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Feilhaber signs with AGF Aarhus


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U.S. Olympic team midfielder Benny Feilhaber has completed a move to Danish club AGF Aarhus, leaving English club Derby County for his third European team in three seasons.

Feilhaber, who came off the bench for the U.S. Olympic team in the recent Olympic tournament, spent a disappointing season at Derby County, where he struggled mightily for playing time. His summer was spoiled by a knee injury suffered in the Under-23 Toulon Tournament in France, but he worked his way back in time to become a part of the U.S. Olympic Team.

As for his flirtation with Major League Soccer, in the end MLS could not compete financially with AGF Aarhus. Financial terms of Feilhaber’s agreement with the Danish club have not been disclosed. He now joins fellow american Jeremiah White at the Danish club.

What do you think of Feilhaber’s move? Sad to see him go somewhere other than a big European league? Think Denmark is a good place to rebuild his confidence and career? Happy as can be that he didn’t wind up with the New England Revolution?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Oranje Mike, this deal does tell us about where the league IS, but it doesn’t really say anything about where MLS is heading. The league is only 10 years old, still trying to make it’s mark in a very crowded sports landscape. I’d much rather have a slow and steady build up, rather than an attempt to build something up without a foundation, and end up with another NASL situation.

    What does say something about where the league is headed is this apparent rush to add expansion teams, and the reports that existing teams want to get more expansion fee money. That scares me a little, as it sounds a bit NASL-ish. (conversation for another time, another thread, I know)

  2. Blind, whiny, and oversensitive MLS supporters need to wake up. FOR BENNY, the move represents more $$$ over the the stingy and Byzantine MLS. IF he does well and is not called up for the national team, it will just prove once again the incestuous nature of the USSF and MLS

  3. Where is MLS headed when a club cannot compete financially with a club that was in 10th place in the Danish league? This isn’t good.

  4. Man, I wish Benny could be the player we all want him to be, but unfortunately I think that ship has sailed. I think his success has gone to his head and that he will never even develop into a starter for the US team. That said, probably a wise choice to spring for the higher paying gig. He’ll need the money when looking for a job, without a college degree, after football. Best of luck.

  5. The Danes just signed an a*&hole who’s talent is far exceeded by his antics and mouth.

    Grow up Feilhaber. You’re 15 minutes are up off the lucky Mexico volley. Now shup up and play.

  6. cam> that is the worst match AGF have played i a looong time 😉

    anyways, we here in AGF are looking forward to see what Feilhaber can bring.

    Det danish Sasliga has laterly kept on being stronger and stronger. (:

    AGF is, as i see it, btw a good club for people to invovle in playing (:

    (sry, for spellings mistakes, im only 15 – and having english as er 2./3. langue) 😉

  7. Brett, I guess I’d say it’s different in that the January window is pretty much mid-season in Europe, when you’ll have more time to recover or learn to play without a player, while the summer window goes through the end of August, which in previous years was about a month and a half from the end of the MLS regular season (although I see that this year the regular season goes a little later, to the end of October).

    My statement was more of just a throw away comment, having more to do with a feeling that the window comes later in the season, and it’s not unheard of that a team with a chance at going far in the playoffs lose a top player, whereas you don’t often see a team fighting for a championship in other leagues sell their top player. I accept where MLS is in its young life though, no big rant, I was just saying it stinks when it happens.

  8. Over-rated clap-clap-clap-clap

    Over-rated clap-clap-clap-clap

    Benny is a whiny player who thinks the soccer world owes him a living. The fact he and Eddie Johnson get callups for any U.S. side is reason enough to fire Bob Bradley and Petr Nowak. In the words of Lee Elia “How about you go out and get a job and find out what it’s like to earn a ****ing living.” Benny couldn’t get playing time at the worst EPL club in history.

    Go ahead and develop and earn your playing time. Until then, I’d rather not be bothered by this prima donna.

