Dec 21, 2007

Friday Footie Link List, Dec. 21, 2007

If there's one thing there is too much of in today's world it's awards and awards ceremonies. I'm not just talking soccer, either. The damn things are everywhere. At my day job, it seems I spend half the year preparing for one awards "gala" or another, just so the publishing monkeys can get their jollies and pad their bottom lines. So why do I care about the US Soccer Federation's accolades, as reported on American Soccer Daily and elsewhere? Because I have an agenda: I want soccer to become more popular in this country and will support programs that help it to attract attention. Even cheap ploys such as awards. Plus, I happen to think these guys genuinely deserve it (unlike the over-hyped stars who win FIFA World Player of the Year and Ballon d'Or awards or worse yet fat cats from various parts of world industry). Clint Dempsey and Abby Wambach were named USSF's 2007 Male and Female Athletes of the Year, with Heerenveen's Michael Bradley and UCLA Bruins striker Lauren Cheney receiving Young Male and Female of the Year accolades, respectively. I find it hard to argue with any of these choices. Congratulations to the winners. In case you're wondering, 50%of the voting was supplied by fan voting at, with the remaining votes registered by representatives of the USSF and members of the soccer media (I was not polled).

Speaking of under-appreciated, underpaid U.S. professional players, WV Hooligan has the definitive list of the latter. I hate the blatant displays of new wealth put on by some U.S. (and European) professional athletes just as much as the next guy, but this is ridiculous: $30K per annum for Jeff Larentowicz, a starting midfielder on MLS Cup Runners-up New England Revolution? Thirty-three grand for Kansas City Wizards second leading scorer Scott Sealy? Totally absurd. An unfair. I'm sure the league and the owners can afford to get everybody on a minimum salary of, say, $100k? In the meantime, expect MLS players to continue to seek opportunities--any opportunities, even with a fourth-division German side--any chance they get.

The UEFA Champions League and UEFA Cup knockout round has just been drawn. Soccer Source will have its predictions soon (here's a sneak preview: Liverpool and Celtic have no chance). In the meantime, fans are asked to make their own predictions at

There have been reports of German Bundesliga clubs, Liverpool and others coming to the U.S. next summer. Now, Sideline Views is reporting one of (if not the) biggest French clubs is mulling such a move as well. I love the idea of European and Latin American clubs playing exhibitions against MLS sides, but I wonder at what point it becomes over-saturated. I would love to see any of these games, but I might just be in the minority. I can't see the casual fan being able (or even wanting) to keep pace.

Steady scoop supplier Steve Goff reports that Bryan Arguez (a D.C. United first-round draft pick from last year) is going on trial at Hertha Berlin, the same club that once employed another physical U.S. defender by the name of Tony Sanneh.

1 comment:

  1. Celtic has a chance. I hope you're hungry, you're going to eat your words! (alright, so it may not be a good chance... at all, but cmon, give the bhoys their shot)