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American Exports

21 July 12:30 de la tarde

Brendan Rodgers had nothing to say about Clint Dempsey at Friday's press conference in Toronto, but that doesn't mean the reports in England linking Liverpool to the American have slowed down.

The newest claim from the Daily Mail is that Liverpool could yet offer midfielder Charlie Adam as part of the deal to bring Dempsey to Merseyside. Of course, no offer has been made thus far according to Fulham, so maybe the tabloids are getting a little ahead of themselves. No surprises there.

Is Liverpool the right move for Deuce? What do you think he's worth? Make your voice heard in the comment section below.

10 July 4:15 de la tarde

Remember that age-old mantra reminding you to be comfortable in your own skin? Well, a couple of US national teamers went a step further.

Men's captain Carlos Bocanegra and women's superstar Abby Wambach were not camera-shy when ESPN The Magazine's Body Issue came calling. Both Bocanegra and Wambach shed some skin – and some visual insight – into what the soccer bodies look like from two of America's best.

The body of a soccer player, like any athlete, is defined as much by its impressive and imposing physicality as it is its ability to withstand the daily beating it takes.

"When you play soccer, you are going to get cut, you are going to get bruised," explains Wambach. "If sitiches have to happen, if staples have to come, that's just part of the game – just take it."

Also included in the fourth annual publication are the NFL's Rob Gronkowski, the WNBA's Candace Parker and the NBA's Tyson Chandler, among others.

 

10 July 11:33 de la mañana

Brendan Rodgers has high hopes for Liverpool – and he's wasting no time trying to reinforce his squad for that pursuit.

The newly appointed manager is eager to make his first signing since taking over the Reds on June 1, and one of his first targets happens to be US international Clint Dempsey.

According to a report by the English newspaper The Mirror, Rodgers and the Liverpool front office are set to bid £7.5 million in an attempt to pry the English Premier League's fourth-leading scorer in 2011-12 away from Fulham's Craven Cottage and north to Anfield. 

A deal could be completed as early as Wednesday, if you believe the report, as Liverpool hope to lock up Deuce before their trip to the United States next week. 

If the transfer goes down, what do you think of the move?

10 June 8:48 de la tarde

It's been a whirlwind few months for Terrence Boyd (above, credit: MexSport), and to cap it all off, he will soon get his first taste of top-flight soccer.

A report in Austria publication sport10.at (in German) suggests that Boyd's long-rumored move from Borussia Dortmund to Rapid Vienna is all but sealed. He is set to fly to Austria and finalize the deal following the United States' World Cup qualifier at Guatemala on Tuesday.

He is quoted as saying to sport10.at, "The league is very attractive and is highly-regarded in Germany. In my opinion a young player can advance a lot in this league."

In addition to playing top-flight soccer, Boyd will get to test his wits in the Europa League, by virtue of Rapid's second-place finish in the 2011-12 Austrian Bundesliga. The club was also a recent stop for a pair of D.C. United players – Hamdi Salihi and Branko Boskovic.

Boyd joins the 32-time Austrian champions on the back of a 20-goal season for Dortmund's reserve team, which plays in the German fourth division. His breakout year, movement, and ability to trouble defenders with his physicality earned him the attention of Jurgen Klinsmann and the US coaching staff. 

Though he hasn't played top-flight soccer yet, he made his national team debut in the USA's 1-0 victory over Italy in February and scored two goals in the ultimately disappointing Olympic qualifying campaign. He came on as a substitute in the Americans' 3-1 World Cup qualifying win over Antigua and Barbuda, cap-tying him to the United States and bringing his total to four caps.

Is Boyd's move to Austria the right step forward for the 21-year-old? How do you think he will cope with the pressure of top-flight professional soccer? As is the case with young players, it's too early to tell, but all the signs point to a bright future for the young man.

10 June 7:05 de la tarde

Former US men's national team coach Bob Bradley has enjoyed a wildly successful start to his career in charge of Egypt's national team, winning the hearts of the Egyptian people and plenty of games.

Things looked a little less rosy, though, in Bradley's second World Cup qualifier, away to Guinea. Alhassane Bangoura netted an improbable equalizer for the 10-man West African side in the 88th minute, and Egypt looked headed for a tie that would've made the competition for a coveted spot in the final round of qualifying all that much difficult.

Egypt forward Mohamed Salah had other ideas though and scored in the fifth minute of stoppage time to hand Egypt a 3-2 win and put them firmly on top of their group.

It's still a long road to the World Cup for The Pharaohs – they still have four more group games, and if they keep it up, they'll face a do-or-die two-legged playoff to get to Brazil. Still, Guinea away is at least on paper the most dificult task Bradley's men will face until that playoff, and though they are not in action again until March 2013, they will certainly be feeling good about their chances.

Can Bradley take Egypt to the World Cup? If both Egypt and the US make it, how cool would it be to see the ex-US coach take on his former side? Weigh in with your comments beow.

