Electric L.A. forward Gyasi Zardes deserves a look with the USMNT

7 Comments

There’s a Los Angeles Galaxy attacker that deserves a chance from Jurgen Klinsmann, and his name is not Landon Donovan.

He’s Gyasi Zardes and, from the shock of yellow hair on his head to his electric skill set, he is begging to be noticed.

[ MORE: L.A. Galaxy 3-1 Portland Timbers: Keane’s brace keys win ]

There aren’t an abundance of big, young American strikers with finishing finesse and Zardes, frankly, has been among the most dominant players to wear the Galaxy crest this season. The 22-year-old stands 6-foot-2 and, if not for Robbie Keane, he’d be an easy No. 1 pick as the most impactful Galaxy attacker of late.

Zardes, 22, showed the aforementioned skills against Portland on Saturday afternoon with a six-shot, one-goal performance, but it’s his powerfully-headed goal that should get him into Klinsmann’s conversation (at the very least for January camp).

How does he get that open (besides poor defending)?

The U.S. is facing a busy few years on the men’s soccer circuit, with a Gold Cup, Copa America Centenario and Summer Olympics qualifying slate heading its way. They will need plenty of attacking options, and Zardes has made his case. Now let’s see how he can perform for the States.

“Gyasinho” has eight goals in 17 games this season, with just 11 of those appearances being starts. Seven have come in his last eight games, as Zardes has reaped the reward of playing alongside a red-hot Robbie Keane.

With his size and speed, Zardes is the sort of player who will draw the attention of European eyes. Here’s hoping the first pair belong to Klinsmann (or at least the American-Uruguayan eyes of Tab Ramos)

Soccer world reacts to the Manchester attacks

Peter Byrne/PA via AP
Leave a comment

NBC News is reporting that at least 19 people have been killed and another 50 are injured following a possible suicide bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.

Multiple senior U.S. intelligence officials who are monitoring British authorities told NBC News that preliminary reports indicate that a single explosion took place outside the arena on the southwest side opposite the train station. The explosion occurred as the concert ended, catching people as they exited.

Soccer clubs, players and personalities around the world are reacting to the horrible event.

Juventus purchases Cuadrado from Chelsea

Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images
Leave a comment

If you didn’t realize Juan Cuadrado still belonged to Chelsea, you’re forgiven.

The Colombian attacker will complete his second season at Juventus after the UEFA Champions League Final against Real Madrid, and won’t be headed back to Chelsea afterwards.

Juve has purchased Cuadrado, and the fee is $22 million, and Juve will pay it over three seasons. Cuadrado, 28, is now signed through 2020 with The Old Lady.

Cuadrado first went on loan to Juve in Aug. 2015, and has eight goals and 18 assists in 83 career appearances with the club.

Chelsea bought Cuadrado from Fiorentina for around $32 million in the January 2015 transfer window, but made just 14 appearances with the club.

Report: Jermain Defoe meeting with Bournemouth

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty images
Leave a comment

Sky Sports is reporting that Jermain Defoe may head back to the south of England following Sunderland’s relegation.

Defoe, 34, spent two seasons with Portsmouth between 2008-09, scoring 15 goals in 31 appearances.

[ MORE: ‘The Moment’ of each PL club’s season ]

The 56-times capped England striker had a clause in his Sunderland contract allowing him to leave the Stadium of Light were the Black Cats to be relegated, as they were this season. He’d have little interest in dropping into the Championship given his desire to stay a part of the England squad ahead of the 2018 World Cup.

Bournemouth’s strike corps includes Joshua King, who scored the most goals of any player not on a Top Seven side this season. King’s 16 goals were one more than Defoe’s 15, though the latter scored just one goal following a brace against Crystal Palace on Feb. 4.

Chelsea’s Conte wins pair of top managerial honors

AP Photo/Frank Augstein
1 Comment

Antonio Conte took league and national honors from the League Managers Association on Monday night.

The Chelsea boss was named Premier League Manager of the Year and Manager of the Year after leading the Blues to the PL title and an FA Cup Final in his first year on the job.

Brighton and Hove Albion boss Chris Hughton nabbed another Championship boss of the year award after leading the Gulls to the Premier League. He also won the honor with Newcastle United in 2010.

The League One winner is Chris Wilder of Sheffield United. Wilder won the honor with Northampton Town last season.

In League Two, Paul Cook of Portsmouth was named the winner.