  9. Seriously?- why is our summer transfer window any different then euro’s Jan transfer window???

    just b/c euro teams offer the money doesnt mean the league nor its teams have to accept… if they accept they clearly see it as the ideal situation…. with Edu, the league is set to receive a 5M transfer fee…. thats a quality fee for a player thats euro bound anyhow…. any more time wasted in this league would only see his TF drop due to his contract ending soon…

  10. CAM- an ignorant statement if ive ever read one….

    blaming the departure of US players b/c of the low salary cap… money is not all that matters… going to europe the players are capable of developing themselves as players…improving our national side… etc… etc….

    the league and its teams are not stable to drastically increase the salary cap… yes the league itself is profitable, but id rather they remain profitable then to send them into debt…. slow growth is BETTER then regression…. increasing the cap and hoping that the “better” players brings in more fans consistantly and improves our odds of better tv deals is farce….

    the league needs to slowly increase the cap… up it up to 5M… but that still wont keep our stars here… our best will travel abroad in hopes to continue their growth and development (as well as cash in some bank)… the only thing inc. the cap would do is to bring in higher quality imports limiting spots for our local players that you wish would stay (but dont due to our cap)…

  11. Oh, and for the record, I want to see American players go to Europe, and do well there, I’m certainly not against it. I just don’t think MLS teams should put sending players there above winning.

    The one thing that stinks about the summer transfer window is that it seems to get busy just as MLS teams are shaping up for the playoffs, and nobody wants to lose a player, like a Kenny Cooper, at that point in the year. Although, I don’t think MLS should go to a fall to spring season though, just because that’s when central and southern European leagues play.

  12. Hey “Fire Ron Guenther”,

    Can you even fathom the notion that a professional footballer would prefer to live and play football outside of America?

    You think Columbus, Montclair, and Dallas are better quality of life living options than Munich or London?

    Berhalter and Gibbs are intelligent, decent, hard-working footballers. No wonder they’d want to have the experience of living abroad.

    Not like yourself, I’d presume.


  13. Yes! One of the most talented US youngsters and on the Olympic roster is now playing in… DENMARK?!

    Give me a break. How freakin’ far do we have to go as a nation in football when we have some of our top young talent playing in leagues that are MLS caliber or less? I can’t wait for the new player’s agreement next year so we can truly see if MLS can start making steps towards contending with some of the second-tier leagues.

    With the dollar being what it is, I’m not so sure.

  14. Noonan counts towards my point, you can leave either when your team gets an offer that they think fairly compensates them for what they’re losing, or when your contract runs out.

    I feel like there are many Americans who are of the opinion that, if any European team comes a callin’, then an MLS team should just let the player go, for the good of American soccer as a whole, and the player shouldn’t really be expected to honor his contract, because Europe is just so awesome. If you want security, sign a long term contract, if you want to be able to go when you please, sign a short one, or one with a good buy out clause. You can’t have it both ways (or you could sign a long contract, but then start fights with teammates and 60+ year old team employees, and fake injuries).

    I somehow doubt people in England thought Fergie was being unreasonable when he wouldn’t just let Ronaldo leave, when he had just signed a long and rather lucrative contract. He didn’t have to sign it.

  15. Beggars can’t be choosers. That being said if he gets significant playing time it’s the right move. I hope he stops acting entitled on the field after the slice of humble pie he ate last year.

  16. i believe Noonan wasn’t under contract so he doesnt count.

    As for Benny, I’m sure if he proved himself to be valuable they would have rejected almost any offer just like they have for tight shirt and sharlie.

    There is nothign wrong with it, but you can tell he wants to be in europe and if he regained form in NE i can only see them standing in the way from his dream to go back

  17. Career Killer. Even if he lights it up he won’t get looks from top clubs again. Simply delaying the inevitable, come home benny.

    Posted by: Fumar


    Not wanting to get TOO existential on us here, but isn’t that what ALL the players are doing before their skills erode while they’re still basically young men? Bennie’s just doing what seems like the right move.

  18. Career Killer. Even if he lights it up he won’t get looks from top clubs again. Simply delaying the inevitable, come home benny.

  19. I wouldn’t have minded seeing back in MLS, I think Steve Nicol and Paul Mariner would have been good for Feilhaber. However, playing in Denmark isn’t the worst place in the world, he’ll be paired up with another American, and its been shown that if you do well in the Danish SuperLiga you can move on to bigger and better things. Obviously, it’s a step backwards but in the end he needs to be playing and get his career back on track.

  20. This is not the club for Benny. The only reason for a young footballer with his potential to join one of the weaker European leagues is for the possibility of facing top competition. AGF Aarhus is one of the worst top division clubs in Denmark. They won’t get a sniff of finishing top 2 and qualifying for any of the European competitions. Look at their results for the last 10 years– just not worth it.

