A bunch of stuff from this week and other stuff from last week that I meant to post but didn’t, so let’s get after it.
Yesterday was a good day for Americans in Europe. John Brooks continued his recent strong play by scoring his first goal since THAT goal against Ghana (highlights from yesterday). Over in Belgium, Sacha Kljestan came off the bench and scored a goal in Anderlecht’s 3-0 win in the Belgian Cup (highlights). Also in the Belgian Cup, Kenny Saief scored for Gent in their 4-1 win (no highlights found yet). And back in Germany, Alfredo Morales was credited with an assist in Ingolstadt’s 2-1 win, but his teammate did most of the dirty work (highlights).
Howie posted some links about Brek Shea heading back to the US and Orlando City, but Greg Seltzer is hearing that some other Championship teams might be still interested in his services.
Herculez Gomez is headed back to Puebla. This will be his seventh different stint with a Liga MX team in the last five seasons, but he would be returning to his original stint/team where he won his scoring title in 2010.
Ventura Alvarado and Club America won the Apertura title this past fall so here are two interviews for you, one in English and one in Spanish.
Dom Dwyer signed a new contract with Sporting Kansas City which will keep him in the US for a while longer. Since he received his green card in 2012, he would be eligible to apply for citizenship in 2017.
After a stint in England that could optimistically be described as disastrous, Stoke/Birmingham (on loan) winger Brek Shea has lined up a stateside return to join MLS expansion team Orlando City, according to local Orlando media.
Orlando City is finalizing a move to sign the U.S. winger from Stoke City, according to multiple sources with direct knowledge of the move. The transfer, expected to be completed in the coming days, will bring back the former Major League Soccer All-Star and Best XI selection and could reinvigorate the career of a top U.S. prospect.
Let’s start off with some leftovers from last Friday. Oguchi Onyewu is showing off the importance of having an EU passport as he continues to find work in England as he signed with Charlton Athletic until January.
CONCACAF held the draw for the 2015 CONCACAF U-20 Championship last week and the US U-20 team has learned its fate.
Greg Seltzer takes a look at some possible January transfer scenarios for Jozy Altidore, Mix Diskerud and Brek Shea. One of the teams mentioned for Altidore is the French side Lille and there might be some more to this possible loan according to this tweet from a reporter who follows the French league. I think we are all in agreement that Jozy just needs to get out of Sunderland.
Jozy Altidore in 10 EPL games this season: 0 starts 6 appearances 81 minutes 2 shots 9/20 passing
The rumored USMNT friendly against Croatia at Craven Cottage for November (that their federation announced) looks to be no mas. That said, US Soccer looks to be talking to Colombia about filling that void and still playing at Craven Cottage. But if you remember, Colombia was the team that US Soccer tried to schedule for September for the second friendly and that fell through. Basically nothing is official until US Soccer announces something.
This was the weekend of players returning to the field. Geoff Cameron came off the bench and played 29 minutes (completing 15-of-15 passes) in Stoke City’s 2-1 win over Swansea City. Stoke City’s website got a couple post-game quotes from Cameron.
Terrence Boyd made his return this weekend, coming off the bench and playing 29 minutes in RB Leipzig’s 1-0 loss to Nurnberg. Here is a photo of Boyd in action.
Aron Johannsson played in his first game since the World Cup. It was with AZ Alkmaar’s reserve team on Monday, but he scored from the penalty spot (highlights).
While he didn’t come back from injury, John Brooks appears to be out of the dog house as he came off the bench for Hertha Berlin in a 2-0 loss to Schalke.
And while we had those players coming back, we did have a couple Americans pick up injuries this weekend.
In the battle of American goalkeepers, Tim Howard (photo) and Everton defeated Brad Guzan (photo) and Aston Villa. It was Howard’s 350th career Premier League appearance, trailing only Brad Friedel (450) for the most all-time by an American.
