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Where Do We Go Now?
Gbherron (Seattle Sounders) 6 years ago
Well, just as a World Cup ends, a new campaign begins, and I sense a lot of really tough decisions in the future for the federation. "Project 2010 (the launch of the US youth system) put out it's first batch of students, headed by you. S. Superstar, Landon Donovan, back in 2002. Now this batch is nearing the end, , which begs the question, "Where do we go now? " In front of you I have compiled the three generations of players in US Soccer. I'm just looking for your feedback and projections of the first eleven come qualification time.

The Next Generation - Juan Agudelo (18), Michael Ambrose (17), Samir Badr (18), Erik Benjaminsen (18), Tristen Bowen (19), Lester Dewee (18), Luis Gil (17), JC Gyau (18), Sebastian Lletget (18), Jack McInerney (17), Francisco Navas (19), Amobi Okugo (19), Emilio Orozco (18), George Pantelic (18), Fabrice Picault (19), Parker Walsh (19), Bobby Wood (19), Cesar Zamora (19)

Middle-of-the-Road - Freddy Adu (20), Jozy Altidore (20), Alejandro Bedoya (23), Michael Bradley (24), Charlie Davies (24), Maurice Edu (24), Robbie Findley (25), Sean Franklin (25), Eddie Gavin (24), Stuart Holden (25), Sacha Kljestan (25), Dax McCarty (23), Michael Orozco (24), Chris Pontius (23), Robbie Rogers (23), Johann Smith (23), Jose Franciscon Torres (23), Preston Zimmerman (22)

On the Fringe/Veterans - DeMarcus Beasley (28), Kyle Beckerman (28), Carlos Bocanegra (31), Jonathan Bornstein (26), Edson Buddle (29), Connor Casey (29), Steve Cherundolo (31), Ricardo Clark (27), Kenny Cooper (26), Jay DeMerrit (31), Clint Dempsey (27), Landon Donovan (28), Benny Feilhaber (25), Herculez Gomez (28), Clarence Goodson (28), Brad Guzan (26), Tim Howard (31), Eddie Johnson (26), Jermaine Jones (29), Chad Marshal (26), Oguchi Onyewu (28), Heath Pearce (26)

I saw a lot of 28 and 27 year-olds on the roster, which worries me. That 31/32 year-old bunch is always the toughest to decide on. There is an obvious gap in youth produciton between the Donovan/Dempsey generation and the Altidore/Adu generation. I don't know what happened, but it's not good. Also, there is the possibility of Bradley being done after this World Cup, which would mean yet another new coach. I've compiled some options:

Jurgen Klinsmann - Analyst for ESPN, but a very prominent figure in the US soccer community. Was the #1 choice after last World Cup, having led Germany to a third place finish.
Bruce Arena - Coach in 2006, couldn't get team out of tough group. Has always been a prominent figure on the coaching front, currently having success with LA Galaxy.
Sigi Schmid - Current coach of Seattle Sounders FC, and prominent figure in the U20 and U17 organizations in the past. Won the MLS Cup with Columbus prior to leaving for Seattle.
Dominic Kinnear - Current coach of Houston Dynamo in MLS, led team to MLS Cup victories in 2006, 2007. Still a contender for the title year after year.

So, the obvious, yet unrealistic, choice is Klinsmann, but outside of that, who would you like leading the Yanks? In my personal opinion, I thought that Bradley had quite a bit of trouble with the team (particularly in qualifying), and wasn't that impressive. Your thoughts...
Oldglory0002 (Arsenal) 6 years ago
If Bradley doesn't come back for another term, I'd really like to see Jurgen Klinsmann take over. I've been watching him a little and he seems like a really smart guy with a good attitude who would be a good fit for the job. But as to what will actually happen with all this remains to be seen
Ltm017 6 years ago
Well I think Tim Howard is good for a while since he is only 31. Goalkeepers last longer and are usually older than other players. Heck he could play 2 more World Cups if he wanted he would 34/35? Then around 40 which by then he might retire but then again you never know....

I like Bradley and I think it should be an option for him to stay. I don't know what the personally relationship with players are but he hasn't done all bad with them and the only serious problem the US has is there defending. Yes Midfield can be cleaned up but I think compared to a lot of teams the US is solid. It would be different if they wanted to do an overhaul and clean up the entire team but I don't think they should sack Bradley just yet....

Oh and my friend said that maybe the US should get a European manager. I think this is a fantastic idea. Europeans operate in a different way and I think the US is not too far from where they could be in the next 4 years. I like Klinsmann I think he is a superb idea. Him and the right training and discipline you can see them in the Final next 4 years.
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
Just a little reading and watching material to get people talking and in case you do not know about some of these programs here are some links for you to check out. I will return in a bit to answer your questions arter I have composed my thooughts plus I am walking out the door to head to the Union game vs your Seattle Sounders.

The US Soccer Residency Program.


