Photo by ISIphotos.com
BY DYLAN BUTLER
WASHINGTON, D.C. – As news of Oguchi Onyewu's move to AC Milan on a free transfer reached the U.S. National Team here, Charlie Davies couldn't help but be excited. Yes, he's thrilled for his Confederations Cup teammate, but seeing an American player go to one of the world's biggest clubs he thinks can hopefully break down barriers for others.
"Gooch signing with AC Milan opens a lot of doors for Americans and makes a lot of clubs realize that Americans can play," he said after the U.S. training session Tuesday morning at RFK Stadium. "Hopefully now younger guys coming up can have a dream that they can play at Madrid, they can play at Milan because now Gooch has been able to break the barrier."
After a breakout performance in the Confederations Cup, Davies' stock is on the rise, as well. The Hammarby striker has drawn interest from Ligue 1 sides Rennes, St. Etienne and Sochaux.
"For me it's definitely exciting to hear all these clubs talking about me and wanting me for my services," Davies said. "At the moment, I'm just focusing on the national team and continuing to have success with this team. Hopefully everything will sort itself out soon."
Onyewu will become the first U.S. national team player to play in Serie A since Alexi Lalas played for Padova in 1994-95.
"It's a fantastic move for Gooch,its great for American soccer players," Steve Cherundolo said. "We wish Gooch all the best. He certainly deserves it. He had an excellent tournament in South Africa and has played solidly the past few years. I just want to congratulate him."
Onyewu, who played at Standard Liege for five seasons, also drew interest from Ajax, Real Madrid and Fenerbahce.
"It's very exciting," Bob Bradley said. "It's one of the great clubs in the world. Certainly, the experience that he'll get there will really be important as we move forward with our national team."
What do you think of the move? Will it open doors for other Americans. Who would be the next likely candidate to go to a European giant? Share your thoughts.
Onyewu in A.C. Milan? Its like when I goof around with the transfer mode in FIFA 09.
Here’s what I ususally do
Landon Donovan – Manchester United
DaMarcus Beasley – Liverpool
Jozy Altidore – FC Barcelona
Carlos Bocanegra – A.C. Milan
Oguchi Onyewu – Real Madrid
Freddy Adu – F.C. Porto
Tim Howard – Bayern Munich
Steve Cherundolo – Chelsea FC
Charlie Davies – Inter Milan
Clint Dempsey – Arsenal
Ricardo Clark – Everton
Brad Guzan – Bros. Dortmund
Michael Bradley – Juventus
Maurice Edu – Paris SG
Brian McBride – Arsenal
Claudio Reyna – Barcelona
Eddie Pope – Liverpool
John O’Brien – Manchester United
Keep in mind though, i went into edit player mode and boosted their talent.
As a former resident of Milano and a longtime Serie A fan (not a Milan supporter by any means – FORZA INTER!) I think Gooch has a shot at getting some playing time. It all depends on how much faith Leonardo has in the big guy and also what the injury/bookings situation is with the other Rossonero CB candidates.
There is *immense* pressure on Milan to improve their performance in Serie A after being second fiddle to Inter (hehe) for at least three years running. And some of that pressure will probably fall on Onyewu’s shoulders – because he will be tested by a certain Zlatan Ibrahimovic (which is probably one of the main reasons Onyewu is now at Milan – a big defender to try to throttle the equally large Swede) amongst other brilliant attackers. The level of quality of opposing forwards in Serie A is quite a bit higher than in Belgium (no insult intended to that fine league, but hey – this is Serie A, no playing around!)
The fact that Onyewu performed commendably against the likes of Villa, Torres, Toni, Fabiano and others during the Conferations Cup is a good sign. Now he’ll have to do it week-in and week-out. No days off – even the small ‘provinciale’ sides in Serie A have at least one dangerous striker. The will be zero ‘days off’ for Gooch in scudetto play.
So good luck (he’ll need it) to Onyewu – for 36 of his 38 Serie A matches anyway! 🙂
All the EPL freaks are on the loose dissing Onyewu. The fact that Milan, Inter, and Real showed interest can’t penetrate their thick skulls. Go Gooch.
You are incredibly naive and foolish if you truly think that I boo the national anthem. Every morning during homeroom I saluted the flag of a country that isn’t mine. I know all the words to the star spangled banner and have the an unbelievable amount of respect for the country that has allowed me to become the person I am today.
That doesn’t mean I’m going to support the USMNT.
I pay taxes, I’m a volunteer coach with the local leagues and when I can, I volunteer at the local hospital.
As far as the Marquez/Gooch comparison….well there is no comparison.
Marquez was voted the best defender in France when he played for Monaco and has been one of Barca’s best players for a few years now.
You couldn’t be more stupid when it comes to the game of soccer if you tried.
Clear and simple, no matter how good Claudio Reyna was his turnover play cost us a chance at the second round. He should not have tried to beat a player or play with the ball at all when he is last man back (my U-9 team knows that). Did he hurt himself making that ill advised move, or when he was phantomly kicked? The United States will not only become the best team in soccer within a few cups but they will save soccer by playing like men who do not fall on the ground and hurt their team trying to play on the sympathy of the ref. You don’t see it in american football or basketball because that is how men play (and even women athletes for that matter). Claudio like many American players was mentally ruined by his time in Germany where he learned to dive and fall (i.e. Dempsey) I will always criticize any american player who takes a dive or who lies down hurt to the detriment of his team and that is my lasting impression of Reyna. He should have apologized to the team like Beasley did when he turned the ball over on the corner kick. He should know not to sacrifice the team in exchange for the ref’s sympathy.
