him out this year.

Another youth player, Lynden Gooch, has been receiving some praise from Sunderland fans this week.  Gooch came off the bench with Sunderland’s first team in a friendly against Carlisle United on Tuesday.  Then he made another appearance with the first team on Wednesday in a friendly against Hartlepool United and assisted on one goal (GIF highlights).

Alfredo Morales scored a goal for FC Ingolstadt in a friendly against Nurnberg earlier this week.  Here is a photo of Morales in action.

Sacha Kljestan is still with Anderlecht and went the full 90 minutes in a friendly earlier this week.

Brek Shea is receiving some praise for his play in Stoke City’s friendly against Borussia Monchengladbach.

Edgar Castillo (and his odd #1 jersey number) talked to Tom Marshall about still trying to keep the USMNT dream alive.

Bobby Wood came off the bench in 1860 Munich’s 3-0 win over SV Heimstetten in a friendly yesterday.  Here is a photo of him in action.

For those of you holding out to buy a Junior Flores/Borussia Dortmund jersey, you can go get those #22 jerseys now.  For those ultimate soccer jersey hipsters, Alonso Hernandez will wear #13 for Monterrey in Mexico.

Will Packwood played with Birmingham City’s U-21 team the other day in a private friendly.  Sounds like he missed a little time recently “after suffering from illness”, but he is now back in action.

The US U-20 team now knows the format for January’s CONCACAF U-20 Championship.  It will be two groups of six teams with the winners of each group clinching a spot in the U-20 World Cup, while the second and third place teams from each group doing a four-team playoff for the last two spots.

One player who might be on that U-20 team, Fernando Arce Jr., talked to Brian Sciaretta about selecting to play for the US over Mexico even though his dad played for Mexico.

Goalkeeper Phil Saunders has signed with Icelandic 1st Division side BÍ/Bolungarvik.

Former Bucknell product Conor O’Brien made the jump to Denmark out of college and now another Bison is headed to Denmark.  This time it is Mayowa Alli and he is signing with Vensyssel in the Danish First Division (second tier).

With Roma in Boston this week, Keith Costigan talked to Roma president James Pallotta and Pallotta claims that we can expect “an announcement in the next few weeks” in regards to an American going to the club.  Could the DeAndre Yedlin deal be back on or could it be another player?  Or could it be nothing?  I have no clue.

US Soccer and Sporting Kansas City are building a new National Training and Coaching Development Center in Kansas City.  Sounds like this would be the main training hub for coaches and refs, while I think they will also get some USMNT/USWNT/youth team camps at the complex (along with the StubHub Center in Carson, California) once it is completed.

In the random but awesome jersey department.  I want this jersey of a lower level Spanish team.  And if the Big Ten had pro-style jerseys with sponsors, here is what one person thinks they would look like.  Basically my Hawkeyes would be Borussia Dortmund.

And finally, this site has been receiving a lot more traffic this month (likely due to the World Cup fever) along with a lot more Twitter and Facebook followers.  If you are new to the site, thanks for checking us out.  If you are not new to the site, thanks for continuing to check us out.  It is nice to see this site grow with all of you.

 
Categories: Alejandro Bedoya, Alfredo Morales, Alonso Hernandez, Bobby Wood, Brad Guzan, Brek Shea, DaMarcus Beasley, Danny Williams, DeAndre Yedlin, Edgar Castillo, Emerson Hyndman, Fernando Arce Jr., Freddy Adu, Gedion Zelalem, Geoff Cameron, Jozy Altidore, Juan Agudelo, Julian Green, Junior Flores, Lynden Gooch, Mayowa Alli, Phil Saunders, Sacha Kljestan, Tim Howard, US Men's National Team, US U-20 National Team, Will Packwood
2 Comments
 

DaMarcus Beasley signs with Houston Dynamo
   July 23, 2014 (1:25 PM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

DaMarcus Beasley is yet another USMNT player who is coming back to MLS after signing with the Houston Dynamo today.   He becomes the 10th current USMNT player on a designated player contract with MLS.

The 32-year-old defender/midfielder was rumored to be talking with MLS since the World Cup ended.  Steven Goff was able to figure out it was an Eastern Conference team and all signs pointed to Houston after they made a trade with Toronto this morning to get to the top of the allocation ranking.

Beasley joins the team on a free transfer after his contract with Puebla ended after this past season.  Beasley appeared in 92 league games for Puebla over the past three seasons.

“I am excited and ready to start this new chapter in my career,” said Beasley. “I have heard great things from Brad (Davis) and Rico (Clark) about Houston, the team and the fans, and I’m excited to get to know them. I feel fit and ready to go and hope Dom (Kinnear) will see my work ethic and desire to play at a high level.”

