Friday, August 21, 2009

8/21/09: MLS Starting To Get It Right, Signing Younger International Talent






MLS is starting to get it right, signing younger talent mainly from the America's instead of older European talent like the league did in the circa 90's and early 2000's. MLS is still signing some European players but instead of stars past their prime these are younger, lesser known talent who could spring into big time players. The average age of recent MLS Summer transfers is 25 exactly, buoyed mainly by San Jose and their signing of 34 year old Andre Luiz Moreira. National team starters come from Honduras, Trinidad & Tobago, El Salvador, Haiti, Burundi, and Costa Rica. Players in their national team's picture or have received starts recently come from Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia, Scotland, the USA, and etc. Players previously in their National team's plans come from Brazil, Hungary, and Austria.

In regards to club play, incoming players were on the books of clubs last season such as Aberdeen, Cruz Azul, Chivas De Guadalajara, Marathon, SC Caambuur, Anderlecht, SC Heerenveen, Brescia, Jaguares, Coventry City, and Red Bull Salzburg.

Overall, the Summer 2009 transfer window has been, in my opinion, the best midseason transfer window as of yet for MLS. The supporting cast in MLS is improving. Don't believe me? Check out the resumes below.

MLS 2009 incoming Summer transfers(in order that picture appears above):

1. Luis Angel Landin, Age: 24, Position: Forward, Nationality: Mexican, Last Club: Cruz Azul, Senior Caps: 5 for Mexico, 2 for U-23 team with 2 goals. Already over 150 caps of experience in Mexican First Division with 33 goals. MLS Club: Houston Dynamo
2. Emilio Renteria, Age: 24, Position: Forward/Attacking Mid, Nationality: Venezuelan, Last Club: Caracas FC, Senior Caps: 3 for Venezuela with 3 goals, 19 total goals at the youth levels. Over 120 caps in Venezuelan first division with 26 goals in league play. Helped Caracas FC to a Quarterfinal run in Copa Liberatdores last season. MLS Club: Columbus Crew.
3. Jesus Padilla, Age: 22, Position: Forward, Nationality: Mexican-American, Last Club: Chivas De Guadalajara. 24 caps since 2006 with Mexican first division side Chivas De Guadalajara. MLS Club: Chivas USA
4. Jamith Cuesta, Age: 20, Position: Defender, Nationality: Columbian, Last Club: Sante Fe/Expreso Rojo. A starter for Colombia's U-20 team and a solid prospect for Colombia going forward. Was a starter for most of 2007 for Sante Fe(one of Colombia's bigger clubs) until moving to second division side Expreso Rojo in 2008 where Jamith also was a starter. MLS Club: Chivas USA
5. Marvin Chavez, Age: 25, Postition: Attacking Midfielder, Nationality: Honduran, Last Club: Marathon. Senior Caps: A midfielder starter for solid CONCACAF side Honduras as of late with 17 caps and 1 goal since 2006. MLS Club: FC Dallas
6. Jair Benitez, Age: 30, Position: Left Back, Nationality: Colombian, Last Club: Independente Medellin. Senior Caps: 7. MLS Club: FC Dallas
7. Rachid El Khalifi, Age: 30, Position: Midfielder, Nationality: Dutch, Last Club: SC Cambuur. Senior Caps: 0. Has played all 257 of his caps in the Dutch Second Division scoring 33 goals in the process. Also played a season in the Dutch First Division with SC Cambuur. MLS Club: Real Salt Lake
8. Nelson Gonzalez, Age: 20, Position: Midfielder/Forward, Nationality: Argentinian, Last Club: Quilmes. Senior Caps: 0. Lesser known commodity, has been with Quilmes of Argentinian Second Division since 2007 receiving 1 senior cap in 2007 and 9 senior caps in 2008. MLS Club: Real Salt Lake
9. David Habarugira, Age: 20, Position: Left Back, Nationality: Burundi/Belgian, Last Club: Union Saint Galliose via Anderlecht. Senior Caps: 6 with Burundi. Was an Anderlecht youth product from 2002 to 2007, receiving one senior cap in 2007. MLS Club: DC United