An interesting story about the 2010 project.

Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
I would really like to get Klinsmann, but like you said, that is very unlikely. Bradley is also unlikely to return, and as much as I like him, I think it is for the best if he didn't return, because second-time coaches do not do well on their second term (Lippi). So, my choice for coach, besides Klinsmann, is a coach from a central-european countries (Czech Republic, Slovenia, Slovakia, Germany) and I'll tell you why.

1. Milovan Rajevac- from Serbia, coaches Ghana
2. Matjaž Kek- from Slovenia, coaches Slovenia

Here are two examples. We played both of these teams, lost one, should have won one. I think both of these coaches did as good of a job coaching their teams as they could have. I think a coach like these two would be able to get the best out of our team. They install defence into their team, something that the US needs. They have systems that are organized and force the team to work together. They are well disciplined teams, and the coaches, though not having teams with great skilled players, manage to compete. Now, I naturally think that the USA has better skill players than Slovenia, probably equally many as Ghana, so, already playing like a disciplined team, I think a coach like this could be a good fit.
(Also, if you look at our records against teams like these, you will find it is not so good. So if you can't beat 'em, join 'em!)

Honestly that list worries me. Not quality of the players, but the experience. A little birdy told me that Jack McInerney is pretty good and Luis Gil is compared to Fabregas. So that doesn't worry me. What does worry me is experience. In that middle group, only a select few had legitimate playing time, while nobody in the first group had any. We can't rely on those guys from project 2010 anymore, look at what Italy did with old players.
BigShel touched on it yesterday. The USSF has to get the youth programs kicking, with quality coaches. The youth is the key for success.
Finally Jurgen Klinsmann also had a good point. Soccer is a game of the street. And that is where we have to start looking for our next generation of players. We do it for basketball, so for soccer to be the same, the collegiate soccer level has to grow, the high school soccer has to grow, and most importantly, the MLS has to grow for interest in soccer to bring out an American Lionel Messi
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
Joeymac right on target with your last point about klinsman's comments he has hit on a point I have discussed with alot of hispanic footy fans who lament the lack of participation by many hispanics who play soccer the way American youths play basketball and football for fun in the park with their friends but also purely for the love of the game where many more affluent youths play only in practice and in games rarely do they organiz pickup games like youths in and from other nations. Here is a link to the comments you referenced.

Espn- Lalas McManaman and Klinsman on the future of US Soccer.

The link says disabled but just click on the picture to see the video on youtube and when done just close the window to come back
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Just listening to this again, klinsmann is definitely a guy we need somewhere in the federation. He is someone who has seen firsthand the differences between american perception of soccer versus the rest of the world's. And if you just listen to his voice while he talkes, he almost sounds stressed, or dumbfounded, or something I just quite can't put my finger on because he is so amazed at how soccer on the youth level in america, is as he said, upside down to the rest of the world
[account-removed] 6 years ago
Klinnsman is not our guy. How many European teams made it this year to the round of 16? Now tell me how many south americans made it? Ok so our coach should most definitely be from SAmerica
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
We are talking about klinsmann as the head of the USSF or youth development, not coach.
Plus, go back to the 2006 tournament- 6 european teams in QF, 2 S American. It fluctuates. I have no problem with a S american coach, as long as he coaches to fit our team, not try to make our team fit into a S american system
Reidscott (Fiorentina) 6 years ago
Listening to Klinsman I see the future for the US team. He is dead on talking about the inner city kids and how are backward in how we promote the sport in this country. This is the kind of man we need in the position. He understands what we need and would be a positive force in taking the sport to the streets I feel.

This is a simple formula really. An effort has to be made to change the perception of the sport as one of finesse and " silly little game of kick ball " to one of International importance and stature through proper marketing to street kids. An effort to use cutting edge street marketing would work. I would make the game an " outsider " game.... Played by independent " Out of the mainstream " kids. Such as showing commercials that showcase the street talents and gritty tough attributes juxtaposed with boring old baseball, basketball, and football training videos....

Of course sprinkle in stuff to buy and places to play (this where we will have our biggest issue) and in time it will begin to sink in.

Here is the deal guys: when soccer becomes a sub-culture.... It will creep into the main culture fast. It can only do that by being on the outside in the first place.... A place it now occupies anyway. I think marketing to the streets.... Making it cool.... Starting a clothing line that is specific to the game.... Meaning you can wear stuff when you are " not " playing and it is way cool to do so....

These things may begin to get the game more run and could begin to get better players too. Also we need to let it be known we want the street players first.... Not last.... Our scouting has to change to the streets more and more and in time it will produce the top players from the kids that love the game most and play it all the time as their first sport.

