Off-Season Player Rumors & Movement 2013

Discussion in 'Philadelphia Union' started by UnionBulldog, Sep 25, 2012.

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  1. Dills

    Dills Moderator Staff Member

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  2. KensingtonSC

    KensingtonSC THAT, MY FRIENDS, IS JUST INCREDIBLE

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    This team doesn't need a DP (even though we have one in Adu) to be successful. Look at Kansas City and San Jose this year. If we can make upgrades at key positions with current MLS players either through free agency or trades, then we can be very competitive next season. If we could bring on 3 more players than can bring to this team what Brian Carroll brings to it, then we will be in good shape.
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  3. chapka

    chapka Member+

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    What San Jose and Kansas City each have is a player in the last year of his contract who expects to be either a DP or in Europe next year (in Chris Wondolowski and Roger Espinoza). If that's the model you want, the Union has been doing it from day one, by signing promising youngsters to four-year contracts.

    The question is, in 2015, are Chandler Hoffman or Cristhian Hernandez going to be one of those hot young players bound for Europe? And if they are, will the Union sign them as DPs, let them play out their last season for a championship, or sell them off for the transfer fee?
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  4. derek750

    derek750 Member+

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    I have us at 8-8-4 (1.4 PPG) in MLS since Hackworth took over on June 16th. That would put us between the Whitecaps (1.31 PPG) and the Crew (1.53 PPG) in terms of level of performance this year (which would leave us a few points away from the playoff race in the East).


  5. KensingtonSC

    KensingtonSC THAT, MY FRIENDS, IS JUST INCREDIBLE

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    So Wondo's only playing well because he's in the last year of his contract. OK, then how do you explain his production over the previous two seasons? Was he just performing for 2012 when his contract would be up? I don't follow that logic at all. The guy has led the league in scoring over the last 3 seasons. It's not like he's just having a breakout year this season.
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  6. derek750

    derek750 Member+

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    Also, Wondolowski signed a new contact earlier this year:
    http://www.sjearthquakes.com/news/2012/02/wondolowski-inks-new-contract-earthquakes

    SJ may give him another bump after an MVP season, of course, but he doesn't have a whole lot of leverage.
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  7. KensingtonSC

    KensingtonSC THAT, MY FRIENDS, IS JUST INCREDIBLE

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    Exactly. Unless Europe comes calling, then he's staying in San Jose with the contract he just signed. If Europe didn't want him in the summer window when he was absolutely on fire, then they're not coming in January, either.
  8. Doop

    Doop Member+

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    His contract was a one year deal (at least that's what John Harkes said on SiriusXM last week) at just under DP status. Based on valuation he's estimated to be able to grab DP money at about $1 million US if he stays next year.
  9. derek750

    derek750 Member+

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    Very interesting. Why would SJ give a player more money without at least locking in an option year at an increased salary? :confused:

    Wondo's salary history:
    2012: 300K
    2011: 175K
    2010: 48K
  10. riot71

    riot71 Member

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    he also complained how a soccer player can't live on 48k.
  11. Dills

    Dills Moderator Staff Member

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    He never said Wondo's playing well because he's in the final year of his contract. He said he's performing well, a legitimate MVP candidate, and just happens to be in the final year of his contract (which he's not). Therefore, any contract renewal (which already happened in February) would've had Wondo saying "show me the money".

    But that's neither here nor there.

    It's a moot point. You know, like a cow's opinion.
  12. UnionBulldog

    UnionBulldog Member+

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    I just talked to someone in my office who has his son playing on the same team as Nick S. and he really doesn't think that Le Toux is an option to come back. Also, Nick S. is 'across the pond' scouting forwards. Not sure if it will result in anything but at least it is something.
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  13. UnionDues

    UnionDues Member+

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    Wow, I think you're getting way ahead of yourself. The only player out of our crop of youngsters that has consistently demonstrated a high level of play has been Okugo, and there are a lot of other players out there that play his D-mid position. Incidentally, it may be better for his career if he continues to play at CB, since good central defenders are in short supply these days. If Tim Ream was good enough to get picked up by Bolton (and I think Ream is awful), there's a good chance that Okugo will find overseas interest as well. He's a much better defender and his distribution is just as good.

    Mac has shown good off the ball movement and a nose for goal. However, he's easily frustrated and, like most strikers, has shown himself to be prone to lengthy dry spells. His passing has certainly improved since he's been starting regularly, and while that's not a top priority for someone who plays his position, he should continue to work on it. I think he'll eventually be a very good garbage goal specialist like Wondo is, but he is not consistent enough yet to get looks from top Euro clubs. He is still young and has time to get there. Perhaps he will even be a USMNT bubble player at some point.

    Guys like Hoffman and the HGs are not going to get picked up if they are not seeing regular minutes with the first team. Hoffman, in particular, was an early draft pick that should be showing us a lot more. He hasn't done anything useful in his first team minutes, other than a pass to one of his teammates that registered an assist in Toronto. Zero goals, zero assists, and zero shots on goal in 198 minutes. There has been plenty of criticism for Torres on here, but in 142 minutes this year, he still has two assists!
  14. chapka

    chapka Member+

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    I never said he was only playing well because he was in the last year of his contract.

    What matters is, San Jose didn't go out and buy a proven goal-scorer from another MLS team. They made a trade for a promising but untested late-round draft pick who, at that time, had been in MLS for four and a half years and scored four goals in 37 appearances. They then signed him to a long-term, low-money deal, of which he's now in the last year.

    Wondo made good and got better--but at the end of this year, San Jose are going to have to make the call to sign him as a DP or let him go on a free. And he's very publicly asked for a million dollars a year to stay. And at that point, San Jose either becomes a DP team or a much less dominant team.

