American Exports Notepad: Plaudits for Holden, Rolfe; where's Mo love?
AMSTERDAM — The time has come again to clear out the old American Exports scribble pad, just to make sure you don't miss anything between the games.
The Honor Roll
A pair of Americans picked up awards over the last week, with the big prize going to injured Bolton midfielder Stuart Holden. The former Houston Dynamo star was voted Player of the Year by the Bolton Wanderers Supporters Association.
In his first full season abroad, Holden notched two goals and two assists in 26 games, and was the second-leading tackler in the EPL when injured for the remainder at Manchester United last in mid-March.
Over in Denmark, Aalborg BK attacker Chris Rolfe won SAS Liga Goal of the Month for April, taking 39 percent of the vote for his cracker at FC Nordsjælland two rounds back. It was his first goal in just over a year, most of which was spent battling a pesky hamstring nag.
Rolfe did worry fans this past weekend by limping out of AaB's win over FC Midtjylland after 68 productive minutes, but he told MLSsoccer.com on Tuesday that the knock was only temporary.
Speaking of Holden's week, the Wanderer also publicly came to the defense of US teammate Maurice Edu, who's been taking plenty of stick from segments of the Rangers fan base lately.
The midfielder has been hearing some groans from the Ibrox faithful and club message boards have lit up with griping over his recent form. This all prompted Holden to jump to Edu's defense.
"Every footballer is going to come under criticism at some point in their career, but Mo has faced adversity before in his career and is more than equipped to handle that," he told Scottish daily Record. "I'm sure if the fans back him, he'll get back to his best before too long. It means everything to him to be valued by the supporters so he'll be really determined now to get them back on side. ... I know for a fact every time he puts on the Rangers shirt, he gives it 110 percent. He loves that club."
Will Rangers fans pay heed to an Aberdeen native? We are likely to find out on Saturday — Hearts come to town and Edu has started 18 straight for boss Walter Smith.
Silly Season Appetizers
With the summer fast approaching, the transfer talk has already begun heating up. A few of our American Exports have been generating that seasonal buzz, most recently when Scottish tabloid Express suddenly hyped serious Edu interest from Turkish title chasers Trabzonspor on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, several Swedish papers reported that Rangers were in the house to watch Örebro midfield engine Alejandro Bedoya on Sunday. Late last week, England's Mirror added Schalke to the reported crowd around Aston Villa keeper Brad Friedel. As always, though, have your grain of salt handy when dealing with the UK rags.
Finally, US Under-20 ace Kelyn Rowe has moved on from a Rennes trial to one at Bundesliga side FC Köln.
Several Americans are busy chasing down the league title, a domestic cup or both. It just seemed like a good time to take full inventory of who has won what across the pond to date. We are only counting top-notch silver here, so no lower-division championships and only cups that send a team into Europe.
The players listed with asterisks have the possibly to add to their totals over the next few weeks, while Anderlecht's Sacha Kljestan and Duisburg's David Yelldell have shots at joining the list.
7 - DaMarcus Beasley (2 Eredivisie, 2 SPL, 1 KNVB Cup, 1 Scottish Cup, 1 Scottish League Cup)
4 - Maurice Edu* (2 SPL, 2 Scottish League Cup)
3 - John O'Brien (2 Eredivisie, 1 KNVB Cup), Chris Konopka (1 League of Ireland, 2 FAI Cup)
2 - Thomas Dooley (1 Bundesliga, 1 UEFA Cup), Oguchi Onyewu* (2 Jupiler League), Claudio Reyna (1 SPL, 1 Scottish Cup), Tim Howard (1 FA Cup, 1 English League Cup), Brad Friedel (1 English League Cup, 1 Turkish Cup)
1 - Jovan Kirovski (Champions League), Danny Califf (SAS Liga), Robbie Russell (Tippeligaen), Leo Krupnick (Ligat Ha'al), John Harkes (English League Cup), Kasey Keller (English League Cup), Michael Parkhurst* (Ekstra Bladet Cup), Troy Perkins (NM Cup), Brian West (NM Cup), Nate Weiss (Latvian Cup)