You could see a commercial showing a scout for the US MNT.... Walking around the streets of the inner city asking peopls stuff and they point.... Then again.... And again.... Finally he turns the corner (and all of this is be & W....) and all of a sudden the sound of the ball and some awesome footage of some kids playing their asses off against each other.... In the street.... One of them is bleeding from a fall on the asphalt.... They do some awesome moves and go down and score through some garbage cans.... The kid morphs into a US Team player as he scores and the voice over says " (I think I will leave this part blank to see what you guys come up with) "

Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Hahaha very interesting, you aren't perhaps looking at an advertising job for the USSF are you? I really like your idea of trying to make soccer a "cool" sport, because right now it is perceived as a "sissy" sport. I also like the idea of sort of marketing soccer to the lower class. The main problem I see is that right now, basketball is the main "street sport", so soccer would have to overtake basketball's place for there to be success in recruiting from the street, otherwise, nobody will play or care. I also agree that we need to reach out to the hispanic community that is present in america who live the game. There is really so much to do when you sit down and think about it. Whoever comes in next will have a tough job on their plate
Reidscott (Fiorentina) 6 years ago
All of it could be done with the right leadership.... Will soccer get into the top 3? .... Prob not.... But we could find and develop way better players I think.... And that could lead to more championships and that could lead to more gloss and then more and more.... Have to start somewhere.... It will take a leader that has some b***s and says " enough " and then gets the money...
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Yeah the decision is ultimately down to the person choosing between soccer, basketball, football. But somebody has to make it their job for the decision to be soccer
Gbherron (Seattle Sounders) 6 years ago
Klinsmann = our savior

He gets it 100%. ODP is nice, and has produced good players, but when you narrow your selection down by running a program that costs $2, 000-$8, 000 a year, you're shooting yourself in the foot. These players who can afford often play just because they can, and not because they love football.

Klinsmann is genius, and is finally someone in the US who has the balls to say what's wrong with the system. I almost don't want him as our coach, but instead as the head of USSF. He grew up like any other european footballer who wasn't upper-class, but just had raw talent. And he says in the video, "I've lived here twelve years, and I'm shocked, truly. "
Gbherron (Seattle Sounders) 6 years ago
You guys are right about Klinsmann's observation of the lack of players from the street, but our Youth system is growing as we speak. In the 90's, USSF implemented the Olympic Development Program (ODP), which is a state-wide select team that you have to try out for, just like your usual club team. This basically creates a pool of players that tour the country playing other ODP teams, and when they get around 15/16 years old, USSF sends out scouts from the U17 national team. They then pluck these players out for the U17 world competition, and that's how most are spotted by clubs and more prominent youth academies. The difference, or change, to the system right now is the growth of MLS.

As MLS becomes more mainstream, they are creating their own youth teams owned and run by the main organization. The Red Bull New York academy is just now churning out it's first batch of national team members for the U20 age group. There was also a rule instated with the new collective Bargaining agreement that says you have to have so many "homegrown" players, similar to what the English FA is looking at. I think the reason for this is that USSF realizes that over time, our old developmental system (ODP and usl-d leagues) are on the outs as MLS begins to grow more and more.

I think once every single MLS team has it's own established youth academy, USL will disappear off the planet. The only time you'll see US soccer add a second tier in association with MLS will be when the second tier teams have their own academies (and also no salary cap, but I won't get into that). Promotion is so not a part of American sports that any disadvantage when it comes to do that could really hurt the sport
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
@GB I agree with what you have said about the youth system in the US it has improved immensly over the past few years but what it is lacking is inclusion primarily middle class and wealthy kids play soccer in the US and to a certian extent we market it as the thinking mans sport and so it has sort of a "nerdy" reputation amongst our other sports. But I am sure you have witnessed what I see in the area where I live I see youths and adults of Hispanic African and carribean origins playing in the parks playing in pickup games and even private leagues that are grassroots organizations that lie outside the attention of US Youth Soccer and the shame is many of these kids are far superior to players we have playing even at the premier levels these players must as Reidscott stated be included in the recruiting and scouting process. I have actually taken my daughters (yes I am talking about girls) to play in some of these informal games and although I met some resistance and mistrust in the beginning they are now welcomed to play even if the guy's see them as a novelty. It has improved their game immensly and some of the street players have even come to some of their travel games to show their support. I truely believe this is the true future of soccer/ football in the US. I will return to add my thoughts on coaching options after I get my thoughts organized
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
@ gbherron, you seem to know what you are talking about. I agree about basically everything you said
Gbherron (Seattle Sounders) 6 years ago
I played ODP for a year, so I know a bit about it...
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
You need to get back in there for sure I can;t believe you are only 14 and have the passion and knowlege of the game you do. I hope you are still playing
Gbherron (Seattle Sounders) 6 years ago
Not shockingly, those (spoiled, rich) kids who play ODP are just generally douche-bag-ish. I'm perfectly content playing club and school for now...
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
Yeah you see that kind of elitest attitude is exactly why alot of good athletes who come from more challenging economic circumstances don't get involved if you are a poor kid wearing 35. 00 shoes from Dicks you get intimidated when the rich kid comes out wearing 295. 00 adidas f-50 adizeros and his mom drops him off driving a Benz suv. And there is nothing wrong with having money but if that kid does not accept the poor kid as an equal in life and on the pitch US soccer and the entire soccer community suffer a great loss
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Here is a link from an article on espn.Com that highlighted our near future, for the 2014 world cup.