    My point was that saying San Jose can do well without a DP is only half the story. San Jose right now has a DP-level player who isn't getting a DP salary, because they caught the right player at the right point of his career four years ago.
  15. Dills

    Dills Moderator Staff Member

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    I know he's injury prone, will turn 30 next season, and said he'd never play for Nowak, but Piotr is gone so what about bringing in a true LM - and local lad - in Bobby Convey?

    Le Toux and Laing are merely placeholders:
    [​IMG]
  16. derek750

    derek750 Member+

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    This doesn't make any sense given that Wondo has received massive (for MLS) salary increases each of the last 2 seasons. If he's in the last year of his contract (which he might well be), someone in the Earthquakes front office is asleep at the wheel.

    Do you have a link for Wondo's contract expiring this year? See this post from another thread that seems to indicate SJ has options to 2016.
  17. chapka

    chapka Member+

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    Well, that's the point, isn't it? If you want to win without going out and buying recognized talent, which means DP money and cap problems, your only option is to go out and sign young talent to four-year deals and hope they're peaking in year three (so you can sell them) or four (so you can ride them to the playoffs).

    The idea that you can judge a player based on 200 minutes is a little silly. And if it was that simple to judge a player's potential based on their performance at age 18 or 20 or even 22, we wouldn't need Generation Adidas.

    For what it's worth...in 2008, Chris Wondolowski was a few years older than Chandler Hoffman is this year. It was Wondolowski's fourth year in MLS. He only got 125 minutes that year; 0 goals, 0 assists, 0 shots on goal. Houston though the way you're thinking, and they traded him for Cam Weaver.

    Meanwhile, McInerney is scoring about a goal every 200 minutes this season and about a goal every 200 minutes for his MLS career. That's better than Kenny Cooper's 2011 or Thierry Henry's 2010. It's better than Landon Donovan, Fabian Espindola, or C.J. Sapong did this year playing for much better teams. It's better than either of Landon Donovan's first two seasons with San Jose, playing in a much weaker league.

    It's also better than Chris Wondolowski managed in his first three years in MLS, or his first four years, or his first five or six years for that matter.

    Now, I'm not saying that any of these kids are going to be the next MLS superstar. I'm just saying that if you want to follow the San Jose - Kansas City no-DP model, you need to sign young players and try to develop them. And with very few exceptions, those players are not going to put up Lionel Messi numbers, or even Alan Gordon numbers, in their rookie season. Getting frustrated with young players and dumping them after one season is a good way to end up like Toronto FC, getting scored on by your ex-players every week.

    On closer examination, you may be right. Wondolowski has been very public recently about wanting DP money next year from San Jose, which I assumed meant his contract was up--but I can't find any confirmation one way or the other. Wondolowski doesn't use an agent, so just about anything is possible.
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  18. derek750

    derek750 Member+

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    Thanks, chapka. I know it's tangential to your point but I was curious once the issue was raised.
  19. billf

    billf Member+

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    In San Jose, $48k may as well be minimum wage... It doesn't get you very far in this area either.
  20. Zman Gunner

    Zman Gunner BigSoccer Supporter

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    http://www.philadelphiaunion.com/news/2012/10/meet-trialists-matt-kassel

    Nowak would be livid if these "Meet the Trialists" reports were ever posted on his watch.;) With the reserve game streaming, the Daily Doop and these type of trialists articles, Kerith Gabriel has given the team's digital media a much needed shot in the arm.

    As folks debate the expensive player/DP vs. young player MLS team building approach, I would say that the league leader - San Jose - uses a different, more blended approach which has a heavy focus on getting players with MLS experience so the team knows what the players can do specifically in MLS - they also know that these players are generally not national team caliber players so they will not be heading overseas for a bigger paycheck in a bigger league in the near future. While there are a few of the Quake's main players who were brought from outside MLS (CB - Bernardez, AM - Dawkins, AM - Stephenson although he had earlier MLS experience) or the college ranks (LB - Morrow, RB - Beitashour, CB - Opara, CM - Baca), the majority of its core players were acquired from other teams in MLS (F - Wondolowski, F - Gordon, F - Lenhart, RM - Chavez, LM - Salinas, LM - Ballouchy, DM - Cronin, CB - Hernandez, LB - Corrales, G - Busch) with Yallop and Company already familiar with their body of work although some (i.e. Wondoloski, Gordon) of clearly found their niche with San Jose.
  21. billf

    billf Member+

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    Gordon has been a pretty solid MLS guy for a while. He doesn't have great skills and he's scoring more now than ever, but that guy's staying power and perseverence has been remarkable. He's made the most of just about every opportunity he's earned. This isn't to say he's been a major contributor, but look in to his background. The guy has turned himself into a solid pro and has been a model teammate. The goals he's getting are all a bonus. He'd have been a fan favorite here for sure.
  22. mattylip

    mattylip Member+

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    Stuart Holden was at PPL Park on Tuesday for the reserve game. I assume that there would have been some discussion of him coming to play for the Union, even if in passing. With Bolton languishing at the bottom of the Championship table and Owen Coyle out, Holden's days with Bolton may soon be over.

    What's the consensus? Would Holden be a good pickup or is he another oft-injured project like Soumare?
  23. Darkwing McQuack

    Darkwing McQuack BigSoccer Supporter

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    Wouldn't Houston have rights to him if he tried coming back?
  24. billf

    billf Member+

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    Even if they didn't he'd still be subject to the lottery.
  25. Darkwing McQuack

    Darkwing McQuack BigSoccer Supporter

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    True
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