The Math for Bringing Back Benny F.

In an attempt to improve on covering stories until they reach an end, I updated my earlier post on Benny Feilhaber’s now-kiboshed move to Maccabi Tel Aviv; England’s Derby County rejected the move.

There was more to the story – and I covered it in the update – but there’s more still yet in play…enough so that to warrant a new post. A blurb by Richard Jolly for ESPN noted “a lot of interest” in moving Feilhaber to Major League Soccer (MLS). There’s a lot to like about this and on a couple levels. First, unless fans across the country all rate him higher than MLS’s coaches, Feilhaber will get plenty of playing time in the States. That plays into a secondary element: keeping Feilhaber fit and available – i.e. more than he is currently – for the U.S. National Team. And that’s a good thing, even if he doesn’t pan out for the U.S.; at least we’ll know, right?

The tricky bit comes with the money side – and this something a few people are kicking around today, WVHooligan among them. Even setting aside a transfer fee – and that could hurt badly enough – the trickier part is Feilhaber’s pay. Is he worth designated player money? Much as I like Benny, he’s too green, too unknown to justify that kind of money. So, does he want to play badly enough to take what would likely be a whopping pay cut?

Curiously, it’s MLS Rumors that came up with a plausible, even likely, solution (I went with “curiously” because I count on that site for rumors first and analysis second):

“According to a source it is quite possible Derby will send him to MLS on a loan deal and if that happens his most likely destination is San Jose.”

Ta-da! Benny gets to play, Derby keeps an asset, and, assuming I understand how loans work, pays Benny’s bills. Whether or not this comes together, the mechanics of the deal “a source” describes sounds workable.


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