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Americans Abroad: Monday Rewind

Clint Dempsey (Reuters)

Clint Dempsey returned to action on Monday, playing 90 minutes in Fulham's 2-0 win vs. Hull City.

Dempsey had been sidelined due to a shoulder injury, but looked fully fit in making the start. Dempsey's U.S. teammate, Jozy Altidore, came off the bench and played 21 minutes for Hull City, which remains in the relegation zone after the loss.

A U.S. national team-eligible player did find the net on Monday.

Leeds United left winger Bradley Johnson, who earlier this month revealed that he is eligible for and interesting in playing for the United States, scored in Leeds' 2-1 win vs. Norwich City. American-born Leeds forward Mike Grella dressed, but did not play in the match.

In Denmark, U.S. midfielder Benny Feilhaber started and played 90 minutes in AGF Aarhus' 1-0 loss to Sonderjyske. Jeremiah White dressed but did not play for Aarhus.

What did you think of Dempsey's performance? Beginning to worry about Altidore's time at Hull? Does the prospect of Bradley Johnson joining the U.S. national team pool intrigue you?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. So what? So were the next 7 (and probably more) but under the Constitution they are all citizens of the United States, regardless of the status of the country at the time of their birth.

  2. I don’t have to have a reason for disagreeing with your subjective opinion of the quality of play in League 1. I’ve watched League 1 and MLS too, and I don’t think there’s a very dramatic difference.

    And, as we both agree, I’m not saying he’s good enough to play regularly for the national team, but I do think we should take action in case it turns out that he is.

  3. “Dempsey had been sidelined due to a shoulder injury, but looked fully fit in making the start.”

    Translated, he jogged around the field, and stayed in the middle of the park as much as possible.

    Unless Bradley plays him in a withdrawn forward role behind Jozy or Ching, or Casey, Dempsey doesn’t deserve to start over Holden.

  4. I think his position is idiotic, just not necessarily bigoted solely because he wants Americans and Americans only on the team. I don’t think he ever mentioned a certain race, that’s your projection sir. If he supports a litmus test beyond birth (which again, is stupid) then those claims are certainly legitimate.

  5. Um, dude. Reading comprehension is your friend. I even added a “/sarc” in case it wasn’t patently obvious the point I was trying to make (the opposite of how you took it).

    I guess to be even more obvious: I am NOT calling you any of those things, but calling out those who DO throw those words around for people who think differently and even bring up legitimate points (like yours). That is, that you are NOT a bigot/xenophobe/etc. to voice questions about guys who have no allegiance or link to the U.S. other than an uncle-on the-mom’s side-three generations-back, and wants to play in the World Cup.

    I reiterate, personally I don’t give a damn as long it helps the USMNT. When we get to the point where our entire team is a bunch of mercenaries, then I’ll have concern, but I don’t see that happening any time soon or ever.

  6. Actually the first seven presidents of the US were American….:) Just kidding you…:)

    My mother is a naturalized American citzen and I often marvel that she is more American than most native born citzens…

  7. Thanks for the FIFA rules (which BTW are way more lenient than I presumed).

    But I think you’re wrong on the first 7 presidents being British. They were all of British descent, but all were born on American soil and thus were American citizens under the Consitution. Martin Van Buren (the 8th president … which is why I think you’re confused) was the first one not of British descent. His ancestors were Dutch.

  8. Disagree for what reason? League 1 or the third division of English football is not that good of a league. I’ve been to many games in that league and can vouch for that. Never know if they are promoted how good he will do in a higher league until he is tested. Many players don’t fair that well when they are promoted to a higher league. My point is you can’t judge the talent of a guy playing in a lower league like that when he is not playing against top flight competition. So your right we don’t know how good he is, but I tend to think, knowing English football like I do, if he were top flight he wouldn’t be playing in thr third division. Yes there are a few late bloomers/overlooked players such as Geoff Horsfield who can go from the Conference to the EPL, but they are far and few between.

    If earns a call-up so be it.

  9. Also, to paraphrase something US international Fred Grgurev once said to me, when you carry the flag all over the world for the United States, you’re American.

    I don’t think anyone would represent a country if he didn’t feel a connection to it. And how much more of a connection to it would anyone feel with thousands of his adopted countrymen cheering him on?

    And let no one forget that the first 7 presidents of the US were British.

  10. Feilhaber made the SAS Ligaen Team of the Week again (for the fourth time this season) after his performance Monday. Too bad for Aarhus they couldn’t finish any of the chances he created, then got sucker-punched by a goalkeeping error in injury time.

  11. Ok, here are the rules regarding eligibility (from

    Any Player who refers to art. 15 par. 1 to assume a new nationality and who
    has not played international football in accordance with art. 15 par. 2 shall
    be eligible to play for the new representative team only if he fulfills one of the
    following conditions:
    (a) He was born on the territory of the relevant Association;
    (b) His biological mother or biological father was born on the territory of
    the relevant Association;
    (c) His grandmother or grandfather was born on the territory of the
    relevant Association;
    (d) He has lived continuously for at least five years after reaching the age
    of 18 on the territory of the relevant Association.

  12. Can someone educate me on how Johnson could be eligible to play for the USMNT? He says his “father’s side” is American, but the article suggests the closest U.S. citizen in his family is his grandfather. I’m pretty sure that alone would not qualify him to play for the U.S. (or would it?). Anyone know how he would qualify?

  13. It could be because I mostly watch the Revs and they play on turf, which really damages the quality of play. But even so, I’d still tend to disagree with your assessment.