10. Danny Szetela, Age: 22, Position: Defensive Midfielder, Nationality: American, Last Club: Brescia via Racing Santander. 26 caps and starter for Serie B side Brescia during last season. Senior Caps: 3. 7 U-20 Caps with 3 goals. MLS Club: DC United
11. Lesly Fellinga, Age: 23, Position: Left Back, Nationality: Haitian/Dutch, Last Club: SC Heerenveen. Senior Caps: 12 for Haiti, 5 Haitian U-23 Caps, and 1 Dutch U-15 cap. MLS Club: Toronto FC
12. Zoltan Hercegfalvi, Age: 29, Position: Striker, Nationality: Hungarian, Last Club: Budapest Honaved (On loan). Nearly 300 caps(73 goals) total playing with the top teams in Hungary and Sparta Prague in the Czech Republic. Senior Caps: 3 for Hungary. MLS Club: Kansas City Wizards
13. Fabio Carleandro Da Silva, Age: 29, Position: Defender/Defensive Midfield, Nationality: Brazilian, Last Club: Rio Branco. Over 300 caps total playing in Brazil for clubs like Sport Recife and Rio Branco(where he captained the side last year). Also played quite a bit in Serbia, most notably with Red Star Belgrade. MLS Club: San Jose Earthquakes
14. Andre Luiz Moreira, Age: 34, Position: Central midfield, Nationality: Brazilian, Last Club: Jaguares of Mexican First Division. Senior Caps: 19 (2 goals) with Brazil. Played for top clubs in Brazil, France, Portugal. MLS Club: San Jose Earthquakes
15. Ramon Sanchez, Age: 27, Position: Midfielder, Nationality: El Salvadoran, Last Club: Allianza FC. Senior Caps: 52(2 goals) plus plenty of youth caps. Is El Salvador's National team Captain. MLS Club: San Jose Earthquakes
16. Facundo Diz, Age: 30, Position: Forward, Nationality: Argentinian, Last Club: Platenese. Senior Caps: 0. 9 goals in 15 games with Platense of the Argentinian Second Division last season to save them from relegation. MLS Club: Colorado Rapids
17. Jamie Smith, Age: 28, Position: Right winger/Striker, Nationality: Scottish, Last Club: Aberdeen. Senior Caps: 2 with Scotland. 42 appearances with Celtic, 30 with ADO Den Haag, and 81 most recently with Aberdeen. MLS Club: Colorado Rapids
18. Leonardo Gonzalez, Age: 28, Position: Defender, Nationality: Costa Rican, Last Club: CS Herediano/Muncipal Liberia. Senior Caps: 60 with 1 goal, played in 2006 World Cup in Germany. MLS Club: Seattle Sounders
19. Julien Baudet, Age: 30, Position: Defender, Nationality: French, Last Club: Crewe Alexandra. Senior Caps: 0. Started his career with 21 caps with First Division French side Toulouse. Since then has been in the English lower divisions, especially catching on with English League One side Crewe Alexandra with 110 caps and 2 goals over the last three years. Baudet was announced the player of the year for Crewe last year but the team couldn't afford to keep him after they were relegated to League Two. MLS Club: Colorado Rapids.
20. Chris Birchall, Age: 25, Position: Central Midfield, Nationality: Trinidadian/English, Last Club: Coventry City/Brighton & Hove Albion(loan). Senior Caps: 36 with Trinidad and Tobago(4 goals), played in 2006 World Cup. Was loaned out from Championship outfit Coventry City from 2006-2009, but made 29 appearances for City and about 20 others for St. Mirren, Brighton & Hove, and etc. MLS Club: LA Galaxy
21. Walter Garcia, Age: 25, Position: Center Back, Nationality: Argentinian, Last Club: FC Rubin Kazan/Quilmes(loan). Senior Caps: 0. Garcia has good experience with over 80 caps in the Argentinian first division and also experience in the Russian Premier Division. MLS Club: New York Red Bulls
22. Ernst Obster, Age: 25, Position: Left sided attacking midfielder, Nationality: Austrian, Last Club: Red Bull Salzburg. Senior Caps: 11 with U-21 Austrian team. Over 100 caps with top Austrian sides. MLS Club: Red Bull New York

What player do you think will make the biggest impact?

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