A few guys scored goals today, but I can’t find any highlights as of right now. Chad Barrett had a good game, getting involved in two of the goals. As for the goal scorers, Charles Kazlauskas scored a goal in Helmond Sport’s season-opening 2-1 victory over Telstar. And Jann George (Nurnberg II) and Andrew Wooten (Kaiserslautern II) each scored in their respective Regionalliga games.
Also while looking through the box scores from today, I noticed that Quentin Westberg is no longer with Evian TG. He got the start at goalkeeper for US Luzenac in their 1-0 loss to Boulogne in the French National (third division) today.
Do you like links? Then you will like today’s post.
Still not over Timothy Chandler? Brian Sciaretta and Ives Galarcep each give their thoughts on Chandler-gate. I can’t wait until someone named Gate/Gait gets in trouble so we can have Gate-gate.
US U-20 forward Jerome Kiesewetter has left Hertha Berlin and has signed a new four-year deal with VfB Stuttgart. Kiesewetter is a German-American who played with the US U-18 team at the 2011 Milk Cup and was part of the US U-23/U-20 camp in November. He leaves behind Alfredo Morales and Anthony Brooks at Hertha Berlin, who were just relegated to the 2. Bundesliga.
With Hapoel Tel Aviv winning the State Cup, Leo Krupnik and Maccabi Netanya will be in next year’s Euopra League.
Seltzer also did an interview with Evian TG goalie Quentin Westberg about his first season in Ligue 1 since 2006.
The Guardian released their team of the year based on the game-by-game player ratings given by the readers and even they are shocked that Clint Dempsey did not make it. He wasn’t even rated as the top player for Fulham this season.
Sticking with Dempsey, he will be participating in some All-Star game in Miami in June, which will also feature players like Didier Drogba, Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez among others. It also looks like Carlos Bocanegra and Jozy Altidore will be playing in the game. Here is the website for the game.
Brian Sciaretta has an interview up with Sacha Kljestan over at the NY Times soccer blog on Kljestan’s breakout season at Anderlecht. Based on his quotes in this interview and the fact that he is celebrating his bachelor party this week (according to him on twitter), I don’t think he will be named to the USMNT roster this upcoming Sunday unless some midfielders pick up some injuries.
It should be interesting to see what happens this summer to Stuart Holden and Tim Ream as Bolton announced a plan to slash their wage bill by 50 percent before next season.
And finally, here are some more rumored/leaked kits for next season.
Brian Sciaretta talked to German-American Fabian Johnson to find out that the 23-year-old midfielder/defender would at least consider a switch to the US if they came calling. Johnson currently plays at TSG Hoffenheim after stints at 1860 Munich and Wolfsburg. He has been playing at midfield for Hoffenheim this season, but has made appearances at left back and right back for both 1860 Munich and Wolfsburg.
Like most German-American soccer players, he was born in Germany, but is the son of an American serviceman and he holds a US passport. Johnson grew up in the German youth system, but has yet to play with the senior team. If he were to make the swap, he would have to go through FIFA to make the one-time switch to play in an official FIFA game for the USMNT.
While he has not come out and said he would switch, he has at least come out and said he would think it over for the first time.
“I can honestly say that I have not received any phone call [from the USSF],” Johnson added. “So I haven’t really thought it over seriously.”
Jurgen, please call him.
According to this article in the Yorkshire Evening Post, Tony Taylor is on trial at Leeds United.
Youngster Lester Dewee did not play, but he did make the bench in Ängelholm’s 3-1 victory over Degerfors in Swedish Superettan action today.
And finally, Quentin Westberg returned to the bench for Evian TG in their 1-1 draw to Ajaccio today. After starting the first two games of the season, he is now the number two goalkeeper as Evian signed Brøndby’s keeper Stephan Andersen earlier this week. While Westberg has played alright, Andersen has much more experience (100+ league games at Brøndby as well as eight games with Denmark’s national team).
I will also announce the winner of the free t-shirt later tonight/early tomorrow.
Quentin Westberg continued to start in Bertrand Laquait’s absence and picked up a clean sheet in a 1-0 win over Nice. While Laquait will likely return to the lineup when healthy, Westberg is quietly making a case to Jürgen Klinsmann for a call-up.
