American Exports: At least five clubs chasing Parkhurst
AMSTERDAM – FC Nordsjælland backline ace Michael Parkhurst suffered a hamstring strain in their weekend loss at FC Copenhagen, but the club says it's not serious enough to affect the major league free agent bidding war brewing for his services.
Multiple sources have informed MLSsoccer.com that at least five clubs have been sizing up the 28-year-old Rhode Island native, with the admirers spread among England, Germany, Italy and Spain. Parkhurst, who runs out of contract at month's end, made some fans around the continent with his solid displays against Chelsea, Juventus and Shakhtar Donetsk in the recently completed Champions League group stage.
The defender was pulled with the knock in the 72nd minute of Sunday's defeat, Nordsjælland's last game until the extended Superliga winter break ends in March. After the match, Parkhurst told reporters that he was seeking a new challenge after four success-filled years in Denmark. The Wild Tigers already seem resigned to losing him to free agency, meaning it was also likely his last appearance for the club.
"He had a minor strain, it's nothing big," FCN press officer Kristoffer Skadhauge told MLSsoccer.com of the injury. "The players have gone on holiday, so it won't be a problem when he returns to wherever he will play next."
Parkhurst has notched three goals and a league-high seven assists thus far this term for the defending champions. He was recently voted the 11th-best Superliga player of the first 20 games of the current season in a Tips-Bladet survey of the league's managers. To boot, the US international made UEFA's official Champions League Team of the Week for Matchday 3 after a 1-1 FCN draw with Juventus in late October.
Since arriving to Nordsjælland from the New England Revolution in 2008, Parkhurst has worked 127 contests across all competitions for the Wild Tigers. In addition to helping the club to its first league crown last season, the American also celebrated back-to-back Danish Cup triumphs in 2010-11.