Make no doubt about it: Today could be a turning point in the season for one MLS team.
FC Dallas manager Schellas Hyndman revealed to Soccer America that 2010 MLS MVP David Ferreira will see a foot ankle specialist today which could be the difference for the Colombian overcome the psychological hump that Hyndman believes is proving the major hindrance.
“We hope he’ll walk out of that appointment Wednesday feeling positive about himself and ready to go,” says Hyndman. “He just needs the psychological strength to feel, ‘All right, I’m a month away, I’m a week away.’ He just needs that reassurance.”
While FC Dallas face Southern Methodist University later today (8:30 pm ET), the MLS Cup champion LA Galaxy suffered their third consecutive defeat of the preseason yesterday, 3-0 at the hands of the expansion Montreal Impact. But manager Bruce Arena is hardly concerned: “Not losing a whole lot of sleep over it, to be honest with you. This is, just for us, evaluation. Fitness, basically. That's what it is.”
The Montreal Impact have revealed that it was a stroke of good luck that allowed the club to cross paths with former Serie A defender Matteo Ferrari, and they are bullish they can sign him: “We are excited that he will be joining the club. … The details of a potential deal have to be finalized with the league, but we are confident that it can get done quickly," says Impact sporting director Nick De Santis.
The other comment that will catch the eye of Impact supporters is the statement made by owner Joey Saputo, who gave the latest on the Designated Player search: “We will not be making any announcements before the month of May because the summer transfer window only opens on July 1. Our fans can count on us and they will not be disappointed.”
We’ll see if Argentine midfielder Lucas Acosta makes it to Impact training camp as reported in this article. (SPANISH)
In the meantime, Impact manager Jesse Marsch is working the roster he has at his disposal, which includes former Real Salt Lake midfielder Collen Warner: "He's such as nice kid. I'm trying turn him into [being] a little tougher. … Now he has to take an extra step where he can be an everyday pro."
Two MLS teams in the midst of impressive preseason runs are the Portland Timbers and Chicago Fire, and they face off today at The Home Depot Center (2 pm ET). The other all-MLS battle features the Columbus Crew and the Seattle Sounders squaring off in Bradenton, Fla. (11 am ET).
Crew manager Robert Warzycha gave an update on his team’s camp, including highlighting the specific players who have impressed thus far and a new Jamaican left back who is likely to stick with the team.
Another two MLS clubs will face college opposition: The Philadelphia Union face the University of Central Florida in Orlando, Fla. (1 pm ET), while the New England Revolution play Boston College in Foxborough, Mass. (1:30 pm ET).
It’s not necessarily what Jay Heaps and the Revs wanted to hear: Forward Nate Jaqua is reportedly considering retirement after not accepting an offer made by the club which has since been rescinded.
The Revs are also managing the about-face by Colombian forward José “Pepe” Moreno, and the Colorado Rapids may be going through something similar according to this blog post, which delves into the snag that may have hit the Martín Riveros deal that many Rapids fans were already looking forward to.
The San Jose Earthquakes and Houston Dynamo tied 2-2 yesterday and Houston veteran Brad Davis continues to be encouraged: “I think everybody's been pleased with the results so far. … It may not be the prettiest soccer. The soccer is going to come, but we're seeing who's willing to do the dirty work.”
Englishman David Bentley is not fooling around when it comes to talk about an MLS loan deal: “He would like to go there on loan as soon as possible,” says his agent. The Vancouver Whitecaps apparently have the inside track, although team president Bob Lenarduzzi says otherwise: “That seems way out there. I don’t know where that one came from.”
When it comes to 33-year-old Scottish midfielder Barry Robson, who reports in England claim will join Vancouver on a free transfer when Middlesbrough’s season is over, Lenarduzzi opted to say “we don’t comment on speculation.”
Going the other way is former New York goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul, who English media say is on trial at Doncaster.