Matt’s Pick – Chris Rolfe (Aalborg – Danish Superliga)
Speaking of potential USMNT call-ups, Chris Rolfe could be on his way if he continues to find the back of the net much like he did in Aalborg’s 2-1 victory over OB.
The US U-18ers kicked off the 2011 Milk Cup with a 2-0 victory over Israel. Goals were scored by Omar Salgado and Jerome Kiesewetter. I still can’t find any highlights, but here are some photos on the Milk Cup’s facebook page, including some from the US-Israel game (the US decided to break out the 2008 charcoal away jerseys).
The next game will be on Wednesday against Mexico, who lost 2-1 to Georgia today. The other game in the Elite bracket saw Denmark and Northern Ireland end up in a 1-1 draw. So a good start to the tournament for the US. There was also some chatter on Twitter that Bob Bradley was there in attendance (getting a look at potential 2012 Olympic squad players?).
It looks like Anton Peterlin impressed enough during his trial at Walsall as he has accepted a one-year deal with the League One club, who are nicknamed the Saddlers.
While one American impressed during his trial, goalkeeper Chris Konopka did not do enough during his trial with Oxford United as they have decided to not keep him on a permanent basis.
Thanks to Armando for sending this one in, but here is a video interview with Jozy Altidore up on AZ’s official site.
There is a chance Quentin Westberg will be Evian TG’s starting goalkeeper come August 6 when they travel to Brest for the first game of the Ligue 1 season. Just like the end of last year, starting goalkeeper Bertrand Laquait has picked up an injury and manager Bernard Casoni will have to decide between Westberg and Johann Durand if thigh injury is that bad. Westberg got the call last year and Evian TG won its last three games with the French-born American between the sticks.
The big news of the day is coming out of Portugal were various reports are linking Oguchi Onyewu with a possible move from AC Milan to Sporting CP. While Onyewu did not play during the 2011 Gold Cup, Sporting are apparently looking to strengthen their backline and have been impressed with Onyewu since his days with Standard Liege.
Also, while looking at Sporting CP facts on wikipedia, this made me laugh for some reason.
Sporting Clube de Portugal, also known as Sporting or Sporting CP, and in English often unofficially and wrongly referred as Sporting Lisbon.
If Gooch does make the move to Sporting, he would be joining a team that finished third in last year’s Primeira Liga and qualified for Europa League.
Learning Dutch is gona be hard. Can I get the “how to” on Rosetta stone?
Jozy has been rumored/linked to Ajax, PSV Eindhoven and AZ over the last couple weeks, so he could be close to reaching a deal with one of those clubs (or someone else in the Eredivisie) or he is just having fun with his followers (if so, damn him!).
Greg Seltzer has some more transfer stuff up on No Short Corners, including that German side Karlsruher SC are haggling over a fee for Babajide Ogunbiyi with Viborg FF.
For those curious as to whether Quentin Westberg would continue to play with Evian TG, likely as their back-up, since their promotion to Ligue 1 next season, he has resigned with the club. As we all learned at the end of this season, he is one injury away from getting some valuable playing time.
Defensive midfielder Will Packwood recently signed a two year contract with Birmingham City after spending the previous three years with their academy team. The 18-year-old is hoping to breakthrough with the first team, although a loan deal to a smaller club to get playing time is more than likely.
* Chris Rolfe went the distance in Aalborg’s 4-3 loss to Silkeborg today, although he did pick up an assist on their second goal and here is a pretty cool photo of Rolfe from the game right here.
* Brian Sciaretta caught up with U-20 midfielder Fabian Hurzeler to talk about his season with Bayern Munich’s U-19 team and his thoughts on the US missing the U-20 World Cup.
* Everyone and their mother is being linked to AS Roma.
* Will Parchman over at No Short Corners makes his guess at the Gold Cup roster and claims that the following players are known already for making the provisional roster according to some inside sources: Timothy Chandler, Clarence Goodson, Eric Lichaj, Steve Cherundolo, Jonathan Spector, Juan Agudelo, Teal Bunbury. US Soccer will announce the roster for both the friendly against Spain and the Gold Cup on Monday.
If you follow me on Twitter, you saw me rambling about this yesterday for a bit. But after looking at some standings and tables in Europe, I noticed that there could be an American goalkeeper in France’s Ligue 1 in 2011-12. That goalie, pictured above, is Quentin Westberg.