Donnchadh (Liverpool) 6 years ago
First of all fantastic post, I have been looking for a topic like this to discuss ever since we were knocked out, and thank you BigShel for directing me here.

Observing your(Gbherron) assessment of the national team and how we stand, I agree with just about everything you say. Surely we can't rely on Donovan and Demps to carry us through the tournament in 2014 like they did in this one. We need young players to come into their own. What I think we need more than anything is an out and out striker who is just a pure goal scorer and has a ratio of a goal every other game or better. Davies can develop into that player, but Jozy is not it, he is more of a target man, we saw his lack of finishing ability this World Cup(0 goals). Charlie is more of a wing forward by nature, and don't get me wrong Jozy is a great player, but they both need to understand how to score goals in big situations and do it consistently. Or that player could arise from nowhere, I think one thing we have going for us in the states is that because football is very obscure in the states a really great player could just pop up from nothing and make a huge impact on the world stage. Still that is hopeful. Like you have been saying we need to develop a world class youth system.

The youth program to me is almost too organized at too young an age. Players need to develop their own style at an early age and then go on to a world class system and learn the finer points of the game. What Klinsmann is saying about the best footballers come from poverty and hard situations is right on the money. Football needs to find it's place in the inner city before we start producing truly great players. People in the states think you need grass to play soccer, all you need is a flat surface(asphalt works just fine) something round, and two pairs of shoes or a couple trash cans. This may not sound like the optimum situation for great players to come from, but if people have the passion to play wherever and whenever they can, even in the worst conditions, then you will know the game has finally arrived in the states. We have seen a lot of Kobe Bryant in South Africa. If one in 10 kids in inner city Los Angeles who would have before all played basketball, sees Kobe at the world cup and decides to try and kick around a football, then that is a fantastic start. When prisoners are making footballs with their socks in the US, the game will be in a good place. Football has to be everywhere, and the love for the game will grow. I am not saying kids from wealthier neighborhoods can't make an impact on world football, look at Kaka, I am just saying the game needs to spread into every neighborhood around the country. And it seems right now it is only popular in the suburbs. Shoot it would be great to see real football spread into rural areas and farms, that is now dominated by American football.

I never attempted to try out for ODP and things like that, because I thought it divided the wealthy kids from the poor and football should unite not divide. And I agree with you that the MLS needs to develop youth programs and the game will progress at a much better rate. That way these teams will be putting money into the kids, not vice versa. I hope to found a team here in Flagstaff, called the Flagstaff's Old Boys(yes inspired by Lionel Messi's boyhood club) that's main focus would be a youth program, as it would most likely be a semi-pro team, too small of populous for MLS. That's still a big dream of mine, and we will see if it happens, but that's one way I think I could effect the game at a youth level. There is a lot, a lot of talent for how small a town Flag is and soccer is very well integrated in the culture here. I might go as far as to say it is the most popular sport in Flag, but that's probably because I hang out with kids that mainly play football(soccer). What I am trying to get at, is that, in theory, it only takes one player to make a difference in a World Cup(granted this player needs support but look at the team from Argentina in 1986, name one player that isn't Maradona) and that player could come from anywhere. There are so many great athletes in the US and it seems imminent that soon there will be a truly great footballer coming out of the states.comparable to a Cruijff or a Pele, well that's wishful thinking, but at least close to that caliber.

And as a team, we know we have the spirit. That was one of the most emotional events in the history of American sports when Donovan scored that goal. Sure we went out right after that goal, but people will be talking about that goal for a long time. We can be extremely proud of that moment and this team, because they left it all out on the field that night, against Algeria. People will say we didn't meet expectations in this World Cup, but I thought we exceeded them for the sole reason of that goal, and the emotion and joy it gave to the whole nation. Cheers Landon Donovan for scoring that goal, because if we lost that game, there would be no buzz about football in the states. Now there is tons. Well see how long it lasts once the WC is over.

As for the coach, I would like to see Bradley remain, because I think he did some very good things, and brings a great demeanor to this team. However the gold cup and friendlies coming up will tell of our progress, if we are not winning games, I think we need a new coach
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Yeah what was that about sunil gulati saying we failed our expectations? Our goal was to make it out of the group, and we did, and interest of the game is at an all time high. That's a success for me, but we could have gone further
MrPoopyPants (Tottenham Hotspur) 6 years ago
Big ups to BigShel for directing me here. Great discussion. My points will be somewhat rambling because that's how Mr. PP rolls.... Off the cuff:

I won't pretend to know anything about youth development and what we need to be doing there. I will say the following though: there are a variety of forces coming to together to propel soccer to forefront of our sports conscientiousness:

One of those forces is the internet. Serious. With the advent of the internet, international soccer has become more readily available to us. Kids can watch Man UTD - Man City on a peer-to-peer stream. Along with that, cable tv has dedicated interest in the sport with the Fox Soccer Network. Sites like footy tube offer constant highlights. I look at today and compare it to when I first played the game back in the late 70's. The game was completely inaccessible beyond what you did on the field at your weekend game. Now kids can watch the greats at any time. Add to that our growing popularity of MLS and we have a potent brew in the mix in terms of motivating young folks.