29 May 1:39 de la tarde

Auteur d’un magnifique but samedi dernier contre l’Écosse, Michael Bradley s’est une fois plus fait remarquer positivement par les nombreux clubs qui le convoitent.

Toujours sous contrat au Chievo Vérone, l’international américain peut partir pour une somme que les médias italiens estiment entre 2,5 et 4,5 millions d’euros (3,2 à 5,6 millions de dollars). Le directeur sportif du club déclare d’ailleurs que « la possibilité de le voir sous le maillot de Chievo la saison prochaine est vraiment faible ».

Le milieu de terrain est cité dans plusieurs clubs italiens. La Gazzetta dello Sport mentionne le nom de Palerme, mais ceux qui reviennent le plus souvent sont l’AS Rome et Naples. Toutefois, il pourrait bien prendre la direction d’Anderlecht, qui pense à remplacer l’international argentin Lucas Biglia, annoncé en partance.

L’information annoncée en Italie par Tuttosport et en Belgique par Het Laatste Nieuws est relayée par de nombreux médias. Le site officiel du championnat de Belgique (l’équivalent de mlssoccer.com) mentionne même que son agent dément les contacts avec Rome et Naples, et confirme des discussions de longue date avec Anderlecht.

En signant chez le champion de Belgique, Bradley y deviendrait coéquipier d’un autre international américain, Sacha Kljestan.

25 May 4:02 de la tarde

The rumors have been swirling around about a possible -- no, probable move away from Fulham for USMNT star Clint Dempsey this summer. The player himself has been very vocal about his desire to play in the Champions League

"I've always said I'm grateful for everything Fulham has done for me," he said recently. "Some of the best memories I have in soccer have been there. But the fact remains that I want to play in Champions League. I want to play at the highest level possible."

That could become a reality this summer, if a big club comes along to pluck the EPL's 4th top scorer this season. All it will take, according to The Guardian, is £15 million ($24.5m). The English paper rates Dempsey #42 out of the top 50 transfer targets this summer, just behind Chelsea defender David Luiz and just ahead of Benfica midfielder Axel Witsel.

Is that about where Dempsey sits in the pecking order? Probably, though, I think I speak for most US national team fans when I say, someone is going to get a deal if they pick him up for just £15 million this summer. 

11 May 11:55 de la mañana

This week, US internationals pose all over Europe for photos, a soccer journalist examines a bizzarre photo of Arshavin, and Charlie Davies takes FIFA 12 to a whole new level.

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US International Kljestan won his first trophy, as Anderlecht clinched the Belgian League title. This photo is very, well, euro. We like it. Congrats Sacha.

Former D.C. United striker Davies is back in France with Sochaux. He is causing all kinds of damage with his brother, over a video game.

Soccer journalist and presenter of the Best Soccer show, Davis gave three alternatives for photo captions which should have been used in this photo of Arshavin celebrating. Hilarious!

Gooch is looking suave in this magazine shoot for the latest edition of Men's Health in Portugal. Usually that kind of glance strikes fear into the opposition, but don't worry he's not angry, the US center back is in the zone for his close-up.

Martino is a thoughtful husband and a wonderful color commentator on NBC Sports Network. (P.S. check out his Twitter avatar, was this the result of his shaving mishap?!)

If you see a soccer tweet that should be included in our top five, be sure to send it to the @MLS_Insider!

08 May 1:50 de la tarde

We haven't heard much about Bobby Burling in recent months, not since the onetime San Jose Earthquakes defender was selected by the Montreal Impact in last fall's expansion draft and declined to join the new club.

The 27-year-old obviously has plenty of playing years left, but for now he's been doing some traveling, including stopping in to visit his friend Sacha Kljestan.

So is Kljestan -- or should we call him Superman? -- going to help Burling get a gig somewhere in Belgium? 

07 May 2:24 de la tarde

As you can see above, Clint Dempsey is a company man, even if there is significant doubt as to his long-term future with Fulham.

Dempsey scored his 17th goal of the EPL campaign on Sunday – a total that trails only Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney and Sergio Agüero – by curling a free kick into the top corner in the London club's 2-1 victory against Sunderland.

And with the silly season rapidly approaching, media on the other side of the pond are already rounding into mid-summer form, linking the American striker with a move to Arsenal – potentially as a replacement for van Persie should the lure of Manchester City or another big-money suitor draw the Dutchman away.

Should that come off, it's safe to say the Gunners are going to have a serious uptick in interest in the US. Then again, Arsenal's Champions League credentials aren't yet secured either, leaving some doubt about their summer strategy and their ability to attract the big names needed to return to the highest rung on the European ladder.

Personally, I'd love to see an American ply their trade in La Liga, and this article makes a pretty convincing argument that Malaga wouldn't be a bad destination for Deuce.

Where would you do if you were Dempsey? Let us know what you think in the comment section below.