Flexibility

Fredy

Sunday Night's 4-3-3 Was Different But Not A Lot Different

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The depth of the Sounder's 2012 roster allows Sigi Schmid tactical flexibility. Last night in Frisco, Texas, we got a taste of just how much flexibility. Normally the Sounders play a modified 4-4-2 formation that is affectionately known as Sigi's Arrow. Last night the team lined up in a modified 4-3-3 and by the end of the game was actually playing a formation closer to a 4-5-1 as fatigue set in.

Brad Evans New Role

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Brad Evans play as a right mid started a little while ago. It was due to the strong play of Andy Rose and the benching of Fredy Montero and then just continued, except for those times when he was used at right back or at center mid. He's even popped up at left mid for a bit. There was a theory, one I really wanted to be true because I like fun tactical stuff and I like how Evans plays, that he was now being used as a roving midfielder.

Liverpool

Reds Eye Sturridge Bid

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Sky Sports understands Liverpool is lining up a move for Chelsea's Daniel Sturridge before Friday's transfer deadline.
Reds boss Brendan Rodgers has identified Sturridge as the man to replace Andy Carroll who left on loan for West Ham on Thursday.
Sturridge provides greater attacking flexibility due to his ability to play in a wide position as well as in a central striker role.

The Charlie Adam Curve

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The past three league matches have seen Charlie Adam paired with three different midfield partners, with each new pairing leading to a slight shift in the focus of Adam's game. From a largely offensive effort when paired with Lucas against Manchester City through to a job as the deepest midfielder against Queens Park Rangers, it's meant an interesting—and surprisingly successful—progression.

Major League Soccer

Pappa leaves Chicago for Heerenveen

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Plans change, and the Chicago Fire's Marco Pappa is now a member of Eredivisie club Heerenveen rather than waiting until after the Major League Soccer season. "This was a very difficult decision to make, however, we feel it is the best move for the club and the player at this time," Chicago president Javier Leon said in a press statement.

Pappa's transfer from Fire to Heerenveen takes immediate effect

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If the Chicago Fire are to reach the playoffs and go on a postseason run this season, they will have to do so without Marco Pappa.

The Guatemalan midfielder's transfer to Dutch club Heerenveen has been expedited, and he will leave the Fire with immediate effect. The Fire had originally planned on sending Pappa to Heerenveen following the conclusion of the MLS season after the transfer had been agreed upon earlier this month.

USA star decides against MLS return

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With rumors swirling about a possible return to Major League Soccer, a source close to Carlos Bocanegra told MLSsoccer.com on Thursday that the American defender will remain in Europe, for at least the 2012 season.

Just a few weeks ago, while Bocanegra was visiting the States to take part in MLB All-Star festivities, Boca spoke candidly about a possible return, stating he was '100% considering a return to MLS.

DC United finds rhythm to win 3-1

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Flexibility wins games and the best way to get it is to blend energy with savvy. DC United Coach Ben Olsen put out a nicely blended squad against Toronto and its savvy members made the exact right adjustments to a hard working opposing side which had clogged the middle and kept the game mostly in United's end.

DC United finds rhythm to win 3-1

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Flexibility wins games and the best way to get it is to blend energy with savvy. DC United Coach Ben Olsen put out a nicely blended squad against Toronto and its savvy members made the exact right adjustments to a hard working opposing side which had clogged the middle and kept the game mostly in United's end.

Sounders v Santos Laguna Formation And Tactics

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If there's one thing that is most surprising tactically from Seattle Sounders FC's first leg win over Santos Laguna it is that David Estrada played quite high. We know this from sidereal's average position maps. His average space was similar to the space of a target forward. This does not mean he was a target forward.

Union confirms Le Toux trade

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The Philadelphia Union confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that Sebastien Le Toux has been traded to Vancouver.

In return, the club receives an undisclosed amount of allocation money.

Union head coach Peter Nowak said in the announcement, "While this decision wasn't easy, we are confident that the allocation money we receive will provide the flexibility for us to compile the best possible roster for 2012 and beyond.

Big Clubs Are Interested In Osvaldo Alonso: A Test In Sounders Fans' Faith

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Osvaldo Alonso recently suggested some Premiership teams might be interested in acquiring his services. Unsurprisingly, being as he is a professional soccer player, he is open to this possibility. None of this should really come as news.

The question is: How much concern should this cause us as Seattle Sounders fans, who clearly want our team to have as many highly talented players as is possible?

Hot and Cold So Far In MLS Offseason

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Sporting KC has done well so far this offseason. (Getty Images)

Well, it is mid-December. The Christmas trees are up and the snow is falling in some places around the country. The Re-Entry Drafts have come and gone for the 19 MLS clubs. Teams are constantly making moves this offseason at times more moves than it seems like ever before.

Which potential DP do you want to see in MLS in 2012?

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Omar Bravo is gone. David Beckham could be gone. Nicolas Anelka isn't coming.

The Designated Player landscape in MLS is changing and evolving, and even with teams having the flexibility to go after younger DP options or giving players like league veteran Shalrie Joseph a DP deal, the lure of landing a big-name, marketable superstar is still prevalent.

Chicago Fire

Fire announce Marco Pappa transferred to SC Heerenveen now; not later

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The Chicago Fire announced on Thursday that midfielder Marco Pappa will be transferred to Dutch side SC Heerenveen immediately as opposed to at the end of the season.

The idea that a European club would essentially wait half a season to get a player seemed a bit farfetched at the time. We may never know if this was the plan all along or if Heerenveen made a last-minute offer that the Men in Red couldn't turn down.