Toronto FC’s Paul Mariner spoke about the contract situations of two of his Designated Players in 2012. He says that talks regarding Julian de Guzman’s future should heat up this summer, while the team is also looking ahead to keeping Torsten Frings: “If he has got another one, two, four, five years left in his legs … we’ll try and keep him at the club as long as possible.”
Meanwhile, TFC academy director Thomas Rongen sees another of his US Under-20 prospects join the Canadian club on trial. The latest name is Moises Orozco.
The San Jose Earthquakes landed their own Englishman with the return of Simon Dawkins on loan from Tottenham. After a transfer to Twente fell through in January, Dawkins was made available and the Quakes couldn’t be happier: “If you look at the squad, it is better than it has ever been,” says manager Frank Yallop.
Portland Timbers forward José Adolfo Valencia reveals that there were plenty of tears before and after the knee surgery that will keep him out several months. He claims that he had the option of playing through the injury because he felt no pain but now he’s focused on a comeback: “[The Timbers] just got to know me and yet they were worried about me. I’ll never forget that and all I want to do is get myself better and repay their attention with attitude and goals.” (SPANISH)
Speaking of the Timbers, the club made two cuts to their roster yesterday, one involving South African player Lance Davids, who plays in Belgium.
New Philadelphia Union defender Chris Albright wants the club’s supporters to know he’s one of them: "I understand what it is to be a Philadelphia fan. I have that passion in me to do everything I can to keep the Philly fans happy and do my best."
Club pride was evident in the words of Real Salt Lake assistant C.J. Brown, who will be the seventh member of the Chicago Fire’s “Ring of Fire,” which honors the club’s legends, including Peter Nowak and the current Fire manager Frank Klopas. “I personally look up to them," says Brown. "I don’t think I compare to any of them as a player or person but it’s really awesome to know they look at me in that way."
Vancouver Whitecaps left back Alain Rochat wants a winning team in 2012 because he can’t bear thinking about a repeat of Vancouver’s expansion season: “Another year like we had last year? No more. … I just want more wins. I'll do everything I can this year to win every game.”
Another Whitecaps veteran, John Thorrington, takes it a step further. He expects the playoffs: "We know what's required, and come October and November, we expect to be there [in the playoffs].”
We can expect a new jersey from Chivas USA later today as the club’s GM confirms the unveiling taking place at 30,000 feet.
Stay tuned for updates. @cdchivasusa Jersey unveiling at 30k feet. Wednesday.— Jose Domene (@domene) February 15, 2012
It sounds like Everton manager David Moyes is thinking ahead to the future when he talks about how he chooses to manage the Landon Donovan loan situation: “If we could have had him longer, we would have done. I wouldn’t be asking, because Galaxy have been good enough to give us this time with him. I don’t want to ruin that relationship.”
In UEFA Champions League action today, New York Red Bulls forward Thierry Henry says his goodbyes in his final match for Arsenal at AC Milan (2:30 pm ET, Fox Soccer and Fox Deportes), while Zenit take on Benfica (noon ET, Fox Soccer and Fox Deportes).
Neymar and Santos of Brazil are involved in one of today’s Copa Libertadores matches in Bolivia against The Strongest (5 pm ET, Fox Deportes), while Ronaldinho and Flamengo travel to face Lanús (7 pm ET, Fox Deportes).
Look out Michael Gspurning. There’s a new goalkeeper that will be wearing Seattle Sounders green and her name is Hope Solo.
Lastly, we leave you with this video of Solo’s USWNT co-star Alex Morgan from the set of Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Issue shoot: “I didn’t feel I was naked at all. … I’m so happy with the outcome. I love the way they painted the swimsuit on me.”
The Sideline: Vancouver Whitecaps send a Valentine’s wish to Portland Timbers
German-based US goalkeeper Luis Robles confirms NYRB talks
NY’s Rafa Márquez included in Mexico’s squad for exhibition vs. Colombia
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