I can't talk really about development structure or how to tap into the most talent, I just know that the interest is there, in spades.

The other thing about the talent pool.... People bemoan the you. S. As already having sports that take away eligible youths from soccer, but I'd contend that soccer is probably more all inclusive and will therefore win out over basketball and football, at least. Why? Those two sports are heavily dependent on a person pushing two standard deviations beyond the mean in terms of size and strength. Soccer lends itself to a wider range of physiques that fall within the general population. When I was growing up I never thought I'd be an NBA star or play in the NFL, I knew I wasn't going to be 6ft 7inches tall or weight 290 lbs. Just wasn't going to happen. Baseball is a different matter, but I kind of think baseball is generally dying a slow and painful death. That is an entirely different debate.

Anyway, those are some thoughts to discuss, as for the next usmnt coach.... If we are going to go outside our country then it has to be for a coach who is experienced it squeezing out as much talent as possible from a less than talented side. Our talent pool will become stronger, but we can't have a coach who has made their career with teams that have two or three rock stars as the foundation. Bradley did a great job with the hand he was dealt. I'd love to see him go over to Europe and try and stake his claim in one of the leagues there, employing his work ethic and attention to detail. Klinsmann seems like a reasonable choice, but I also think he might be a bigger asset at the organizational level for you. S. Soccer. I agree with y'all about how he gets it. He's been here long enough to understand the situation and sounds like he may have some solutions to it.

Anyway, it will be an interesting next four or so years, watching new talent emerge and seeing what choices we make. I have no doubt though that the interest in the support will only get stronger and stronger.

My prediction is that being America, we take in all comers from around the world, we should be able to turn our vast diversity into a powerhouse, but it make take another ten to twenty years.
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
LOL dude love your style! You need bigger cuffs to hold all that jazz!
Donnchadh (Liverpool) 6 years ago
Haha I dig your styley too bud. You make some great points in there too, may have to sift through a little bit, but still a lot of good points. Surely about the internets, spreading the futbol is a great point. And about futbol being open to every body type, great point. I think our styles are kind of similar though, I mean I got talking about the FOB's in my post, that is the definition of rambling right there
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
OK guys, I have another question.

Do you prefer the MLS to grow in size, power, talent, youth programs, etc, or would you rather see football players from the United States going overseas and playing for top european teams.

I think we all agree that the best choice would be a development of the MLS and its youth systems, and then players go to europe to polish their game, but if you could only choose one option, what would your choice be?
Gbherron (Seattle Sounders) 6 years ago
Well, shockingly it's both. MLS is growing into a developmental league. Frankly, in order to grow, all the MLS needs is money, and there is some fantastic talent being shipped overseas. We're finally above other federations as far as status. The greatest example of that I can find is Colombia. After the 90s, their federation imploded, and is just now coming back. Look at all the young talent in MLS from there. They come to us to become better players and develop. Yeah, Fredy Montero and Francisco Torres will be off in Europe in a few years, but who gives a hoot. They're probably worth a million pounds a piece
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
Wow so funny you mention columbia everybody should look for an ESPN show called 30/30 it chronicles Colombian football in the eighties and shows how they rose to the top because the top clubs were all financed by druglords especially Nacional and the national team both were bankrolled by Pablo Escobar the infamous durg lord hunted and killed by US and Colombian drug forces in the late eighties. This video/movie is a must see for the serious soccer fan. It's called "The two Escobar's"
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
Sorry for the double post but I still need to weigh in on MLS vs overseas. Unfortunayly the MLS has set up the league using a very sound business model where they control the players salaries and with no exception own the players rights all team owners are equal partners and share equaly in the Tv revenues. Controled cost and reasonable ticket prices while good for the fans limit profits while ensuring league stability and longevity. Unfortunatly this actually hurts US soccer because the current business model prohibits the majority of professional players to play and live soccer full time like their european and south American counter parts. The average MLS player makes approx. $147, 000 per year while get this the highest paid players are Beckham at 6. 5 mil Donovan at 2. 13 mil Juan Pablo Angel at 1. 92 mil and juan DeGuzman and Freddy lundberg at 1. 72 and 1. 31 mil respectivly. But here is where it gets tricky the median average or midpoint is 88. K which means half of the proffesional players that make up the MLS half of 323 active players make less than that median figure. And the most unbelievable figure of all is the league minimum guaranteed salary is 12, 500 dollars a that to some of the top EPL stars for example who earn upwards of 250, 000 per week! I have no problem with the MLS's model and I am all for running a profitable business that does not price gouge the end user the fans. For a player to learn their craft at the highest levels against the best in the world the MLS needs to view itself as a feeder system to send top talent to europe and or South America where the players will get the international experience we will need to compete on a global level. The league should then reinvest the transfer fee's into their own youth development program giving young talent the oppoutunity to sign for a professional team at a young age just as happens in europe and South America. As of this moment the MLS hampers the growth of US soccer players to reach their full potential
Hill (Arsenal) 6 years ago
Could you source where you got the average wage of 147, 000? I actually find it hard to believe its that high. If it is, it shouldn't include the likes of Beckham and Donovan. That really inflates the average.