  21. I’m glad he’ll be getting some playing time and hopefully he’ll use it to put his name back out there for considerations in leagues of the major European countries. I really hope this isn’t another player lost in the Danish wilderness.

  22. His star has fallen fast, but it’s encouraging that the Danish team want to pay Derby 300,000 Euros for him (that’s a little less than $450,000) for his services. I doubt Derby would take what little MLS would offer. Considering Derby paid $1M for him 12 months ago his, it tells what a bad season can do for you.

    His ambitions are still to play in top leagues in Europe and must feel that this is the best situation for him presently to put him back on that path. Very few would make the case that the Danish league is markedly better than MLS only that it could be more visible to more European eyes.

    The most visible opportunity for Americans seeking foreign visibility is still playing for the national team.

  23. NE never lets people leave? I think you mean they don’t like to let important players go when they’re under contract. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe Dempsey left, as did Aidin Brown, and Noonan. If Benny had signed a 2 year contract, he could have played 2 years and left. I know many people want American players to go abroad to any club in Europe, because every team in Europe is better than all the MLS teams (which is not always the case), but MLS teams aren’t philanthropic organizations, they’re supposed to be in the business of winning. If the fee a team would get for a player isn’t seen as being worth letting the player go, then the team shouldn’t let the player go. I know it’s great to see Kenny Cooper playing in Europe now that Dallas let him go…, oh wait, never mind.

    As for Feilhaber going to the Revs, I never thought that story had legs. I think it came out that he was negotiating with MLS, so someone said that if he’s negotiating with MLS, then the team that tops the allocation list will get him, so he’s going to the Revs. It wouldn’t surprise me if Nicol first heard that Feilhaber was about to join his team when the rest of us did.

    Furthermore, seeing as the story came out so close to him signing in Denmark, who doesn’t think that if any contact was made with MLS, it was nothing more than Feilhaber’s agent trying to get a better deal for his client from the team he was obviously very close to signing with?

  24. I’m glad Benny’s getting playing time, but I wish it was in a better quality league. Danish soccer isn’t better than MLS. At the same time, I’m relieved that RBNY won’t have to face a Revolution squad with Benny on the field. He’s a game-changer.

  25. I think its better for everyone he stays in europe at this time. hopefully he can playing time and get back in form. If he went to NE you knwo he woudl have never left since they never let players leave

  26. Any team that’s good enough for Nando Rafael should be good enough for Benny. I was able to watch the AGF-Randers (featuring White and Nguyen) match on TVU a couple of weeks ago, and for whatever viewing one match for this purpose is worth, didn’t notice much of a difference in quality between MLS and Danish Superliga. I also recall AGF’s central midfield lacking creativity, so maybe that’s where Benny comes in. Jerry White’s game is similar Sainey Nyassi’s, so Benny deep-lying playmaker skills may come in handy to use that pace and attacking mentality of Jerry’s.

  27. this is bs, he should be in america. most americans should be playing at home, unless they are able to make a significant impact for a top euro team. i blame the ridiculously low mls salary cap and economic rules. take the training wheels off already, its holding the league and us soccer back.

  28. My thought is that Benny had his one shining moment, and now needs to get down to the business of actually playing. Preferably playing well. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen that. Let’s forget about him until he actually does something again.

  29. That’s one ugly jersey.

    Benny will continue to develop, as long as he plays minutes. I would have been okay with him going to the A-League, or Ligue 2, as long as it meant minutes.

    Him rusting on the bench at Derby was causing him to regress. Watch his play in the friendlies in early ’07, and look at him now.

    Get minutes, Benny!!!

  30. Hopefully, it will be exactly what you write, Ives: a chance to rebuild his confidence and career. Having Jerry White there will probably help him get acclimated to Danish life, and the league is one that may give him a chance at European competition if Aarhus continues to rebuild the way they have been. The league also seems to feed the Bundesliga pretty regularly, and I’m sure the better Dutch sides also keep an eye on it.

    It’s a good opportunity. Benny just needs to take it.

  31. Congrats to Benny. This is his chance to get his head back on straight and recapture his form. This experience will make him a better option as qualifying progresses.

  32. I wish he had come back to the MLS just so I could watch him play more, but I believe that this is a better move for his career.


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