Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Tony, Harry, Freddie and Stalteri too... the ramblings of TG!

English teacher beware... this is a bit of a single paragraph craziness. It's been quite a week for soccer movers and shakers in the last week. First off, Juande Ramos get fired at Tottenham, seemingly only hours later, Harry Redknapp takes charge of Spurs leaving Portsmouth high and dry and on Monday Tony Adams officially takes over at Portsmouth. Okay... I think that's all the moves. One man is likely not going to get fired this year (other than the big name boys) would be Hull City Manager Phil Brown. With a quarter of the season gone, Hull have 20 points and sit 3rd in the English Premier League table. I would dare say that they could theoretically lose every game they have left and still stay in the English top flight. Spurs should improve with the hiring of Redknapp. It also means that Canadian Paul Stalteri has been given a lifeline to first team action. While playing and training with the reserve squad, Stalteri has been call a "model professional" and that can only show him to be a "team guy". Stalteri has been very kind to me in my professional career and I hope that Tottenham do the same for him. Tony Adams meanwhile has taken the helm for Portsmouth and if anything, it is providing another Englishman a chance at being a Premier League manager, something that is currently lacking in the English game. Here in North America, we could possibly be losing an Englishman, as it appears that David Beckham is on his way to AC Milan on loan from the LA Galaxy. According to published reports, he would be back for the beginning of the MLS Season, but once Beckham gets to Italy, he may not want to return. If it came to buying out his contract, Beckham is one of the few athletes who could buy his own contract out and go to whichever team might have him. Losing one underwear model in the MLS means that another one needs to arrive, so Freddie Ljundberg will be arriving for the 2009 season with the Seattle Sounders F.C.. Just down the I5 from Mike and I in Vancouver. I know Mike already has his Calvin Klein's ready to be autographed. For Seattle, it's a move that soccer fans will respect, a big name that can still compete, especially in the MLS. It also has a little Beckham to it. He's good looking, foreign and models underwear with the best of them... meaning, single Seattle women and soccer moms will also be appearing at the games with the Ljundberg jerseys. A good signing for Seattle, who at present look like they have the buildings of a quality first year team. Ljundberg on the wing or in the middle and former USA National team and Fulham goalkeeper Kasey Keller. He'll provide leadership and a good attitude. I also wouldn't be surprised to see Keller in a coaching role once his playing days are finished. Finally... MLS expansion is getting heated up. 7 teams in the running, people with various ideas on who will get a franchise and who won't. Montreal seems to be everyone's pick as the one city that WILL get a team. The 2nd team is up for debate. I have and will go on record saying again here saying that I would love to see the Whitecaps getting an MLS franchise. Whether they get one will soon be told, but something in the back of mind keeps telling me no. It would be sad for Vancouver, but I can't say that there seems to be an outcry from Vancouver fans wanting to discuss it.

And that's a wrap...

- TG

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