I'm okay with the MLS being a feeder system to the Euro leagues. It gives younger guys a place to show their skill, a high profile place where big clubs can see them. It also gives youngsters a place to play against those Euro veterans who are on the down. Freddy, Henry (hopefully), Beckham etc. This gives an insight into what is needed to play at a higher level. I can't see the MLS being a place where people want to go to play for another 20-30 years
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
Here are a couple of sources I had looked at two days ago when I started looking into the salaries.



Hill (Arsenal) 6 years ago
Okay sweet thanks! I also found this which is interesting. A list of how much each player makes.

Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
So you agree that the best way to move forward is to sell players to europe, use the money to develop youth systems, and then sell those players when they get older to help them learn more and get better?
Gbherron (Seattle Sounders) 6 years ago
While we're still growing, yes.

And those numbers are extremely tainted by DPs, most of whom are in their late 30s. I fyou we're to take that out, the average would be much less. I found an article the other day on how some MLS players have to carry second jobs. Kind of sad...
MrPoopyPants (Tottenham Hotspur) 6 years ago
Europe still is the final proving ground. It has the most money involved. I don't mind seeing our players go over there to play. MLS is getting better but it will be a long time before we can cultivate talent purely within our pro league for international play. Right now I vote for more moves to Europe, with time I'd like to see it become more and more homegrown
Wiskid (Arsenal) 5 years ago
MLS should grow it will make team USA better but currently we are on the verge of something something wonderful. People are paying attention to soccer! We need to see friendly's where the US can play well we need to see Man UTD and Barca and Arsenal on prime time TV we need to see the Champions League final on network TV. The MLS can only grow if people can see how cool soccer is and to do that I think players need to go to Europe I know it seemed like I was going the other way but if we get players at squads where they can star or at least start people will pick up a team and follow them and then grow into the MLS or maybe vis versa but the point is the team USA to be better we must play against the best day in and day out so go to Europe do that come back play well for country keeps exceed peoples expectations and rule the world.... In soccer terms of course
Gbherron (Seattle Sounders) 6 years ago
Since I haven't seen any yet, I'm gonna' throw it out there.... Let's see those lineups


The center of defence needs a complete overhaul. We're gonna' be stuck with Marshall plus either a 32 year-old, or a 23 year-old. We have options out in the wing fullback positions, but Bornstein, Spector and Feilhaber isn't the most glamorous list. We have a whole plethora of options up front, and I think the center pairing of Edu and Bradley is our best. Still will be interesting to see if Dempsey, Donovan and co. Are still chugging away at that point
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
I wouldn't put reilhaber at right back, unless he was to play as a RWB, and even though I don't know if he'd be a fit there. And if you read up a few posts, on a link I posted it mentions two center backs who are killer athletes that might make their way in. Spector can also play center back, and his game is surely to get better in england
Borg (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Great forum topic and something that has been on my mind since Becks made the move to LA.

As its been said, soccer needs to be marketed to kids on the streets. We win 'hearts and minds' by erasing the stereotypes that soccer is boring and for 'sissies', and replacing it with the fact that it requires less physical gifts and is very rewarding in terms of fitness. We all know the fact that its THE world sport means nothing to most americans. At the most basic level all you really need is a ball and some friends. I strongly believe a good portion of the skills I learned were from experimenting with friends and fooling around in pick-up games, especially with hispanics and other groups who already had it engrained in their culture, I learned from them. I really feel a large problem with US soccer is a lack of creativity in every aspect with an unneccesary emphasis on conditioning. The streets can change this where ODP can't.

Look at skateboarding, it dominates the subculture and gets little mainstream attention yet americans are very dominant in it. I witnessed first-hand the snobby rich kids from the 'burbs dominating the ODP programs. I tried out when I was 15 but being from a town 4 hours away it just wasnt really an option for my family, especially with school. Being from an area where many cities are in the 8-15000 range I can tell you that these 'subcultures' are growing extremely fast much due to the internet as mr pp said and especially since youth programs growing due to more established infrastructure.

