The Offside - MLS Archives for January 2010

The Curious Case of Freddie Ljungberg

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Perhaps no player in recent MLS history has stirred up more emotions in fans than the Swedish superstar, Freddie Ljungberg. Freddie inspires awe, confusion, respect, disgust, and makes us ask ourselves many questions.

Is he the poor man's David Beckham?

Is he the unlikeable David Beckham?

MLS Callups Are Only A Good Start.

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Word has now spread that USMNT coach Bob Bradley will be including 20 rising MLS stars in his 24 man January camp. Aimed at preparing the Nats for their coming friendly against Chile, the camp is the first to have such a heavy MLS presence. As could be expected with such an announcement, the MLS blogsphere immediately erupted with praise and assertions that this reflects an improving league.

The Re- Entry Draft Doesn’t Matter.

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Among all the fanfare leading up to Stage 2 of the Re- Entry Draft and the various predictions made as to who would lay claim to whom, we have overlooked one vital question: what difference does it make?

The bottom line is that, while there may be some big names on the list of players available for signing, the Re- Entry Draft is, by definition, a way of allowing players who have been waived by their teams or whose contracts weren't renewed a way back into the league.

Peter Vermes is On the Hunt.

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Kansas City's coach Peter Vermes announced on Wednesday that, despite conflicts with three potential players, his club used all twelve of its discovery claims on Monday. As it continues discussions with various players, the club has continued to scout in Europe, the Caribbean, and the NCAA.

Selling U.S. Soccer since 1994

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A fascinating interview in today's Herlad Scotland showed why Alexei Lalas just may be the best ambassador for US soccer today. Whenever Lalas speaks you get a real sense of his passion and love for not only the USMNT, but also the MLS and the growing passion for the game in our country.

A few highlights from the article include:

- After bragging about the success of Maurice Edu, Stuart Holden and Clint Dempsey, Lalas was asked who might be next to leave MLS and thrive in Europe.

And… Nothing Happened.

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Round One of the Re-Entry draft ended with only two of the 35 eligible players being signed to a club. Looks like we're going to have to wait until next Wednesday to see the fates of JPA, Schelotto, and Hejduk, among the 30 other players available.

Until then, we can discuss the two who were chosen: Joseph Ngwenya and Aaron Hohlbein.

Sifting Through the Re-Entry Draft.

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On Wednesday, one of the many brainchildren of our new CBA will come to fruition in the form of MLS's first ever Re-Entry Draft. Aimed at increasing player movement and affording players more job security, the proccess essentially serves to keep players who have been waived or have not had their contracts renewed employed.

On Becoming The Top League In The World.

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He's said it at the Supporters' Summit and regarding the 2022 World Cup;Don Garber intends for our league to be not just a great league, but one of the best in the world. Is it possible?

Let's be straight with it: Sure, this is possible, but it'll take time. Until we see Garber's plans for this, we can only assume the timetable which we assume the league will follow now: a slow ascent with an eventual breakthrough into the American mainstream.