March 29, 2005

Donovan's coming home again: Well, so much for trying to succeed in a European league. What does this mean for the most visible face in American soccer. A coming elevation of MLS, or the silly pouting of a mama's boy.

posted by trox to soccer at 03:50 PM - 13 comments

10 weeks and he's coming back? I'm glad he's in Dallas (at least until they deal him), but still, that's not much of a commitment to the German team.

posted by rcade at 04:57 PM on March 29, 2005

it's time to give Beasley some much needed media hype. He could very well become one of the best US players of all time. Lay low in the Eredivisie for a while, have a great WC 2006, then hit pay dirt in the EPL in '07

posted by triplebogey at 06:30 PM on March 29, 2005

OK, I'll try and be provocative. Having seen Donovan play and be interviewed I am more than ever convinced that he, like many US players, does not have the defensive quality and tackling technique to make it successfully at the highest level. Club teams in Europe with their heavy workloads expect all players to do their share or the hard work through the middle and in chasing back. My observation (and also some playing experience with college level Americans) is that they have all the right skills when on the ball, but are less confident about getting it back. I have read US coaching manuals that have no chapters on tackling in them. None. Name a world-class US defender. Jeff Agoos? Don't make me laugh.

posted by owlhouse at 06:30 PM on March 29, 2005

with a few more years in the EPL, Bocanegra might be worthy?

posted by triplebogey at 06:42 PM on March 29, 2005

Donovan never got a chance... He'd be good over there if they just played him more. He's a very good player regardless of the league.

posted by StarFucker at 07:29 PM on March 29, 2005

It's already a done deal.Donovan to the Galaxy and Ruiz to Dallas.Galaxy needs needs crowd support due to Chivas USA.Plus Ruiz will opt. out after this year.GO CHIVAS USA

posted by ehoodsta at 07:50 PM on March 29, 2005

How can anyone judge from 11 games? Especially when that comes after playing the full MLS season and pretty much every US national team match in 2005. He barely got on the field in the games before the CL match, between 5 and 15 minutes of mop up time, and to judge Landon by throwing him into his first start on such a big stage is ridiculous. I think this is a big disappointment, personally I'm a huge Landon fan. though Owlhouse may have a point. Even if you give Bocanegra, he's a defender and not expected to get forward too much in the Fullham scheme, Cherundolo at Hannover 96 is another in the same mold. All the other Americans who've made any kind of impact overseas have been goalkeepers: Keller, Howard and Friedel. Damarcus is doing well so far in Eredivisie and hopefully will get a shot, probably after the World Cup, to move to a bigger league. Who else is there? McBride and Mathis have run home too. Some young kids on EPL teams but not getting on the field like Whitbread at Liverpool and Spector at ManU are also defenders though Whitbread has shown an interest in being an attacking fullback. Maybe Bobby Convey can learn the English style over a year or two with a Championship team, same for Eddie Lewis.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:06 PM on March 29, 2005

i don't follow the EPL so i don't have a clue, but how does Reyna fair (when he's not hurt that is)?

posted by goddam at 11:14 PM on March 29, 2005

It doesn't matter, but I believe McBride is still playing for Fulham.

posted by blarp at 11:45 PM on March 29, 2005

And Eddie Lewis has been in England for some time now. Reyna quietly leads his team very well but never has that "throw them on his back" play in him.

posted by Ricardo at 06:58 AM on March 30, 2005

I'm just disappointed that he's giving up (and it's his call not Bayer's) and coming home. He had the opportunity to develop but he'd rather be a big fish in a rather small pond (even if MLS is improving). Big props to DMB for embracing the challenge--he never seems to have a problem tracking back, he's a workhorse on defense, but he's too small to really get back and tackle and stop someone. All he can do is hope to harass and sneak the ball away.

posted by trox at 09:05 AM on March 30, 2005

I'm surprised to see Landon back so soon, he's always looked like a very talented and capable player whenever I've seen him. Often head and shoudler above the other players on the pitch in MLS, but it's a different game in Europe - a lot tighter, faster and more physical. Reyna did well at Wolfsburg, did well at Rangers, but has found the English Premiership something of a step too far perhaps. Hard to say given he spends most of his time with an ice pack on his leg. He is doing a very different job at Man City from his job at Rangers. DaMarcus Beasley, though, should be given some credit alright. He's been doing tremendously well in Holland. So far American players have done little to impress in Europe. Joe Max-Moore, Carlos Bocanegra and Bobby Convey haven't really stamped any real authority on the game yet. That'll change when Freddy Adu signs for Man Utd in 2007. (That last part was a joke, btw. He'll sign for Real Madrid)

posted by Duncan Mathers at 11:43 AM on April 04, 2005

Just read further up the page - agreed, the most successful imports from Stateside have been keepers. Brad Friedel is very highly regarded in England and has been for the past few seasons. He's been linked with Man Utd too. Keller is much travelled and has been solid until a few bad blunders in the last year or so; I think his time is perhaps running out which is a shame because he's a likeable guy and was a decent keeper.

posted by Duncan Mathers at 11:46 AM on April 04, 2005

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