Photo by David Bernal/ISIphotos.com
By FRANCO PANIZO
PORTLAND, Ore. — The MLS All-Star Team has had a number of players drop in recent days due to niggling injuries, and you can add another one to the list.
Real Salt Lake midfielder Kyle Beckerman has been forced to withdraw from Wednesday’s MLS All-Star Game against Bayern Munich because of a knock sustained in RSL’s 1-0 win over the Colorado Rapids this past weekend. MLS All-Star head coach Caleb Porter replaced Beckerman on the roster with one of his Portland Timbers players, selecting defender Liam Ridgewell.
“Under the circumstances in losing a player at this late point in time, I felt it was best to pull in a player that wouldn’t disrupt the other clubs and their preparation this week,” Porter said. “Liam will be a quality addition.”
Ridgewell, 30, signed with the Timbers on June 25. He has started in the three matches in which he has featured for Portland this season.
Here are more MLS All-Star notes from the Rose City:
CAHILL SET TO PLAY DESPITE INJURY
Tim Cahill’s habit of fighting through injuries will be on full display on Wednesday. Even if it is just a friendly.
Cahill is currently dealing with some groin tightness that limited him to just the first half of the New York Red Bulls’ 2-1 win over the New England Revolution this past Saturday, but is still expecting to be on the field for the MLS All-Stars when they face Bayern Munich.
A knee injury prevented the Australian from playing in last year’s MLS All-Star Game vs. AS Roma – the first he was selected for since joining the league in summer 2012 – and he seems intent on not missing out again.
“I’ve played a lot of games, the groin is sore, but I want to be a part of this,” said Cahill on Tuesday. “This is all football. If it’s too much, then I’ll manage it but it’s nothing really too bad, probably just fatigue over 10 games in the last month. It’s good to be here.”
HENRY DISCUSSES DEVELOPMENT SYSTEM IN U.S.
Thierry Henry is one of the more knowledgeable players in MLS. He’s always up to date with the form of teams across the league and still has a desire to learn.
In fact, the latter aspect has seen Henry ask his teammates on the New York Red Bulls about the development system in the United States. Henry is well aware that it has produced some very talented players, but he also believes it would be beneficial to alter it to the point where younger players are practicing and playing more often like counterparts around the world.
“How you improve and how you progress is hours of repetition and work,” said Henry. “It’s kind of difficult for some of those kids sometimes because if you step out of a university at 23, 22 or 24 like you do sometimes here – in Europe, you’ll be training every day since he’s 13 years-old – so all that time that you’re losing is huge at the end.
“But somehow there are guys like (Clint Dempsey, Matt Besler) that are performing, but you’ve got to concentrate on your youth. That’s very, very important. That’s the future of the game. How you improve is time, work and repetition.”
YEDLIN INSISTS HE HAS NO PROBLEM STAYING PUT THIS SUMMER
The buzz surrounding DeAndre Yedlin since the end of the U.S. Men’s National Team’s run at the World Cup has been immense, and he again faced the question on Tuesday of if he will change clubs this summer.
Yedlin, 21, has been the subject of much transfer talk since his impressive showing in Brazil, and the rumors continue to swirl with the summer transfer window deadline fast approaching. Yedlin addressed his immediate future prior to the MLS All-Star team’s practice on Tuesday afternoon at Providence Park, stating that he is just as open to a move abroad as he is to staying put with the Seattle Sounders.
“If it’s the right situation. You never want to go to a situation where you’re sitting on the bench,” said Yedlin when asked about the prospects of playing abroad. “If it’s the right situation, you know it’s something I’d look at. If it’s not, then the MLS is a very good league and I have no problem staying here.”
Wish someone more deserving would have replaced Beckerman or do you understand the selection given the short window before the match? Think it is wise for Cahill to play? Do you see Yedlin making a move this summer?
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