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simon borg

30 January 5:17 pm

From the people who brought you "C.J. Sapong to Arsenal" a few weeks ago, here's a rumor that for some might prove slightly more credible.

The Football Magazine is reporting that English side "Blackburn Rovers are close to completing a deal for the one-time great hope of United States Soccer, Freddy Adu."

HACKWORTH: Adu won't be in training camp with the Union

The article says that "Rovers are currently discussing terms with the Philadelphia Union player and are hopeful of completing a deal before the end of the transfer window."

Rovers currently sit in 15th place in the English second tier, 10 points out of the promotion tussle. The club has been challenged in the attacking half of the field with just 38 goals scored, a total only better than six other clubs in the league. Earlier Wednesday, Blackburn sealed the signing of forward Anton Forrester to aid their offensive fortunes.

The Union had "no comment" on the report when contacted by MLSsoccer.com on Wednesday and Union manager John Hackworth indicated that nothing has changed when asked about the Adu situation on Tuesday.

Hackworth explained the falling out with Adu at the start of Union preseason training, indicating at the time that it had to do with salary-cap issues and a difference of opinion.

As for Freddy Adu, no word from his camp just yet. In fact, he hasn't made any public declarations or tweeted from his Twitter account since November 15.

29 January 4:12 pm

Honduran media outlets say it's a done deal.

According to multiple publications from the Central American country, the Vancouver Whitecaps are on the verge of signing 22-year-old defender Johnny Leverón. He has featured for the Honduras senior national team as well as the Catrachos' 2012 Olympic team and the Under-17 and Under-20 World Cup sides.

The Vancouver Whitecaps confirmed that Leverón is a player the club is interested in, but they stopped short of confirming reports of his imminent signing.

The articles claim that Leverón was out of contract with Honduran side Motagua, paving his way to an MLS contract.

If the signing is confirmed, it would be the latest offseason transaction involving an elite Honduran player and MLS. Walter Martínez recently joined Colorado Rapids camp in search of a contract that would allow him to play alongside former Honduran World Cup player Hendry Thomas. Arnold Peralta and Alex López have also been rumored to be moving stateside.

There are five MLS-based players on the Honduras national team roster for the 2014 World Cup qualifier against the United States on February 6 and that doesn't count Roger Espinoza, who earlier this month moved to Wigan Athletic after a lengthy career with Sporting Kansas City.

28 January 11:30 pm

It can't hurt to have too many World Cup veterans as manager Oscar Pareja looks to remake the Colorado Rapids.

Forward Walter "El Pery" Martínez (pictured above right) has joined the Western Conference squad on trial with the goal of joining fellow former Honduran national teamer Hendry Thomas. The two featured in the catrachos squad that featured at the 2010 World Cup.

The 30-year-old Martínez was long-rumored to be coming to MLS after a spell in China and he was also linked to the New England Revolution. Instead, he will look to impress Pareja and his staff in Tucson, Ariz., where the club will participate in the Desert Friendlies (live streams on MLSsoccer.com).

28 January 8:21 pm

MedioTiempo.com reports that former Peruvian international Walter Vílchez is set to sign with Chivas USA.

The defender played 45 minutes for Chivas USA in a 4-1 preseason win over UC Irvine on Saturday at the Home Depot Center and his ties to new Chivas USA manager José Luis Sánchez Solá date back to their time at Mexican side Puebla.

The report indicates that Vílchez severed ties with Peruvian side Sporting Cristal at the end of 2012 to make his move to Los Angeles and that the club will officially announce him in the coming days.

Chivas USA on Monday only confirmed that he was at the club as a trialist/guest player.

28 January 8:04 pm

It's not just MLS and lower-division clubs in the USA getting busy constructing soccer stadiums these days. Now there's even a college soccer program that is getting into the mix.

The University of Louisville, which produced the 2013 SuperDraft's No. 1 overall pick Andrew Farrell, is investigating the possibility of constructing a new facility and the school has gone as far as producing a video of what it hopes it will look like if the plan comes together (see below).

06 January 10:32 pm

Herculez Gomez was back to his goalscoring ways on the opening weekend of the new Liga MX season in Mexico.

The US international forward headed in a 26th-minute opener for Santos Laguna in their 1-1 tie against San Luis on Saturday night.

It sure helped that the San Luis goalkeeper was none other than Óscar "El Conejo" Pérez, who turns 40 next month.

Nonetheless, it can only bode well for the US national team, who open World Cup qualifying on February 6 at Honduras. Gomez started the match and played 73 minutes before being subbed out.

MLS side Houston Dynamo, who face Santos in the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinals, will also have taken note.

06 January 10:24 pm

It was one of the lowlights of the American soccer weekend: US youth international and Birmingham City defender Will Packwood suffered a leg fracture vs. Leeds United, which will rule him out for the foreseeable future. The video of the incident follows at the end of this post (warning: video is graphic).

The player himself gave an update on the surgery and his current condition via Twitter:

06 January 9:04 pm

Did you watch Sunday's 60 Minutes segment on the phenomenon that is FC Barcelona?

It's not everyday that a soccer team is profiled on one of the most revered news shows in America. What did you think of the piece by CBS News' Bob Simon? Were you expecting an interview with Barcelona's American youth player Ben Lederman or his parents?

What aspect of the piece struck you most? The names of past players on each locker? The chapel in the bowels of the stadium? The Catalunya secession angle?

Watch it again below and share your feedback in the comments section.

05 January 6:01 pm

A few weeks ago we told you how Houston Dynamo star Oscar Boniek Garcia was talking up MLS to his Honduran compatriot Alexander López. But it wasn't necessarily clear that he was trying to recruit him to BBVA Compass Stadium.

We have our confirmation, from the player himself.

López spilled the beans to the Saturday edition of Honduran outlet La Tribuna.

“Yes, it's true that I have an offer from the Houston Dynamo," he said. "I think it would be a nice experience to play in that league [MLS]. I'm not going to deny that in a way it excites me, but I'm not desperate to leave; I'm young with my future ahead of me. I've been calm about everything."

Boniek Garcia was a former Olimpia player and is very familiar with López's abilities. It helps that the Dynamo and Olimpia faced off in the group stage of the current edition of the CONCACAF Champions League.

“As a player you always look at things in the short-term and I'd like to consolidate my place on the team [Olimpia] this year, although the offer from the United States is tempting," López said. "The Houston Dynamo manager saw me when we played them in the United States. I think it would be a nice experience that other Honduran players are already living."

05 January 12:52 pm

So what do we make of this one?

There's a report that claims that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is mulling over a move for Sporting Kansas City forward C.J. Sapong. The Football Magazine goes as far as saying that a fee of nearly $5 million has been agreed upon with SKC with only personal terms left to be worked out.

When contacted by MLSsoccer.com, Sporting Kansas City had no comment on the report.

The news is so out-of-the-blue that many have already laughed it off. But work permit issues notwithstanding, why would it be considered so far-fetched? After all, the 24-year-old Sapong is one of the elite young players in MLS and captured the 2011 Rookie of the Year award. And Arsenal have made it a club policy to recruit young players.

Despite battling injury and losing his starting spot in 2012, Sapong still wound up with nine goals in 2012 MLS league action and now Sporting KC have what seemingly looks like a glut of forwards with new signing Claudio Bieler and the return of Teal Bunbury from a knee injury.

What do you make of the news? Comment below.