A story out of Germany this morning suggests that U.S. international Jermaine Jones might be interested in a move to Major League Soccer.
At 31, Jones is approaching the end of his current deal with Bundesliga club Schalke. So this could certainly be a negotiating ploy. Dangling Major League Soccer as an option is a primary “go to” in the playbook for European agents looking to squeeze top euro from clubs on the continent.
On the other hand, there certainly are plenty of MLS organizations who make handy use of a hard-nosed, holding midfielder with just enough creative side.
For the most part, any club that doesn’t have Osvaldo Alonso or Patrice Bernier on its roster could consider Jones a significant upgrade in its defensive-minded, central midfield element.
That said, some clubs would be better fits that others. New York, for instance, has a dandy holding mid in Dax McCarty. While getting McCarty slightly higher up the field might be ideal, it’s probably not worth the roster shifts and the DP wages that taking on Jones would surely require.
Jones might help Sporting Kansas City replace some of the two-way, midfield bite lost with Roger Espinoza’s departure, although Spaniard Oriol Rosell seems to be fitting in.
D.C. United has a lot invested in young Perry Kitchen. Similar to New York, it wouldn’t hurt to get Kitchen further up the field (or rearrange things so that Kitchen and Jones are side-by-side as two-way midfielders), but at what cost?
Houston is well-stocked with Adam Moffat and Ricardo Clark.
But that’s about it. If your team isn’t in the short list from above, Jones would be an asset and probably an upgrade – even if it required some salary cap maneuvering and a little roster churn.