Daily news roundups / Featured

TFC 2012 MLS schedule leaked. Okugo praise. Players Combine live. More.

Photo: Earl Gardner

Philadelphia Union

A leaked copy of Toronto FC’s 2012 schedule obtained by Canadian Soccer News shows the Union traveling to BMO Field on May 26 and Sept. 15, with the Canadian team at PPL Park on July 7. This unbalanced schedule thing is gonna take some getting used to.

The Yanks Are Coming says Amobi Okugo is the one midfielder on the US-23 squad most likely to have cemented a starting spot right now. “Supplanting him would be like Metallica giving lead guitarist Dave Mustaine a bus ticket and some well wishes on the eve of the Kill ‘Em All sessions.” They even use a (uncredited) picture taken from PSP’s photo essay of the Everton friendly to illustrate the story. The article also says Freddy Adu’s value to the squad shouldn’t be underestimated.

Also called up with Zach Pfeffer for the USMNT U-18 camp Jan. 2-9 in Ft. Lauderdale are Union Academy goalkeeper Zack Steffen (FC Delco) and defender Miguel Alves (PDA).

Michael Farfan came in second behind RSL midfielder Luis Gil as MLSsoccer.com’s Breakout Player of 2011. You can vote for Gabriel Farfan as the Breakout Player of 2012 in the story’s sidebar. I did.

Yanks Abroad 2011 Year in Review says of Freddy Adu, “His return to MLS came at the perfect time, and it’s paying dividends.”

Philadelphia Independence

US international and former Philadelphia Independence midfielder Lori Lindsey has signed with WNY Flash.

Local

Penn forward Duke Lacroix, recently named Ivy League Rookie of the Year, has been called up to the USMNT U-20 camp.

FC Pennsylvania Strikers won the title of the U-18 Blue Division of the US Youth Soccer National League and will play in the 2012 U.S. Youth Soccer National Championships March 23-25 in Las Vegas.

In addition to her recent call-up for the USWNT, it was recently announced that Delran’s Carli Lloyd has also joined the Philadelphia Soul’s “Philly Football Rocks” program.

MLS

You can watch all of the matches at the Players Combine live at MLSsoccer.com beginning on Friday at 2:45pm.

SB Nation has a list of 12 things that will “define” the 2012 MLS season.

Landon Donovan says he’s ready to play if David Moyes puts him on the roster for Everton’s match against Bolton later today. Moyes says, “He looks okay, I have to say, but how can you tell?” adding, “He has settled in very quickly, so we look forward to getting him in the game and seeing how he does.” By the way, if you happen to be in Liverpool, you can get Donovan’s name printed on the back of your Everton jersey for free today.

With the news that David Beckham has apparently decided to stay in LA—though no deal has yet been signed—ESPN wonders what his net value to the Galaxy is. ESPN’s Leander Schaerlaeckens worked so hard on the piece that, in addition to talking to a sports economist, he talked to former LA GM and current ESPN analyst Alexi Lalas and ESPN commentator Taylor Twellman. Too bad Beckham isn’t also working for ESPN.

While rumors circulate about a loan to Aston Villa, and new rumors about a return spell with Celtic emerge, Robbie Keane is training with Tottenham.

In addition to the details of his insurance coverage, differences over Thierry Henry’s return date to the Energy Drinks are holding up his loan to Arsenal. Apparently, New York wants him back for preseason training by Feb. 20 while Arsenal want him available to play against Tottenham on Feb. 26.

A neighborhood group has appealed the construction permit for San Jose Earthquakes new stadium.

US

Tickets for the USMNT Olympic the elimination-round qualifiers in Kansas City will go on sale on Jan. 11.

The Washington Post says the USMNT friendlies agaisnt Venezeula and Panama will likely only be available for viewing online at ESPN3. The article speculates that ESPN doesn’t see much ratings value in January friendlies and that the new NBC Sports Network is unlikely to broadcast soccer games before the start of the MLS season starts because the network is “still assembling production staff and finalizing logistics.”

Jurgen Klinsmann tells Reuters, “We’d like to take the team from a reactive style to playing with a more proactive style. It’s a huge change because in the past they were always used to reacting to whatever the big teams played against them…Americans are not reactive types of people—it’s not in their DNA. So why do you play a style that is not your culture?”

The contract of USMNT U-17 coach Wilmer Cabrera will not be renewed. Cabrera will lead the team through January, including a trip to Turkey. The announcement means that every head coach position on the male side of US Soccer has been changed in the past year.

The New York Times says that Clint Dempsey has raised the bar for US players in Europe.

Peubla says Eddie Johnson was not signed because he failed his physical.

Elsewhere

Liverpool manager Kenny Daglish has criticized the FA report detailing the reasons for Luis Suarez’ suspension, arguing that the full facts of the case have not been made public. You can read a transcript of Daglish’s comments here.

Business Insider has a slideshow of the ten highest paid soccer players in the world.

4 Comments

  1. Big shout out to Dempsey; he raised the bar and is absolutely class! Always enjoy watching him and his Fulham side.

    • Hell yea!
      I used to get annoyed by his occasional “rest periods” and defensive shortcomings on the pitch until i recognized that he compensates by using saved energy to out-muscle and out-leap bigger opponents late in games to score and assist critical goals (see Per Mertesacker, Monday’s game- didn’t go in, but Duece got up over him and powered a nice header just wide).

      Best footballer in London!

  2. MikeRSoccer says:

    I think it is becoming exceedingly obvious that the well spoken and mature Adu that said all the right things during his presentation press conference back in August was nothing more than a sly, deceitful and certainly immature kid. Maybe some specifics have been lost in translation or maybe he has been wrongly quoted, but the Adu that is talking to Spanish media seems desperate to leave Philly.

    In an interview with daily “AS” Adu said that a dream can take place in league play. “I love Spanish football. For now I’m just training, but it would be a dream to play in Spain. From an early age always watched MLS games. The touch football and ball speed that I love to play here. It is the best league in the world” , said the athlete.

    Adu said the Rayo Vallecano had tried their employment at the time of the Gold Cup in 2011, but the player still had a contract with the Philadelphia Union. “As the season ended in the United States, I am in this phase of testing here,” said the striker.

    http://www.tribunnews.com/2012/01/04/freddy-adu-siap-merumput-di-liga-spanyol

    http://esporte.ig.com.br/futebol/lembra-dele-freddy-adu-pode-jogar-no-futebol-espanhol/n1597512139284.html

  3. okugo must be glad someone finally recognizes his talent and rewards it with playing time

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