Fulham got their first league win of the season yesterday in a 2-1 win over Birmingham City. Emerson Hyndman got the start and went 45 minutes for Fulham, while Jonathan Spector played 90 minutes and Brek Shea came off the bench and played 45 minutes for Birmingham City. Here are some highlights.
But some other non-goal scoring noteworthy stuff happened this past weekend as well. Brad Guzan now leads all Premier League goalkeepers in clean sheets this season after posting a 1-0 win over Liverpool at Anfield (highlights). He was happy about the win.
Brek Shea made his Birmingham City debut and assisted on the Blues’ lone goal in their 1-1 draw to Leeds United (highlights). His performance was also worthy of Man of the Match honors by Birmingham City’s fans.
Julian Green also made his Hamburg debut, getting the start but getting subbed out at halftime of their 2-0 loss to Hannover 96. By most accounts, he was pretty so-so. Here is a photo of him in action (I really do like those white shirts). And Hamburg’s manager Mirko Slomka was fired.
On the youth team sides, Andrija Novakovich scored a goal for Reading’s U-18 team in a 2-1 win over Brighton & Hove Albion. And Kyle Scott scored a goal for Chelsea’s U-18 team in a 2-2 draw to West Ham United.
Aron Johannsson will never get to play a game for new manager Marco van Basten as he has stepped down due to health issues.
Brek Shea made his Birmingham City debut today, starting and playing 67 minutes in a 1-1 draw. He also assisted on Birmingham City’s lone goal of the game. Jonathan Spector also came off the bench and played 11 minutes for the Blues. Here are some highlights with Shea’s assist at the 1:07 mark.
A few things to get in before the weekend starts up.
Brek Shea’s loan to Birmingham City became official yesterday. He will be with the club for three months. Birmingham City’s manager Lee Clark also said he even tried to buy Shea permanently before the season, so it looks like Clark will give him a chance to play. Here is also a short video interview with Brekken.
As for some bad news, Freiburg midfielder Caleb Stanko tore his ACL. Stanko has been mainly playing with Freiburg II this season and was hoping to make his senior team debut this year.
The big news of yesterday was that Geoff Cameron underwent hernia surgery on Wednesday and will be out for an unknown amount of time. This has been a disaster of an opening 2014-15 season for Cameron.
As for his Stoke City teammate, Brek Shea looks to be headed to Birmingham City on a loan and will be available for selection this weekend as the Blues take on Leeds United. Shea will join fellow Americans Will Packwood and Jonathan Spector at the club.
Julian Green’s chances of making his Hamburg debut this weekend are decent as the club is battling a few injuries to some attacking players.
Berti Vogts doesn’t like when Borussia Monchengladbach manager Lucien Favre plays Fabian Johnson at positions that are not named right back.
Greg Seltzer broke out his stat notebook and has a bunch of random numbers for your viewing pleasure. Based on the old MLS scoring system (two points for a goal, one point for an assist), Jozy Altidore’s 2012-13 was the best by any American in a top-flight league in Europe.
The US U-20 team ended their Argentina adventure with a 1-1 draw to Argentina’s U-20 team. Zach Pfeffer scored the lone goal for the US.
Jurgen Klinsmann did a Q&A on US Soccer’s website about the young guns and last week’s game. Remember how we beat the Czech Republic on their home turf? That same team just beat the Netherlands, 2-1, in a Euro qualifier this week.
Brian Sciaretta decided to do a transfer report card on seven key Americans. He likes Johnson’s move to Borussia Monchengladbach the most and I can’t really complain.
Some horrible news for Quentin Westberg and Luzenac as the club has been denied access to Ligue 2. The club is not even allowed to go back to the National (third tier) so it will now play in the the amateur seventh division with all current players released of their contracts.
Christopher McCollum caught up with Brandon Scott to talk about his debut season with Leiknir Reykjavík as they have earned promotion to the Icelandic Úrvalsdeild with two games remaining.
Mike Woitalla introduces us to the latest American teenager being courted by both the US and Mexico.