    Anyway, who knows how good he actually is. But, he could be really good. It is League 1, but he’s scoring a lot of goals, and I’d certainly want to see him in camp, and get him locked into the US team as soon as possible. He’s only 22, and he’s very likely to be starting in the Championship next year.

  14. I wasn’t a big fan of Jozy going to Hull when it happened. Phil Brown is not a good manager and I’m betting he’s sacked before Christmas. Hull will be in a relegation fight all season, and are likely to turn to battle tested veterans to keep them up. The fact that they signed Venagoor of Hesselink will make it even tougher for Jozy to get into the team.

  15. Also, I’d like to see you name any of these fringe players you talk about, and then hear you say they would have scored all those goals Altidore has this year, also the ones for Hull, also the amazing one for Villareal as soon as he stepped on the field in EXTREMELY limited minutes.

    Name him.

    I’m sure I’ll laugh my @ss off!

  16. Players that do well in MLS don’t automatically get a call up either – in fact their share of USMNT spots is relatively small these days considering where most Americans play professional soccer. Asking the question another way, would Stuart Holden and Robbie Rogers, who many consider to be strong candidates for 2010 (in midfeild where Johnson plays), but not locks, be big time players in League One or above? IMO, they would be at least as good in the Championship as Convey was at his best, and he was pretty good at level before the injuries hit. In Holden’s case, I think he is already a better all around player than Convey ever was. We’ll get a pretty good feel for this soon when the rumor mill for Holden’s services heats up. More possible comparisons: Birchall in lower level English pro leagues vs. Birchall in MLS (just OK, as far as I can see, comparable to Kovalenko, not as good as Magee), early reports on Grella coming out of college, etc. No easy answer, but safe to say, I think, that being a decent League One player should not earn a quick call up to a USA camp by itself.

  17. “I predicted adu and Altidore both failures. At the moment I am clearly 50% right. and within 24 months of 100%” posted by advocat.

    Dude, Adu is 19 years old and is one of the few American players to be on a team abroad. Most 19 year olds don’t start in the MLS, and Adu could definitely go back there and get minutes. He already has. He is not injured, and is training. Therefore he is much more likely to be successful for the national team than any “skipped over players” or “more deserving U-20” players. He has already scored an incredible goal for the senior USMNT. His corners are often impeccable. He is still developing and should have a future. Declaring him a failure does not make him a failure.

    I predicted that your prediction skills suck. At the moment, I am clearly 100% right.

    I now predict that Advocat is an idiot. With my track record, it is likely I will be 100% right from self presented evidence by Advocat today.

  18. Jozy Altidore was born in New Jersey. If you’re going to go to the trouble of making an ideologically flawed argument, at least get your facts straight.

  19. I have to disagree the third division of English football is not to the standard of MLS. I have been an MLS season ticket holder and been to many 3rd and 4th division games in England as my mom comes from Mansfield (near Nottingham). I would rate MLS as high second division/low EPL in standard.

    I would only call him into camp if he rates a callup.

  20. Johnson does not not strike me as a likely nat. One does not qualify for US citizenship through having an American grandparent (unlike many European countries). Unless he started the process of citizenship a long time ago, he is years away (if ever) from any consideration…

  21. bradley johnson’s grandfather was American… idk kind of pushing it, but if the rules allow it he should be eligible to train with the USA.. if we need him. right now attacking mids; Dempsey, Donovan, Benny, Torres, Holden, Rogers, etc. not a chance he makes it to the World Cup.. but keep the number in USSF’s address book

  22. Advocat…you are straight nutters mate… Adu and Altidore would have started on all 4 of those teams… While I agree the U20 team was shambles… they did play in the toughest group and also have beaten Costa Rica who got to the semis… Altidore is 100% American and Freddy is as well. They both have no accent, they both act like college aged kids (twitter and all that) Give them time to grow..Freddy may be hindered by his size but Altidore…the sky is the limit.

    PS: I have also played at the highest levels growing up and only bad knees keep me from still playing… your comments are just way off and on the border of trolling/wind-up merchanting…

  23. I wish this Bradley Johnson thing had come up before the Gold Cup. Now we have to wait until 2011 to get him his first irrevocable cap. Although it’d be nice to see him called into camp.

    Also, I don’t think League 1 has a terribly worse standard of play than MLS. And at least they all play on grass (irrelevant I know, but I just hate astro-turf)

  24. Whose opinion must be qualified here? Played soccer my whole life; and still do at a competitive level. (Was coached by someone who played and coached at the highest level in Europe and who held the highest coaching licenses in the world). A MLS season ticket holder for 10 years. Attended innumerable games in europe. Played for a top university team (that defeated Indiana at its prime). Father who played for one of the greatest clubs in the history of soccer. Other than that, my concepts are with any merit.

  25. Either Advocat is a 10 year old or he has to be the biggest douche on Ives’ board. EVER. There, I said what everyone’s been thinking over the past 2 days.

  26. Jozy is the man and a fine American to boot. That goal in the CC Semi’s to knock Spain off their high perch after not playing club football for 6 months was awesome.

    Fulham and Clint did what your supposed to do against Hull at the Cottage.

    Another Bradley on the USMNT? Heads will explode.

  27. Right, no need to harangue him if he has a different opinion, but fair game if that opinion drips of bigotry and assumes that you’re devotion to the country relies on being fully anglicized. What is your definition of a true American, guy? Born here, speaks English, would die for the flag or something? Should he be white? From his comments, it sounds like Advocat wants only players that were born here and played in non-immigrant based communities to play, and that requires some explaining.


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