Fire loan out playmaker Grazzini

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Photo by ISIphotos.com

The curious case of Sebastian Grazzini and the Chicago Fire has come to a resolution.

The Fire loaned Grazzini to Argentine club Atletico de Rafaela on Friday. The terms of the deal were not disclosed. The Fire had exercised their option on the Argentine playmaker for a second year at the end of June after a bit of a contract dispute, which, according to the Chicago Sun Times, was started over Grazzini misunderstanding the original terms of his deal with the club.

Clint Dempsey

What are we lacking then?

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Clint Dempsey in happier times. Oh...

All this "we must have four new players" type demand people are on about. Is it really so desperate?

If you go to the club's squad page and have a look, there's not really all that much to worry about.

The defence is still pretty stacked.

What are we lacking then?

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Clint Dempsey in happier times. Oh...

All this "we must have four new players" type demand people are on about. Is it really so desperate?

If you go to the club's squad page and have a look, there's not really all that much to worry about.

The defence is still pretty stacked.

A fox in the box and a toad in the hole

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Interesting comments from Martin Jol regarding his use of Clint Dempsey (see Hammyend.com for more).

Essentially he's saying that Dempsey is operating as more of a classic 10, now.

This is interesting. From our unusually lofted positions high in Johnny Haynes, Toby and I spent a bit of time on Saturday wondering where everyone was supposed to be playing.

A fox in the box and a toad in the hole

Craven Cottage Newsround at related • 0 views

Interesting comments from Martin Jol regarding his use of Clint Dempsey (see Hammyend.com for more).

Essentially he's saying that Dempsey is operating as more of a classic 10, now.

This is interesting. From our unusually lofted positions high in Johnny Haynes, Toby and I spent a bit of time on Saturday wondering where everyone was supposed to be playing.

D.C. United

DC United finds rhythm to win 3-1

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Flexibility wins games and the best way to get it is to blend energy with savvy. DC United Coach Ben Olsen put out a nicely blended squad against Toronto and its savvy members made the exact right adjustments to a hard working opposing side which had clogged the middle and kept the game mostly in United's end.

DC United finds rhythm to win 3-1

American Soccer News at related • 0 views

Flexibility wins games and the best way to get it is to blend energy with savvy. DC United Coach Ben Olsen put out a nicely blended squad against Toronto and its savvy members made the exact right adjustments to a hard working opposing side which had clogged the middle and kept the game mostly in United's end.

FM Scouting: Hamdi Salihi

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While I'm relatively certain that most dedicated followers of MLS will know what United are getting with the likes of Maicon Santos and Danny Cruz, there's still an element of mystery surrounding the acquisitions from the mid-tier Euro-leagues. Most of us see precious little from Swiss or Austrian clubs outside of perhaps the odd Europa League highlight.

Seattle Sounders

Mauro Rosales, Alvaro Fernandez Receive Green Cards

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Adrian Hanauer's international roster slot math gets easier today as two of Seattle Sounders FC's Designated Players receive their U.S. Green Cards per team release. This grants them legal permanent residency status in the United States and also means that per MLS rules they no longer count as "internationals.

Right Back Depth Filled By Utility Men

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One of the issues with depth charts and roster math is how to place players who can fill many roles. With Adam Johansson in Qatar for the opening of training camp, Seattle Sounders coach Sigi Schmid gets to test a bunch of different options at the right back role. One thing quickly clear when asked was who the leader in that role is:

Obviously Zach Scott is somebody who can play there.

Alvaro Fernandez Agent Says Palermo Interesting If Contract Offer Right

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Every single agent should say that their player, particularly one of Alvaro Fernandez' quality, is interested in playing for Palermo, a team in a better league for more money. That Fernandez' agent did so is not a surprise. Palermo is a mid-table team in Serie A this season already on its third coach.

Miguel Montano Officially Joins Montreal Impact

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It has been a near foregone conclusion ever since he was first loaned out several months ago, but Miguel Montano officially signed with the Montreal Impact on Wednesday. The Seattle Sounders did not receive compensation for Montano, but GM Adrian Hanauer noted that his loan last year gave the team the flexibility to sign Sammy Ochoa.

The Rest

Fitness Evaluations First

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The first component of any extended camp with the National Team is a fitness evaluation. Typically they consist of two elements: a medical (or physical, as we commonly call it), and testing.
The testing portion is broken up into three areas, and is designed to measure speed, strength and flexibility, and aerobic capacity.

Galaxy Thoughts

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Random thoughts as I head out to LA Galaxy training today

* If David Junior Lopes works out, he could really give the Galaxy some flexibility. Part of the problem for the Galaxy is that certain players have to play in certain positions. Last year, Sean Franklin was able to play in the midfield sometimes while AJ De La Garza could play in middle, out wide or take a breather for a game or two.

Revolution Transfers 2012: New England Signs Bjorn Runstrom

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The New England Revolution have announced today, via press release, that they have put pen to paper and signed Swedish forward Bjorn Runstrom. Runstrom, who trialed with the Revolution in Arizona during the preseason and scored one goal in three appearances, will be added to the roster pending receipt of his P-1 Visa and his International Transfer Certificate.

Sporting KC acquires Convey

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Photo by Don Feria/ISIphotos.com

Sporting Kansas City's week of wheeling and dealing has ended with an exclamation point.

The club acquired Bobby Convey from the San Jose Earthquakes in exchange for an international roster slot.Â

Convey, who did not have his contract option picked up by San Jose after this past season, was part of the initial list of players available in the MLS Re-Entry Draft, but that is no longer the case after Sporting KC stepped up to trade for the veteran left winger.