Looking at DaMarcus Beasley’s evolving career situation, and the odds of an MLS return

3 Comments

It appears that Herculez Gomez is not the only Liga MX-stationed U.S. internationals on the move.

Reports are out this morning that talks have broken down between Puebla and DaMarcus Beasley, which has resulted in the 31-year-old midfielder – Or should we call him “defender” based on his recent, successful appearances for Jurgen Klinsmann’s national team? – being put on the Liga MX club’s transfer list.

So he could move within Mexico or he’s free to move elsewhere. The man has played professionally in six countries already, so clearly there’s not fear factor when it comes to changing of national address.

All that said, don’t bet on a return to MLS.

We know these things can and do change, but when Marc Stein and I talked to Beasley late last week for Sundays’ Soccer Today podcast, it certainly didn’t sound like a return to his starting line league was even in Beasley’s thoughts. (The Beasley interview begins at about the 38th minute of the link; but if you back it up a few minutes, you’ll be treated to the smooth voice of Ian Darke, and who can’t use a little more of that in their life?)

WhatBeasley said about the contract negotiations that were happening at the time:

I would like to stay in Mexico, and hopefully we can make that happen. … I feel comfortable there. The teams, they know me there. I feel very comfortable in Puebla. The city, the people. I love my experience there.”

Recalling that it all started for Beasley as a Chicago Fire man back in 2000 (he was property of the Galaxy first but never made an appearance), I asked if Major League Soccer would, at some point, become a larger consideration. I know we all love to think that our domestic heroes will complete the circle and finish up the league, prodigal son-style. But …

If I did end my career in Mexico, so be it, if it happens that way. As far as MLS, I don’t see myself coming back to MLS, but you never know.”

VIDEO: Celtic’s 1st minute goal breaches PSG

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Celtic still have hope of advancing to the UEFA Europa League, but have a new feather in its cap regardless of whether they hold their table advantage on Anderlecht.

Moussa Dembele became the first UEFA Champions League player to score against Paris Saint-Germain, when he side-footed a first minute corner kick off PSG backstop Alphonse Aréola.

[ FOLLOW LIVE: Champions League scores ]

Neymar would score just eight minutes later to level the score at the Parc des Princes, but Celtic had its moment and PSG is no longer unbreached despite entering the match with 17 goals scored, conceding zero.

2017 CONCACAF Awards shortlist revealed

AP Photo/John Raoux
Leave a comment

The 2017 CONCACAF Awards shortlist is up, and fan voting counts.

Jozy Altidore, Clint Dempsey, and Christian Pulisic are among the nominees for Men’s Player of the Year. Philadelphia Union’s Jamaican backstop, Andre Blake, is also on the list along with Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and others.

[ MORE: Big American Soccer Survey results ]

The Female Player of the Year is predictably American-heavy, with Alex Morgan, Carli Lloyd, Becky Sauerbrunn, Julie Ertz, Megan Rapinoe, Sam Mewis, and Tobin Heath competing with a trio of international players.

Tim Howard is the only American up for Male Goalkeeper of the Year, though Blake is again in the running. The female side has American backstops Adrianna Franch, Alyssa Naeher, Ashlyn Harris, Jane Campbell, and Nicole Barnhart.

The full ballot, including Best XI, coaches, referees, and goals, is up for your votes here.

UCL: Chelsea advances vs. 10-man Qarabag (video)

AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin
Leave a comment
  • Chelsea into knockout rounds
  • Willian draws two penalties, scores two more
  • Hazard, Fabregas score

Willian scored two goals from the run of play and drew a pair of penalties in Azerbaijan, as Chelsea beat 10-man Qarabag 4-0 on Wednesday.

His second goal was a fantastic thump from atop the arc, and further iced the result in the 85th minute.

[ MORE: Champions League standings ]

Qarabag hung tough for the first 20 minutes, but saw its odds of getting a point take a hit with a penalty and red card.

Rashad Sadygov made contact with Willian inside the 18, and Portuguese referee Manuel de Sousa awarded a penalty. That was understandable, but surprisingly he produced his red card to send Qarabag down a man.

Eden Hazard converted his low penalty, wrong footing keeper Ibrahim Sehic, and Chelsea took a 1-0 lead in the 21st minute.

Willian would score a goal of his own in the 36th, part of a terrific team goal with Hazard and Pedro.

The Blues were largely content to let Qarabag have the ball early in the second half, but resumed control around the hour mark and Sehic made an outstanding stop on Hazard before substitute Alvaro Morata dragged a shot wide of the far post.

Willian drew a second penalty in the 71st minute, as Maksim Medvedev tugged on the Brazilian’s jersey on a dribble into the 18. Yellow card for this foul.

Cesc Fabregas scored but two Chelsea players infringed on the 18 thanks to the shooter’s stuttering — and stopping — PK. He finished the second as well as the first. 3-0.

Willian added the fourth with a vicious strike five minutes from the end of scheduled play.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

World Cup-bound Saudi Arabia fires coach Edgardo Bauza

Photo by Octavio Passos/Getty Images
Leave a comment

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) World Cup-bound Saudi Arabia has fired coach Edgardo Bauza nine days before the draw.

The Saudi Arabia Football Federation announced the Argentine coach’s exit after only five friendlies in charge. The team lost to Portugal and Bulgaria this month.

[ MORE: Big American Soccer Survey results ]

Bauza has been fired twice this year by teams in the World Cup lineup. He lost the Argentina job in April, after eight months in charge, when the two-time World Cup champions risked missing out on qualification.

In September, Bauza was appointed by Saudi Arabia to replace Bert van Marwijk, who was fired despite leading the team to its first World Cup since 2006.

Saudi Arabia joins Australia without a coach for the World Cup draw in Moscow on Dec. 1.