With Edson Buddle on the shelf for a few more weeks and possibly more, the Colorado Rapids look to be getting forward Danny Mwanga from the Portland Timbers for a first round pick in the 2015 draft.
The Rapids would be Mwanga’s third team. The Philadelphia Union took the Zaire-born talent who moved to the United States in 2006 with the first pick in the 2010 MLS SuperDraft. He scored 12 goals in 61 games for the club before getting traded to Rose City in the middle of last season. He made 18 appearances, netting three goals, during the disappointing campaign in his adopted hometown.
It’s possible that the move could help the forward find his form. He has struggled to figure out a place in Philly and Portland, needing the ball to create and not getting it enough. That said, Mwanga still has the pace and skill to succeed and more in the Rockies. Buddle’s absence, combined with the Rapids’ overhaul, will mean there is a place for the forward who is still only 21. The question is can he take advantage? (It’s not a great sign that the Union and the Timbers have already given up on him…)
Speaking of Caleb Porter and Gavin Wilkinson — we were, weren’t we? — rumors are flying that they plan to announce the signing of forward Frederic Piquionne, who is perhaps best known for scoring the 10,000 goal in Premier League history when he was with West Ham. He’s an interesting acquisition, a player with plenty of talent but one who is getting up in years. How do we think his 34-year-old knees and joints will fare on the artificial turf at JELD-WEN? We shall see. We shall see.
Middlesbrough has impressed at times during its return to the Premier League this season, and now the club looks to bolster its backline as the transfer window closes.
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The club announced the loan signing of Arsenal defender Calum Chambers on Tuesday, providing the Boro with a promising young player to contribute in the back.
Chambers, 21, has made 58 appearances in the PL with both the Gunners and Southampton, while also earning three caps for England.
Middlesbrough manager Aitor Karanka revaled his excitement over the signing, while also stating that the player addresses a big need on the backline.
“I’m really pleased,” said Karanka. “It’s a position where we’ve been working towards bringing the right player in. We haven’t been in a hurry because Calum was the player we were waiting for, and he’s going to help us a lot.”
The Gunners have been heavily criticized for not spending enough during the transfer season, however, Arsene Wenger has gotten the man he wanted to help out defensively.
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Arsenal announced the signing of Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi on Tuesday, after the German centerback had been previously been linked to the club for some time as their top transfer target.
Mustafi will likely figure immediately into the Arsenal defense, which has also added Rob Holding this summer. The 24-year-old made over 64 appearances for Valencia while in La Liga after beginning his academy career in England with Everton.
Hope Solo hasn’t had the best couple of weeks since the U.S. Women’s National Team bailed out of the 2016 Olympics.
On Tuesday, the U.S. keeper announced her decision to take a step back from her club team as well after receiving a six-month ban from U.S. Soccer.
The veteran American shot stopper took to Twitter to make her decision known, leaving her status unknown with the Seattle Reign in the future. Solo remains under contract until the end of the current campaign, however, it is not known as to how her decision to sit out will affect her financially.
Solo wil be eligible to return to the USWNT in February, but it will be up to head coach Jill Ellis to reintroduce the 35-year-old into the fold.
U.S. Men’s National Team and LA Galaxy forward Gyasi Zardes will miss the rest of the MLS regular season with a broken bone in his right foot.
It was initially believed on Monday that the U.S. attacker could be out until the end of 2016 after suffering the injury in Saturday’s 0-0 draw against the Vancouver Whitecaps.
Zardes was taken down by Whitecaps defender Kendall Waston during the latter stages of the match, with the Costa Rican apparently catching the inside of the 24-year-old’s foot, ultimately causing the injury.
Because of his extended absence, Zardes was ruled out of consideration for the USMNT squad ahead of their upcoming CONCACAF World Cup qualifying matches vs. St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad & Tobago.