With that said, it likely would be as a back-up goalkeeper.
For those that don’t follow too closely, Westberg is the back-up keeper at Evian Thonon Gaillard in France’s second division (Ligue 2). In France’s Ligue 2, the top three teams are promoted each season. Evian are currently in first place of Ligue 2 with 61 points, ahead of Dijon who is also on 61 points, but has a slightly smaller goal differential (+20 to +16). But with two games left on the schedule, there are five teams basically battling for those three spots.
As I mentioned above, he is currently the back-up goalkeeper, but should be involved in their promotion push. Evian’s starter, Bertrand Laquait, picked up a thigh injury and is out for the rest of the season. Laquait has started 34 of the team’s 36 games in league play this year with Westberg starting the other two games, including Evian’s game this past weekend. The other goalie on the roster, 29-year-old Johann Durand, has appeared in only one game this season, coming off the bench to relieve Laquait after he picked up his injury two weeks ago.
Most reports before this previous weekend’s game had Bernard Casoni still deciding whether to go with Westberg or Durand, with Casoni selecting Westberg. That decision now looks to be a smart one as Westberg anchored a defense that held his former team Troyes scoreless as Evian won 3-0. In Westberg’s other start in league play this season, he picked up another clean sheet in a 0-0 draw to Boulogne on September 27.
So if Casoni decides to go with Westberg again in the final two games, he has a good chance to solidify his spot as the #2 keeper for a possible Ligue 1 side or even impress some teams (possibly another Ligue 2 team?) into acquiring his services as a starting goalkeeper for 2011-12.
And for those of you that don’t know Westberg’s story, he was actually born and raised in France to an American father and a French mother. While he was raised in France, he chose to play for the US at the international level, first at the 2003 U-17 World Cup (notable players from that team: Jonathan Spector, Eddie Gaven, Freddy Adu, Danny Szetela and currently injured Mjøndalen defender Kyle Helton) then at the 2005 U-20 World Cup (notable players from that team: Marvell Wynne, Jonathan Spector, Sacha Kljestan, Benny Feilhaber, Freddy Adu, Lee Nguyen and Hunter Freeman).
Westberg got his first experience with a senior team at Troyes during the 2006-07 season. He spent four seasons at Troyes before signing with Evian in September of 2010.
Even if he is a back-up next season, it still would be nice to see another American on a top-flight team in one of the better leagues in Europe.
A pretty clever title. . . I know, right? [/sarcasm]
The biggest news of the day was US Soccer announcing two USMNT friendlies for the month of March. Here is the USMNT 2011 schedule for the next three months as of today:
1/22/2011 vs. Chile – Carson, California (Home Depot Center)
2/9/2011 vs. Egypt – Cairo, Egypt (Cairo International Stadium)
3/26/2011 vs. Argentina – E. Rutherford, New Jersey (New Meadowlands Stadium)
3/29/2011 vs. Paraguay – Nashville, Tennessee (LP Field)
Those four games will be against the #15, #10, #5 and #24 teams in the country. A pretty tough schedule to start the year and get the team ready for the Gold Cup.
Nick Green caught up with Eugene Starikov and A.J. DeLaGarza for a few words. I knew Starikov went to Stetson in Florida, but was unaware that he was from Huntington Beach, California (and he likes surfing…..in Soviet Russia, surfboard surfs you).
Kenny Cooper is officially leaving 1860 Munich in Germany to return to the MLS (Portland Timbers) as you can tell from this “long winded” AP release. I think this is a good move for Cooper.
Nottingham Forest will find out the fate of Robbie Findley’s work permit tomorrow at a hearing. Manager Billy Davies and Chief Executive Mark Arthur will represent Forest at the panel hearing.
While many of the top college players in the US were selected in today’s MLS SuperDraft (it is not only a Draft, but a SuperDraft), Virginia’s goalkeeper Diego Restrepo has agreed to terms with Colombian side America de Cali.
Arch Bell caught up with Evian TG goalkeeper Quentin Westberg after knocking out Olympique Marseille in the Coupe de France this past weekend.
And finally, Brian Sciaretta over at Yanks Abroad takes a stab at the “21 tickets” for the US U-20′s roster for the 2011 U-20 World Cup that will take place in August in Colombia.