Daily news roundups

News roundup: Dre stays, LD en Leon, soccer coaches in Philly, more

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Philadelphia Union

Andre Blake has reportedly signed a new, multi-year contract with the Union, making him one of the highest-paid keepers in the league. So much for Europe.

Sam Stejskal reports that, contrary to rumors, the Union are not in the market for an early first-round SuperDraft pick.

Sigh. Freddy Adu is set to join his 14th club in 13 years… heading for the Swedish third division.

MLS

Portland Timbers have made an offer for Columbus winger Justin Meram.

Orland has their South American No. 10: 19-year-old Paraguayan Josue Colman. That seems to indicate that Sacha Kljestan is slotted for his old No. 8 role in the middle of the field.

The MLS Player Combine is in full swing. Lots of good stories from Orlando here. Plus: Highlights for game 1 and game 2 of action yesterday.

Former U.S. U-20 star Rubio Rubin is weighing offers from both MLS and Liga MX.

USL

Indy Eleven officially moves to USL, spurring the now 33-team league to realign conferences once again.

U.S. Soccer

The USSF presidential election is all the talk at the United Soccer Coaches convention in Philadelphia this week.

Who exactly votes in the presidential election anyway?

Around the globe

Landon Donovan officially moves to Club Leon. Okay.

In honor of (post) MLK Day and the sacrifices of so many people for civil rights, a look at the footballers who withstood incredible racial abuse to break down barriers in England.

Highlight of the day

Y’all must watch this Ligue 1 ref absolutely losing his mind in the PSG-Nantes match over the weekend. He not only kicks Nantes player Diego Carlos, but sends him off for… being kicked? The ref has been suspended indefinitely, hallelujah.

31 Comments

  1. Blake signing a new contract is (for me) the best news so far in this boring, watching-paint-dry, Union offseason. We have a stellar keeper on board, and the new contract means that if/when an offer does come in (and permit willing), we can bank some good $$$.
    .
    Of course, we already cleared books of a lot of $$$ PLUS the GAM/TAM injection and have still spent $#!t, so that may not matter.
    .
    I’m finding myself increasingly surprised how angry I’m getting at this team for being COMPLETELY silent this window on any personnel moves.

  2. John P. O'Donnell Jr says:

    There a certain minute of eyes wondering when I read in honor of MLK day…..English soccer. My father was there as young marine because they thought there would be riots, afterward he said it changed him forever. I asked him what he thought was the thing he got the most out of it. Quite simply he said “black people just want the right to live their life in peace just like everybody else”. My mom (a public school teacher who worked in South Philly) looked at me right after he told me this (I think I was 8 or 9) and told me to remember “assholes come in every color, know the person for who they are”. Right then all I thought was my mom said asshole. But to this day it’s the best simple advice I’ve ever gotten.

    • Awesome anecdote, thanks for sharing. Included the English story because, while soccer came of age in the U.S. after the color barrier had already been broken in other American sports, black soccer players in Europe had to fight (and still have to in many countries) for justice on the pitch. MLK’s fight is universal, not just American.

    • +1,000,000 (although right now s**thole is probably a more relevant term). If only there was some way for a certain segment of the country to learn a lesson from team sports where people of all backgrounds work together for a common goal.

  3. Blake great keeper and one of Union’s only players with any value. I’m happy to pay the guy and have him on the team but… it’s certainly not a MONEYBALL approach.

    • I thought this through in a comment elsewhere… Selling Blake to Europe makes a ton of sense. He’s worth $1 million (800,000 Euros) according to transfermarkt. With MLS getting a third of that, however, it’s got to be a tough call for Ernie to make a sale. Club would essentially be losing $300,000 in value. If MLS is on the verge of allowing clubs to keep 100% of transfer fees, that’s an investment that could suddenly pay off in a significant way for the Union. Keeping Blake might be the smart play in the long run. (Not to mention the benefit of having one of the best keepers in the league)

      • Garber has purposely set it up to make it of little value for teams to sell players outside of MLS by hoarding the transfer fees at the FO.
        .
        Re-upping Blake honestly is the smartest approach by the Union though, make sure he’s signed on so that when he does move we get some $$$ back.
        .
        I do hope they revamp the transfer payments to the teams (it sounds like they are planning that). MLS is losing out on a major funding source by limiting the ability to sell players.

      • Yeah, to sell him now would be like selling your home in buyers market. Especially if you know the market is going to change soon. The current system has got to make some players wary of coming here if they think the league will never sell them up.

    • they don’t want to sell because if they had money then people would expect them to actually sign some players

  4. As far as the Blake news, this is great for us. But remember that he was also kinda stuck. Your country has to be in the top 50 of FIFA World Rankings in order to secure a work visa in England. Jamaica is not in the top 50, so England was out. Apparently, the recent rumors were coming out of the UK.
    .
    So, he’s here until some other country with less-weird rules bids on him.

    • There are a lot of other countries with pretty good leagues outside of England, though. I had a hard time believing he was a serious target of PL sides, but thought he’d be an obvious target for Germany, France, Portugal or the Netherlands.(Though to be honest, I’d take Blake over both Karius and Mignolet for Liverpool….) I really don’t think Stewart was telling the truth when he said he hasn’t received any calls for Blake. No way other clubs weren’t at least kicking the tires.