The Fort Wayne, Indiana native also returns to MLS after playing five seasons with the Chicago Fire between 2000-2004.

Thoughts on Beasley’s move back to MLS?

 
Categories: DaMarcus Beasley
6 Comments
 

Inside the Numbers: A look back at last season
   July 23, 2014 (8:00 AM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

As a new season approaches, I thought I would take a quick look back at last season.  I know I wanted to do something with numbers when I came across the website Squawka during the World Cup.  It has a bunch of numbers pulled from Opta data and puts it in a nice little stat search engine.

From there, I decided to play around with it until I was able to find some Americans on some top lists.  I will state this from the beginning, some of these are just basic numbers that make the various guys look good without any help from me, while some other things were edited down until I was able to get someone on a list.  I was trying my best to make the various Americans look good (USA! USA! USA!).  That said, here we go.

Tim Howard is coming off one of the best seasons of his career as he recorded 15 shutouts during the 2013-14 Premier League season, his second most in a single season since coming to Everton.  And the 15 shutouts were the third most in the EPL in 2013-14.  After looking at the Top 5 European leagues (England, Spain, Germany, Italy and France), he was in the Top 15, but most of the guys ahead of him were on teams who were really good and didn’t face a lot of shots.  After narrowing down the search some more, I was able to find that Howard was one of two goalkeepers from a Top 5 European league who registered at least 15 shutouts over the 2013-14 season while also recording 90 or more saves.  As for the other goalkeeper, CONCACAF pride.

howard

Moving onto another American goalkeeper in the Premier League.  Resident goalkeeper guru Will has said in the past when comparing Tim Howard and Brad Guzan, Howard is more a reactive goalie while Guzan is a little bit more aggressive at coming out to get balls, especially on crosses.  After a simple search, no goalkeeper from a Top 5 European league came close to claiming as many crosses as Guzan last season.

Guzan

Most of the time when you look at interception lists (when a player cuts out an opposition pass), it is usually filled with defensive midfielders and centerbacks, but Geoff Cameron has taken these skills to the right back position at Stoke City.  His 91 interceptions were the sixth most in the Premier League, fourth most among defenders and second most among right backs.

Cameron

Heading over to France, Alejandro Bedoya had a decent debut season at Nantes.  Squawka has a stat called shot accuracy percentage, which is shots on target (minus blocked shots) divided by total shot attempts (minus blocked shots).  And Mr. Bedoya ranked fourth in this category among Ligue 1 midfielders with at least 40 total shot attempts last season.  Basically he was putting his shots on frame.

Bedoya

That is it for this week.  I will be back next week with a English League Championship edition as that league starts up on August 8.

 
Categories: Alejandro Bedoya, Brad Guzan, Geoff Cameron, Inside the Numbers, Tim Howard
No Comments
 

Danny Williams has surgery on his knee
   July 23, 2014 (12:50 AM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

Danny Williams was likely on the fringe of making the USMNT 30-man World Cup camp roster last spring before a knee injury plagued a lot of the second half of his season.  Williams appeared in 24 of the team’s first 32 league games of the season, but only played in six of Reading’s final 14 games battling an issue with his knee.

While the US were in Brazil, the 25-year-old midfielder was posting a lot of photos of him working out and rehabbing his knee during the summer on his Instagram account.  Then he posted this photo on his account yesterday.

did everything to avoid knee surgery but at the end of the day u have to listen to your body. behind every negative there is a POSITIVE!!!! looking forward to coming back stronger!!! thanks for all the support!

As I type up this post, there has been no official word from Reading on the extent of his injury/surgery or how long the midfielder will be out of action.

 
Categories: Danny Williams
3 Comments
 

Greuther Fürth II vs. Schweinfurt Highlights
   July 22, 2014 (8:20 AM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

Jann George scored his second goal of the season over the weekend in Greuther Fürth II’s 3-1 win over Schweinfurt.  Here are some highlights of the game with George’s goal coming at the 0:46 mark.

 
Categories: Highlights, Jann George
3 Comments
 

A lot of linkage for Tuesday
   July 22, 2014 (12:01 AM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

Want some links?  Well, here you go.

The big news of the weekend was that Matt Besler and Graham Zusi signed DP contracts through 2018 with Kansas City.  Besler wrote a letter to Kansas City fans explaining why he decided to stay in KC.  There are now nine current USMNT players with DP contracts in MLS.

MLS Insider did a video on the MLS players on the USMNT returning from Brazil.

No team ran more in the field (per game) than the US at the World Cup.

The US U-20 team won the NTC Invitational last week.  You can watch the entire game against Australia right here.  US Soccer also has a video up with some post-game reactions from Tab Ramos and Paul Arriola.

