Friday, April 21, 2006

When you Spill the Red Bull, it Makes a Mess

Are things ever a confusing mess with the Red Bull New York transition, both on and off the field.

Everyone I talk to within the organization seems to be in the dark. The front office is just a mess of rumor, misinformation and "I don't know". With all of the talk of Coach Mo, rumors were rampant that he was done, then it was, "well if we lose to RSL", and then it's an answer telling me Mo is staying. Some speculation is that Red Bull could not get the man they really want, and so Mo is still there. The name I have heard, but cannot get confirmed is ex-Cosmos star Carlos Alberto.

In the front office is working to put their people in place like the new managing director announced today, and a soon to be hired soccer director. There are other positions to be filled and certainly that makes those already in those spots, a touch nervous.

Over on the field things are equal mess. The French World Cup vet, Dorjkaeff and Amado have just stopped speaking to each other. Guevara has "zoned out" and the common roster player is confused and unsettled. There is also the rumor that the aforementioned french midfielder got wind of Mo's dismissal, he threatened to quit. And they traded for the Haitian internatioal Peguero for Thiago Martins, and for a 1st and 3rd round picks in the 2007 draft. Not exactly a small amount for a player that has made little impact (14 goals in 46 games) and costs you a SI slot. Question: Who made this trade?

No one can report any sort of calm on the horizon. Frankly, I find the whole thing fascinating.

Long standing MLS fans, especially ones that pay attention to such things, will have concern if RBNY decides to (re) introduce a coach or front office personal that are not familiar with the MLS way of things. As far as MLS has come in getting in line with the rest of the soccer world, it still in many, very important ways, is very different. I have to wonder if either RBNY will end up with more frustration, or will RBNY pressure MLS top brass to peek their collective heads out into the world of spending on players (i.e.: the rumored "David Beckham rule") and in turn allow teams like NYRB to acquire name players that might have a decidedly international feel.

Not So Fast There Mister...

So after I report that the naming rights to Bridgeview being sold to Toyota had fallen apart, I am now told by two different top-notch sources that it is back on... So, stand by.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Tooting My Horn

OK, I work hard to be a modest person, as my mom taught me to be. There are times though where I feel I need to wave my flag and mark my territory.

Please note that this weekend's news that Alexi Lalas is leaving Red Bull to go back to the west coast to take the AEG/Galaxy President's gig is something that I talked about back on March 8th, a full day before the Red Bull deal was even announced. So, I will be wearing a gold star on my forehead today.

The spot obviously has been open and once AEG relized RBNY would actually happen, Lalas shot to the top of Tim Leiweke's list. Despite his support, not everyone else within AEG is convinced that Alexi is up to the task at hand in LA. Being the President of the LA Galaxy is no small deal, remember he is walking into a situation where the team is defending 'The Double' and finished first in attendance. So he is stepping into a gig in a very different place from San Jose or New York. On a side note of thought: How did Sampson and Lalas get along back during Steve's national team days?

It is also important to note that Lalas is not getting this job because of the untimely death of Doug Hamilton. Remember, Hamilton had been promoted as the head of AEG Soccer (something else the NDL faithful will remember I first reported a while back) and they were going to be looking for his replacement and Lalas was always on the top of that list.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Remote Viewing

Just wanted to throw this out there. Not saying he is on the chopping block, hot seat, thin ice or whatever you would call it, BUT if John Ellinger were to no longer be the Real Salt Lake manager, I would suggest that you look out for long term MLS'er Tom Soehn as a likely replacement.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

I'm A Kit Nerd

Word is that for their final match before heading to Germany for World Cup 2006, the US Mens National Team will be sporting an all red, "Don't Tread On Me" uniform as a send off. This is the May 28th match in Hartford again Latvia. That match will be on ESPN2 at 6pm.

Friday, April 07, 2006

What's in a Name?

Looks like the Chicago Fire are having trouble closing a deal for the naming rights for their fantastic new soccer specific stadium in Bridgeview. Twice now deals have fallen apart at the last stage of the negotiation process. First a deal with a bank fell apart last year. Now this year a deal with Toyota cratered at the last minute.

The situation is so critical at this point that Tim Leiweke is getting involved. If TL has had to get involved, and given the speculation that sponsorship was part of the reason for the Peter Wilt situation, will someone else now take the fall?