    • Not sure why people only talk about him moving to England. I’m sure their were many solid mid-table clubs in Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Holland, etc. (all countries without the UK work permit rules) that would have been happy to have him and that would be better platforms than MLS for gaining exposure to the bigger European clubs. He wouldn’t have been the first CONCACAF GK to go this route, and a lot less red tape than a move to a club in the UK.

      EDIT: Pete beat me to this comment! Also, ES only said the Union received no formal offers for Blake. He never said they received no interest. ES probably set his value so high that no one tabled a formal offer.

      • Great minds, Union42…. Good catch on the wording of Stewart’s comments. I think you’re right.

      • I was only pointing out that the most recent rumors were coming from England. I’m in agreement on all points.

  5. If Blake still wants to go to Europe, he will. His signing doesn’t necessarily mean he will be our GK for the foreseeable future, it just means that we agreed to give him a healthy raise for this season in exchange for the guarantee that we don’t lose him for nothing when his old contract would have expired next winter. A smart move, and hopefully the first domino.

  6. Ok so the Blake signing kind of shows what their plan going forward is.
    *
    Looks like signing Blake and if the Rumors are true, sign a Vet Centerback to anchor the back line. They probably feel that thier first priority is to let less goals in. and that will mean X amount of points this season. They have Tons of Random Wingers and maybe they are hopeful one or two will stick. Get a Left Back and a #10 and they will try and make a run for a playoff spot.
    *
    Nobody in the League can compete with Atlanta and Toronto so the entire league is starting at -6 points and competing for spots 3-6 in the playoffs.
    *
    We can still sell Blake down the line. He still has flaws in his game. If Jamaica gets onto the top 50 and the league lets teams get more money when they sell players, It will be worth it for the team to sell Blake. As it was right now it was probably worth more to the Union to play Blake all year and have him walk out for free, than to sell him. Now we get the best of the both worlds Blake wise and hopefully didn’t cripple the rest of the team financially in the process.

    • A Gaggle of Random Wingers says:

      I’m not sure why, but I am fascinated by your capitalization of “Tons of Random Wingers”. It speaks to me on a visceral level. It explains the Union so simply and beautifully. It is so Union.

      I think I might need to make it my new handle, if you don’t mind, except with a slightly more union-esque facade.

    • “Nobody in the League can compete with Atlanta and Toronto so the entire league is starting at -6 points and competing for spots 3-6 in the playoffs.”

      If that is the case, does anyone blame the Union for not dropping $10 million?

      Only issue is they missed the memo that RBNY was dropping $5million and $10million on two players.

      So now RBNY is also starting +3 on the union.

      Oh and they traded their #10 to OCSC, but he is playing the 8, as OCSC signed a new #10.

      The gaggle of Wingers, really wasn’t an awful plan. If the rest of the league hadn’t followed Atlanta’s spending spree this winter.

      If we take the two rumors as true. The Polish CB and the #10 from Chile and re-signing Blake. Not an awful team when compared to the East last year. You have two ball playing CBs to make up for the lack of distribution from Blake. Get a creator with upside as a 10. And hope that two of your gaggle of wingers are hot at any moment.

      Problem is Novak, decided to phone a friend. Gone is the Polish kid. And LAFC decided to splash a bit more cash.

      Maybe there is a plan, and they got unlucky?

      Maybe we can petition for 3 bonus points for winning the social media shield?

  7. I think we all need to start coming to the harsh realization that this team is basically what you see before you. Most people here (from the comments anyway) seem to know we need a DP top class
    MLS #10, an upgraded offensively gifted winger, and a LB upgrade. Those would be the least of what we need just to compete with the rest of the league.
    .
    How, in a week, will we have even just those 3 pieces added? The answer is that it’s not happening. That means if they are added, it won’t be until after camp opens at best.
    .
    Pretty sure we’ll be sitting in the same spot next year.

    • I can’t imagine they aren’t going to get a real #10. I mean, they can’t possibly think the fanbase would put up with that. Hell, if they don’t get a #10, I won’t attend a single match this season. I might not even watch most of the matches on TV.

      And at this rate we’d be fortunate to be sitting in the same spot next year. The league continues to improve each season.

      • I’m sure they are lining up some Academy kid right now to play the 10. We’re saved!
        .
        (I truly hope my sarcasm came through loud and clear.)

      • So here’s the question, what level of a #10 would you be satisfied with?

      • Nguyen would have been an acceptable level. He’s not a world-beater, but he’s a natural 10 with experience and the ability to play the spot. On top of that, he’s affordable.
        .
        Odd that we wouldn’t be in play for him, but maybe they already have someone in mind.

    • Ha ha. Emre Can is”free” at the end of the season, too. And if the whole Sanchez/United/City sweepstakes keep the poor Chilean at the Emirates, Union could make an offer. He’s a free transfer at season’s end, too. 🙂

      Could you imagine Mata in MLS? Wow. If only…

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