According to Greg Seltzer, DeAndre Yedlin to Roma is dead.  There are still other teams interested in him.

And according to Steven Goff, free agent DaMarcus Beasley is close to signing with MLS.  And something could be finalized by the end of the week.

Not really a surprise, but Julian Green was named to Bayern Munich’s roster for their US tour.  They will take on the MLS All-Stars in Portland on August 6.

Brek Shea played 45 minutes in the second half of Stoke City’s 1-1 draw to Borussia Monchengladbach in a friendly over the weekend.  According to reviews that I have read, he played well and you can watch the entire second half right here.

Joe Gyau scored Borussia Dortmund’s winning goal in a 4-3 win over Heidenheim in a friendly on Saturday.  Here are a couple photos of Gyau in action.  Kicker also listed Gyau in their top 20 players in 3. Liga for this upcoming season (if he stays with Dortmund’s U-23 team).

Duane Holmes scored one goal and assisted on another in Huddersfield Town’s 4-1 win over Guiseley in a friendly on Monday.

Shawn Parker scored the game-tying goal in FC Augsburg’s 3-3 draw to Ulm in some more friendly action on Monday.

Shawn’s brother, Devante Parker, picked up an ankle injury in a friendly against Kaiserslautern.

Rubio Rubin had to leave a game early this weekend after having a nasty collision which required some kind of facial surgery yesterday.

Sebastian Lletget assisted on a goal in West Ham U-21′s 4-2 win over a Espanyol youth team.

Danny Barbir continues to score goals for West Brom’s U-18 team.

Edgar Castillo made his Atlas Liga MX debut over the weekend and he is wearing the rare #1 for a field player.

After his World Cup vacation, Timothy Chandler is now in training with Eintracht Frankfurt.

Clint Dempsey will be on the North America covers of FIFA 15.

Jon-Paul Pittman’s quest to find a new team now sees him trialing with Grimsby Town.

Brandon McDonald and Swedish side Ljungskile have parted ways.

The Lancashire Telegraph has a story up about Adam Henley trying to earn a starting spot with Blackburn Rovers this season.

Nicholas Gaitan has been promoted to OFI Crete’s first team for this season.

The New York Daily News is reporting that 14-year-old Noah Leeds was offered a place in Sevilla FC’s youth academy.

That is it for links.  I should be posting a little stats thing tomorrow.

 
Categories: Adam Henley, Brandon McDonald, Brek Shea, Clint Dempsey, DaMarcus Beasley, Danny Barbir, DeAndre Yedlin, Devante Parker, Duane Holmes, Edgar Castillo, Graham Zusi, Joe Gyau, Jon-Paul Pittman, Julian Green, Matt Besler, Nicholas Gaitan, Noah Leeds, Paul Arriola, Rubio Rubin, Sebastian Lletget, Shawn Parker, Timothy Chandler, US Men's National Team, US U-20 National Team
8 Comments
 

Stoke City vs. Borussia Monchengladbach Highlights (Entire 2nd Half)
   July 21, 2014 (8:00 AM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

Brek Shea played the entire second half in Stoke City’s 1-1 draw to Borussia Monchengladbach this weekend.  Someone actually put the entire second half up on Youtube, so here you go.

 
Categories: Brek Shea, Highlights
4 Comments
 

JIPPO vs. HIFK Highlights
   July 20, 2014 (2:06 PM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

This game was from Thursday in Finland, but Nathan Stockie and Miles Byass both went 90 minutes with Byass scoring a pretty nice goal in JIPPO’s 4-2 loss to HIFK.  Here are some highlights from the Finnish Ykkönen with Byass’ goal coming at the 4:42 mark.

 
Categories: Highlights, Miles Byass, Nathan Stockie
4 Comments
 

Landskrona vs. Värnamo Highlights
   July 19, 2014 (3:02 PM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

Andrew Stadler and Paul Torres both started and scored a goal in Landskrona’s 3-1 win over Värnamo in Sweden on Saturday.  Stadler has now scored in each of his last five games and has nine goals on the season, tied for the third most in the Superettan.  Here are some highlights with Stadler’s goal at the 0:26 mark and Torres at the 0:41 mark.

 
Categories: Andrew Stadler, Highlights, Paul Torres
No Comments
 

Graham Zusi & Matt Besler are staying in Kansas City
   July 19, 2014 (2:08 PM) by Matt Benson     Email This Post Email This Post
 

Both players were just on ESPN2′s halftime of Seattle-Tottenham to announce that both players have signed new contracts to be designated players through the 2018 season.

 
Categories: Graham Zusi, Matt Besler
11 Comments
 

 
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