Playing like he did in Belgium and the Confed Cup make him a “world class” player. Shitty Marquez plays in Barcelona and he is no better than Gooch. You want to talk about whiners Christian. Look no further than your fellow Mexican fans. Mexico is horsepoo and you know it. That’s why you pansies get all worked up when Americans do well. Please take your two well paying jobs and go back to Mexico. You are the type of fan who boos the American team and curses the anthem in the United States. I have no respect for your type. Please go away. I’m through responding to an ignoramus.
Of course he’s not guaranteed a spot on the roster, but I think he will be on the roster and I think he’ll start and I believe he’ll be successful, because he’s an excellent world class player. He’s proven it at the Confederations Cup, at Standard Liege and by suiting up for the US National team 47 times. Yes, I realize there is no “guarantee”, but I believe he’ll do fine.
I like this move a lot even if Gooch gets played only sparingly – the practice sessions will be great for him. He has improved his ‘on the ball’ skills quite a bit in the last couple years but this will force him to really step up his game not only on defense but also in stabilizing things coming out of the back.
At the elite level everyone needs to have great control and passing ability. You just can’t give the ball up cheaply by getting rattled at the first sign of pressure. We all see what a difference there is when we go deeper in the bench. An improvement in this area (team wide) will give us much more consistency against the top tier.
hush and some others….you just don’t get it, do you…..if only it were that easy. no one is “dawging” out gooch. just because he has accomplished what you reference and just because he is a defender and “that is what ac milan is built on” does not guarantee a spot as a starter (or a spot on the bench), let alone success. there have been many other players, lots of them better and more accomplished than gooch, and they have left labeled a “bust. i am pulling for gooch BIG TIME as his success at ac milan can only mean good things for ac milan, the USMNT, american soccer players, and ultimately, gooch himself. all that said, he has a VERY BIG challenge ahead of him and for you or anyone else to say that he is going to be a success based on the things you have mentioned, is to be getting way ahead of yourself.
LOL some of you are as delusional and fickle as Michael Jackson fans.
I said it before but it bears repeating, I don’t hate the US or their players. It’s people like Dolan, that makes other people not want to support the USMNT.
It was a simple question, what has Gooch done on the field to be considered a world class player?
None of you numbnuts have been able to answer the question and you know why? Because he is not a world class player.
He’s obviously a quality player and Milan think highly of him but he still has to prove himself.
Next time, I’ll bring a box of kleenex for all you whiners out there that are so desperate for world recognition that you get upset when someones disagrees with you regarding your team and players.
By the way, I support Mexico because it’s my country, I live in the US, have two degrees and well paying job.
None of that changes the fact that I will always root for Mexico.
Screw all of you generic, attention craving cretins.
Viva Mexico cabrones!!!
I thought that Donovan was free to leave in the winter transfer window. Am I wrong on that? I agree with an old post saying Donovan will force his way out if he isn’t free to go. The problem is that the transfer fee is so high and a lot of teams won’t pay it.
I never thought the U.S would be the cheap labor!lol With that said, I’m so hyped to get my Gooch MILAN jersey!
Let us not bother with the mexicans any longer! We are done with them and we are moving on to better things!;)…. A rivalry is someone who beats you equally!…. mexico hasn’t beaten us at any stage or tournament in almost 8 years!lol So I don’t consider them a rivalry any longer!lol TRUE!!!
We are preparing ourselfs to be better for the future and some day win the W.C. That’s our work as a soccer nation. I see it happening in 2018-2022! I said it here folks!
time to buy GOOCH AC Milan jerseys!! wowowowow
I have wasted a good portion of an hour reading this whole damn debate and here is my take. Gooch is a great player and one of my favortie for the USMNT. But I have been having trouble holding back my vomit every time I read Christian’s posts. While many of your points, Christian, are EXTREMELY valid, your childish remarks to insult those who you have engaged in debate make you sound more foolish than your probably are…sucks for you (see?)
According to this morning’s Gazzetta, Milan are paying him (a free transfer) 700,000 Euro a year, pointing out that he’s making less than a third of the 2.5 million his predecessor (Senderos) made. If that’s true, it would have made him the lowest paid player on Milan’s senior team last season. (Not sure though if they’ve done any restructuring, as has been rumored, for the upcoming year.)
Nesta (4 million) and Kaladze (3.7 million) have deals that take them through 2011. Thiago Silva’s deal goes until 2012 and is rumored to be at 2.5 million per, after they paid Fluminese 10 million Euro for him. Bonera, who everyone seems to be putting Gooch ahead of already, made 1.8 million last season and last month signed a 3 year extension.
This isn’t my opinion, or hating or bashing him or anything else. These are the (rumored) numbers. Its nice that he’ll get an opportunity and hopefully he can seize it, but to assume that they’re handing him the keys to the backline is ridiculous. They have ABSOLUTELY NOTHING invested in him and if he struggles early, may disappear. Its a very, very dicey situation.
He’s “worth” whatever the highest bidder would’ve paid for him. So if someone were to spend 15 million euros (you suggested that price) for him than I’d assume it’d be one of the top tier clubs.
and I agree with many of you. This world class debate is rather pointless as we all have different definitions. Better question is if he is top 15 center back in the world. My opinion is no.
This is definitley a good move for him though and he will see good playing time.
i think what Christain meant to say was that if Onyewu had few years left in his contract and was worth around 15 million euros, would AC Milan or other big clubs bought him. I think he’s answer would be no and I would agree.
Does Christian really think Onyewu is playing for free?