Kick Off: Rumors continue to swirl around Red Bulls DPs
Thierry Henry and Rafa Márquez have gotten the majority of the headlines recently, but Tim Cahill appears to be gaining ground in the race for foreign attention, legitimate or otherwise.
A report in the Daily Mail on Monday – unsourced, of course – claims Everton, Sunderland, Newcastle, Tottenham and QPR are lining up to tempt New York with offers to take the Australian on loan this offseason. Following the Red Bulls' playoff exit in November, Cahill alluded to a return to Everton in January, but there's still no definitive word on whether the recent reports surrounding the club's prospective captain are legitimate.
On the other hand, reports on Monday that Márquez is close to sealing a permanent move to Club Leon in Liga MX are a bit more fleshed out. Word in Mexico is that the Red Bulls Designated Player will sign a two-year deal with the Apertura semifinalists. Talking to the guys on ExtraTime Radio, ESPN's John Sutcliffe seemed sure the move would go down. We've heard that before with Rafa, though.
Sutcliffe was also confident José Luis Sánchez Solá, or "El Chelís" as he's commonly known, will be the next coach of Chivas USA. The club is staying quiet for now. Chelís, though? He's talking up a storm. (SPANISH)
If Solá is hired, he may have a decision to make regarding the future of forward Juan Agudelo, who recently impressed during a training stint in Scotland with Celtic. Could Agudelo and Andy Najar, who is currently training or on trial (depending on who you believe) at Anderlecht, help break ground for MLS as Homegrown players?
Speaking of Homegrown prospects, Columbus have their sights on Akron midfielder and US U-20 prospect Will Trapp, who on Monday announced he was leaving school to turn pro. According to the Columbus Dispatch, the Crew have already made Trapp an offer, but it seems he's got some other options as well.
“As a young man, he would love to play in Europe because of the opportunities,” Liz Trapp, Will's mother, said. “ That’s a dream, but I don’t know where the fit is going to be. As a parent, I would love to have him here in town.”
FC Dallas jettisoned many of their Homegrown players this offseason, but they picked up a potential replacement for Daniel Hernandez and Julian de Guzman on Monday. Find out who here.
FCD were also the latest team to get the full season review treatment on MLSsoccer.com on Monday. Check out all the season wraps, including columns from the Armchair Analyst and team-specific Opta Spotlights, here.
Sporting KC seem primed to make an addition on Tuesday, as club president Robb Heineman spilled the beans on Twitter. Could the Matt Besler contract negotiations be reaching a conclusion as well? One reporter in Kansas City believes an announcement could come Tuesday.
Does much of this sound like speculation? Perhaps, but welcome to the LA Galaxy's world, where guesswork and rumor mongering run rampant.
Meanwhile, the Union are dealing mostly in absolutes this offseason. They wanted Sébastien Le Toux back. They got him. And when Jeff Parke wanted to return to his Philly roots, the club made it happen. Check out more quotes from Parke and head coach John Hackworth here.
Of course, there are some rumors floating around PPL Park. The most persistent involve Carlos Valdés. It seems Colombian side Santa Fe want to bring him in on loan, but terms might not be agreeable for the Union and MLS.
Odds are Valdés beat up rookie Chandler Hoffman in training a time or two during 2012. This is what the UCLA product had to say about the difference between college and MLS center backs: "In college, the center backs you're playing against aren't humongous, the majority of them aren't. In the MLS, the majority of center backs are guys like Jámison Olave or Omar Gonzalez, these towering center backs. I'm just getting used to having the physical demands of the game and how long the season is."
Like Chandler, Red Bulls general manager Jerome de Bontin is new to MLS. In a television interview, de Bontin retracted previous statements about the viability of a second MLS franchise in New York. Read what else he had to say here.
Sporting KC are big into Twitter, as you saw above, but the NASL's commissioner used it to make a strange fan request: soccer or football?
Falcons owner Arthur Blank wants to build a state-of-the-art stadium in Atlanta. What does that have to do with a potential MLS team in the area?
Finally, Jimmy Conrad and KICKTV were at the Manchester Derby. Experience the day through Conrad's eyes.
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