In terms of the coach issue klinsmann would be ideal but I think it may be a high expectation. I'm very much in favor of an eastern european coach. There is no question of their willingness to relocate from their area as many have proven and they do a fantastic job of making the most out of available talent/resources. Also, they tend to favor attack minded and more exciting football which is a plus.

I'm really excited with whats been happening in terms of rencent exposure. I've witnessed my own roomates who had ZERO interest a year ago starting to become fans and asking me about the EPL/players and sometimes taunting me when united lose. Just like anything, advertizing and more tv time are so important.

Its so important for Americans like us to stay involved and pour our passion and knowledge back into the sport at youth levels whether it be coaching, administration, or even reffing. I currently play at the college club level and I know that it will not only stay with me forever but I will pass it on as well
Hill (Arsenal) 6 years ago
Dude, I've experience the same when it comes to ODP in footy here. Its completely geared towards the more wealthy people. Because of this a lot of the people who play on those teams, and thus are looked at for the US national team, are kids whose parents literally pulled a Frank Lampard and bought their kids spot on the team. The political bullshit at the lowest levels needs to stop in order for the USA to see their complete potential at the top
Borg (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Totally agree man. These kids have access to so much: camps, premiere club teams (ridiculous fee's), winter leagues. All i've seen from ODP is kids programmed with no creativity. The creativity comes from the less fortunate kids playing in the street
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Very good point about skateboarding. And like your friends, my family became interested in soccer. My dad, who doesn't mind the game, but hates the diving, actually sat down with me and my sister and watched the entire us- ghana game. He listened while I explained the offsides rule, and he even started yelling when the ghana players started to waste time at the end. It just shows that when it comes to the "united states", average americans will support the team even if they don't necessarily like the sport
[account-removed] 6 years ago
Dude the youth is where futbol starts. Lovely lovely post that is right down to the point. Now you must also bring up the fact that we need great leadership
[account-removed] 6 years ago
I did not have time to read all the previous posts, but let me break down to you in simple terms so that we may talk and discuss about them later.
The to-do list is the following:

1)Get rid of Bradley, sure the guy can get you trough the first round but....common lets get real. I suggest getting a coach who has actual experience from an actual club. Let's see an Argentine coach, a Brazilian coach, an Italian coach.... You know along the lines of teams who can actually play.

2)USE immigrant power! In the USA we have all kinds of immigrant blood everywhere.... So why the (MOD Edit) am I seeing a bunch of (Mod Edit)? Where are the brazilians? The latinos? Where are the kids that play futbol (soccer) in the streets? Where are those people that have only futbol to get them out of their poverty? Much like basketball and american football.... We need those kids. (don't even think about bringing up Bocanegra)

That's as far as I am going to take it right now. BigShel I know you will have some words on this lol
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
Yeah you clearly did not read the previous post and that's a shame because I think you would have changed the tone of your comments drastically. So when you return to see what kind of reaction you have stired up it is my hope that you will take the time to read some of the previous post and watch the posted videos. We will patiently wait your ammended response we are having a a reflective conversation after the dissapointing results in the this world Cup and are looking to have a dialougue about how to fix the problems. I hope you will join that dialougre that's why I invited you
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Disagree with a brazilian or argentine coach in general for now. Those teams tend to have more flair and a better skill set than the US players. BUT maybe in the future, if the US can get some players off the streets who have genuine skill, then we can look into a south american coach. I just don't think it fits right at the moment. Right now I think we need a coach who can get more out of a team than they have. I'm beginning to think that bradley did that to an extent, but we need to strengthen our defence. As for your second point, what bigshel said
[account-removed] 6 years ago
Hahahahaha Dude I meant no disrespect. I have lived in the US for about 17 years and I am just completely pissed off at the inefficiencies of USA "soccer". We have all the right tools to make a great squad with a great coach and instead we insist on making a sorry ass team. I want to cheer for the USA so badly in the World Cup as I do when the Olympics come around, but the team makes it so hard!

I am sharing my complete frustration not as an outsider, but as someone who is seeing the developement of the sport in this country going in the right direction, but ever so f*****g slowly it is just disheartening.

I will now take the time to read all the above posts as I did not have the time prior to right now
[account-removed] 6 years ago
JoeyMac have you seen Dungas style of coaching? He is not down with Flair and not down with inefficiencies. I really gotta' say that if the US wanna best Ghana futbol, they must listen to me. Plus I will point out that if you want a European coach, look at how many Europeans qualified for the round of 16, and look at all the Latino countries that made it.

As for the dissapointing results? Second round for the US is an achievement that surprised the hell out of me with how disorganized and lucky the US play. I am not trying to s**t on peoples parades, but our quality of footy is not going to get any better if we keep relying on the same tactics, same players, same blah blah. To me it is so evident what the US has to do, and to be honest as long as we continue relying on a semi-pro coach we have no chance. Look at what Bielsa did with Chile, it is a prime example of what a good coach, from a futbol country can do with a bunch of nobodies.

