Thursday, July 07, 2005

Much Freddy Adu over nothing

DC United, from the American MLS football league, is where youngster Freddy Adu plays.

He’s barely 16 but has been described in the American media as the US’s football savior. Not the touted rebirth of Pele, but similar to Shaun Wright Phillips from Manchester City.

The DC club president Kevin Payne lashed out in the media over a situation which seemed rather normal. It’s quite common to hear a club president or coach in Europe comment about how much he’d love to have a player on his side.

Target of the tongue lashing was Alexi Lalas, a former U.S. international who is the New York MetroStars club president. Apparently he said that he’s like to see the player there. Whoa.

I find this all a bit strange. The league in the USA is apparently under tight control and player movements are strictly supervised. It’s claimed to be a measure to cut costs. Salaries are also capped. Adu apparently earns in the top 5 in the league.

To make this more ridiculous the league is preparing to fine Lalas for his comments. Imagine Arsene Wenger at Arsenal or Martin Jol at Tottenham being fined for expressing interest in a player. Even better, imagine AC Milan owner and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi getting a fine.

Lalas, who I happened to briefly meet once, is an eccentric character, kind of like US Football’s version of former Formula One driver Eddie Irvine.


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Blogger Eric PZ said...

One of these days MLS will realize that any publicity is good. Instead, they like to control all the media they get and send out a series of boring corporate type Press Releases that everyone ignores. Lalas should be commended rather than blasted.

7/07/2005 11:09 PM  
Anonymous Samuel Zakowski said...

I watched Adu at the WC U20 in Holland.

Maybe he plays good in - with all due respect - the Amercian ' soccer ' league, but he wouldn't survive five seconds in Europe - sort of speak. He's too small, his muscles are like what you expect from a 16 - year old. He's just a kid.

It's good Freddy Adu wants to stay in Amercia until he's 18. He will be more mature by then - I hope.

I hope the WC U20 was a lesson for Adu. The Pepsi icon isn't half as good as Fabregas, Aliev, Mikel, Messi, Maduro etc...

He still has much, much, much yet to learn.

7/11/2005 11:52 PM  
Anonymous jboy said...

One would think the MLS, being such a young league, would operate more freely. Their tight grip on player transfers and media regulation is not helping the league at all.

Freddy Adu is just a product of the media hype machine. Granted his got skills but he's also got a very small body, no upper buddy strength, no mental maturity for the game. He's young and cannot not hang with the players of Europe. He's got a lot to learn but and I hope he realizes that and hope he joins a major european club's U-18 or reserve squad.

7/12/2005 6:32 PM  

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