MLS Daily Sweeper, 01.02.08: Trade Rumors to Dull the January Jones

Last night I told my wife I was happy to have an off-season from soccer, just a little time off from building my life around the domestic calendar’s schedule.  These are the little lies that sustain a marriage…

– …and I say that ’cause a wicked craving hit the second I checked the upcoming calendar on soccertv.com. What is the next game involving either a Yank club or the Yanquis proper?  The Pan-Pacific Tournament – a.k.a. the LA Galaxy’s latest whip-round for cash – doesn’t kick off till mid-late February – and that’s more like cut-rate codeine than methadone.  I suppose the U.S. Men’s National team get first crack with the January 19 game versus Sweden, but that’s also a friendly, just like the Mexico game in early February.  So, yeah, we’re a long way from competitive soccer featuring enough Yanks to kill my personal jones; we’re probably looking at Olympic qualifying before anything else….shit.

– Speaking of those friendlies – and I know I’m way behind on this – the U.S. men have a couple camps going on, one for the full national and one for the U-23s.  That Oursports Central site has a one-stop release (yeah, I know they lifted it, but it’s where I look) that lists players for both sides.  And, quickly, here’s who either “turns” my crank, “piques” my curiosity, or makes me “titter” for the full national side: Will Hesmer (titter; where’s Ray Burse?); Zach Wells (titter); Eddie Robinson (turns; make room on the damn bandwagon); Marvell Wynne (piques); Maurice Edu (turns); Brad Davis (turns); Josmer Altidore (piques); Jeremiah White (piques); Justin Mapp (turns); Eddie Johnson (titter).  The rest strike me as more of the same…and that’s not necessarily bad.

So, yeah, we’re all standing here just biding time and holding our most precious body parts as we do so…so let’s get to the big rumor floating around.

– Yep, Luis Figo to “AEG” – as in, not an individual club, but to a corporate entity called “AEG.”  Does that sound some kind of wrong to anyone besides me?  Whatever you think of the move – and I’ll get to what I think about it in a bit – you’d do well to read Soccer by Ives’ write-up on how this should work within Major League Soccer’s (MLS) ever-baffling roster rules.  Seems to check out OK, mechanically at least.  In terms of advisability, well…that’s something else.  With my incredibly wrong prediction that Cuauhtemoc Blanco would wig out and suck in MLS in the front of my mind, I’m still going to say this one looks like a bad idea – not “Denilson” bad, but I don’t think this is the answer for the LA Galaxy…at least not unless they want to change their name back to the Aztecs.  This trade is “NASL-esque” as I see it.  But, as with Blanco, I’d love to be proved wrong.

– One other “minor-ish” trade happened while I was away: Andy Dorman’s departure to Scotland’s St. Mirren from the New England Revolution.  The trade itself isn’t all that interesting, not least because Dorman effectively sat out the last half of 2007, but the details on this trade – e.g. Dorman’s passport-fueled leverage and MLS’s inability/unwillingness to meet it – says plenty about where MLS stands on the world stage.

– Since writing my recap of 2007 on the domestic scene, I’ve come across a bunch of other worthwhile pieces by some professional pundits.  While we hit on several of the same subjects, it’s often from different angles (which I regard as both healthy and natural).  But one area of particular divergence comes on the subject of Mr. David Beckham.  For example, Ives Galarcep looks more charitably on Beckham’s impact on the league in his Top 10 stories of 2007 revue for ESPN; Nick Green does much the same in his 2007 wrap for the Daily Breeze (and that’s in spite of an interesting jab toward the bottom about LA being “a franchise infatuated with famous names”).  So who’s with me on taking a shot at suggesting them balls ain’t as golden as they should be?  Paul Gardner…which makes me think there’s something to that whole old-in-the-head vibe I’ve been feeling lately.  Anyway, there’s plenty more about MLS and U.S. soccer in each of those wraps so they’re all worth the look (even mine).

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One Response

  1. […] First of all, consider this post a replacement for the middle section of yesterday’s awful, barely-considered post.  I’ll be addressing this later […]

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