Klinnsman would be a great coach for this country, but seeing how the european teams did, I am putting my faith in a South American coach.

We have everything we need to make a great team, we have the fast strong people up front, we have a good midfield, we have the big dudes at the back.... Its all about who chooses our players and who directs them. Bradley did a good job starting this out for us, but now a bigger head needs to take the reins and organize a stronger team. Because honestly we have beaten Spain, we have taken on Brazil.... We have it all there on the table.... We can take it under stronger leadership
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Coaching brazil is different that coaching the usa. We are not brazil yet, unfortunately. Dunga's players are frankly better than ours, especially the back line, so he has the privelage of telling them his style that he wants to play, and they have the skills to go out there and incorporate it into their play. I have no problem with a s. American coach, but I just don't see it happening right now unless they can revamp the whole system and turn the us team into a team of flair and style. That's not where we are right now. BUT. We can achieve that by getting players off the streets, etc. Then, once we have the right players, I think a south american coach would be a good idea. Just not right now
[account-removed] 6 years ago
The coaches job is to pick the players. We have brazilians in this country who play great, we have big blokes in the back, serbians swiss you name it, we have Argentinos, we have Africans, we have all kinds of players that are not being called up that have much more talent than some of our players. We need a south American coach to grab these players. I strongly disagree, especially since my Bielsa/Chile comment kinda nullified what you have to say. If you have the right coach, and you call up the right players? s**t man the US could be soooo much better
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Did you read my post at all? Because look at my last couple of lines, I agreed with you, just not at the right time.
Look at my last two lines, I said that i'd like a south american coach eventually. Maybe by 2018. My problem is that by suggesting just throwing out players on the squad so we can re-stock with latinos or guys from the street right away is just calling for failure. We still have years out of bradley, davies, altidore, bornstein, feilhaber, holden, rodgers, heck, maybe even dempsey and donovan. These guys aren't from chile, they don't play the same as chile, so I don't want a coach who is going to try and coach them to be something they are not, or get rid of these guys to throw in unexperienced players just because they want them to fit their style JUST YET. Incorporate them slowly, then eventually maybe we can become a south american style team like those that you so love. THAT's why I think klinsmann can do a good job as head of the youth development, because he seems to have an idea of how to extract that raw talent from the cities. Then we can transition to whatever type of team we want to be
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
I also don't think you should use success at this year's WC. 4 years ago, european teams had 6 teams in the QF
[account-removed] 6 years ago
The last WC was in Europe. This was neutral ground which is why I bring that up
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
It is neutral but I think the south american teams do (did) have an advantage, because south africa, like south america, is in the southern hemisphere, so thee climate is alike. I don't know what's happening, all the sudden s american teams are losing, brazil, argentina, and most likely paraguay
[account-removed] 6 years ago
I spoke too soon it would appear haha
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Posted comment in wrong place, my bad
BigShel (Philadelphia Union) 6 years ago
Nice Video!    
Joeymac (Manchester United) 6 years ago
Thank you for always allowing the first goal and making it hard on yourselves. HA jk  All true, especially the diving part
MrPoopyPants (Tottenham Hotspur) 6 years ago
Gives me goose bumps
Wiskid (Arsenal) 5 years ago
I am so glad we don't dive. I was telling my cousin that today I love the fact that the only time a US player is down for more then 4 seconds it means they are seriously injured. Get up that's what I was told my whole life you can't help your team on your back. Get up and play with respect and courage
Joeymac (Manchester United) 5 years ago
No posts here in a while, so I'll see if anyone picks this up:

Possible Roster for 2014?

Chandler---- Ream---Goodson-----Lichaj

It'd be a relatively young defence, but why the hell not go for it? It's not like our defence is a worldbeater anyway at this point.
I think that by far this is our strongest midfield that we could put out right now, and Dempsey could support the goalscorers and give us a legitimate scoring threat from places other than set pieces and crosses.
Donnchadh (Liverpool) 5 years ago
It looks like a great roster Joey, I love Dempsey in the whole, it's usually where I have him in my formations. The only thing I would change is put Charlie in for Altidore, Jozy has been proving himself in the Gold Cup, but I think he would be better as a super sub against top top competition. In three years hopefully Charlie's injury will be a distant memory. I have always been greatly impressed with Agudelo whenever I have seen him play, he has a great touch, attacking mentality and is creative in the final third while not being selfish.

One change I would make, I like the defence, and though I love to attack, maybe put another defensive minded midfielder in the lineup. Like take out Jozy and just have Clint supporting a single striker(Agudelo, and Jozy and Charlie could be attacking subs) put in Edu or Feilhaber and put Benny in the middle or Maurice in front of the defence and move Bradley up to feed Stu and Donovan.

Great lineup though, who are the two young central defenders in Los Angeles? Gonzalez is one maybe, don't know the MLS that well, haven't watched a Galaxy game all season

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