Clock is ticking for Americans in the transfer market

Clock is ticking for Americans in the transfer market

Americans Abroad

Clock is ticking for Americans in the transfer market

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                                                                      Photo by ISIphotos.com

With the deadline fast approaching for players to make transfer moves in Europe, several American standouts remain in limbo with just days to go before decision day.

Oguchi Onyewu, Michael Bradley, Frank Simek and Heath Pearce have all been mentioned as potential transfer targets this summer.

One name not on that list is U.S. Olympic standout Marvell Wynne, who has drawn interest from several European teams. Sources tell me Wynne is staying put, at least through the remainder of this season.

As for the aforementioned quartet, let’s take a look at what lies ahead in the coming days:

Oguchi Onyewu

Currently at Standard Liege, Onyewu is about to enter the final year of his current contract, meaning if Liege doesn’t sell him now he will leave on a free transfer next summer. So what’s the hold up? Standard Liege is facing Liverpool in their UEFA Champions League qualifying series, and meet on Wednesday with the winner advancing to the group stage. With Liege having held Liverpool to a scoreless draw in the first leg, Liege could pull the upset, thus making keeping Onyewu for his final season more of a possibility.

Now, if Liege bows out to Liverpool on Wednesday, you can bet that the Belgian club will be looking to sell. Italian club Lazio and Catania, as well as French clubs Lyon and Marseille, have all been linked to Onyewu. Where do I see him landing? I’d go French, and see Onyewu joining Marseille or Lyon.

Michael Bradley

There hasn’t been much in the way of legitimate information about Bradley’s transfer saga. There have been plenty of reports (some completely false, and some in the ballpark) about where he might land but as of today, Bradley is set to go back to Heerenveen. That scenario seemed like an impossibility, and I’d still put serious money on Bradley making a move.

Who is in the mix? There have been reports linking Everton, Middlesbrough, Hamburg and Monaco to Bradley. With Everton still trying to land Stephane Mbia, that leaves Hamburg and Middlesbrough among the publicly mentioned possibilities. One thing I do think has been distorted a bit in media reports is the likely transfer fee Bradley is likely to draw. A player with Bradley’s resume and just one year left on a contract isn’t going to garner a $10 million fee. If Heerenveen expects more than half that they are going to be disappointed.

Where do I see him going? I’d put the leagues in play in this order: 1. France, 2. Germany, 3. England, 4. Italy. (apologies for being even more vague before).

Heath Pearce

The Hansa Rostock defender didn’t look too good against Guatemala last week but that doesn’t mean he isn’t being sought by lower-level Bundesliga clubs. There haven’t been many reports linking him with specific teams but I include him here based on what I’m hearing and on his response when I asked him about leaving Rostock. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him move to a lower level German Bundesliga club or Dutch First Division club.

Frank Simek

The Sheffield Wednesday right back has become a bit of a forgotten man as he recovers from a serious ankle injury, but he still played well enough in the Coca Cola Championship last season to merit serious interest from bigger clubs. Aston Villa has been long linked to Simek, but recently signed a pair of fullbacks. So why hasn’t he moved yet? I have a feeling the injury has scared some teams off, though a last-minute move seems a very real possibility.

Where do you see the Americans on the market going? Think Onyewu would do well in France? Is the Bundesliga a good league for Bradley? Do you think someone will help Pearce and Simek avoid playing second-division soccer this year?

Share your thoughts below.

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