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Arguez looking to get career back on track

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 Bryan Arguez just boarded a flight on Thursday that will take him across the Atlantic Ocean and he has more waiting for him across the pond than just another soccer team. He has an opportunity to salvage a career that has hit bottom just three years in.

Arguez is heading to Portugal to join his new club, second-division side Estoril, and he knows his third club in three seasons could be his last chance to live up to the promise he showed when he made his lone Bundesliga appearance at the age of 19.

"I'm excited for this move because it's a fresh start," Arguez said just before departing for Portugal. "I know I've made a bad name for myself already for the past few years and I'm getting another chance to clear my name.

"I have something to prove, but not to anyone else but myself."

Arguez is still very young, he just turned 21 last week, but he speaks like a veteran of his share of career turmoil. Sold to Hertha Berlin by D.C. United after just one season in MLS (a season during which he didn't play a single match), Arguez's European career got off to a promising start when he made his Bundesliga debut just a month after signing.

That would be his only appearance for Hertha Berlin during a tenure that grew worse and worse as he struggled to adapt to life in Europe. Disciplinary issues that Arguez admits blame for didn't help matters and he eventually found himself out of favor. After some failed attempts to secure loan deals, Arguez terminated his own contract with Hertha Berlin. The move cost him a good amount of money, but his desperation with his situation at Hertha led to the decision.

"It was pretty frustrating, but it was also my fault for not doing what I needed to do," Arguez said. "I just had to get over that stage of being unprofessional.

"I had no future there," Arguez said of Hertha Berlin. "Everything about it was bad. I had some discipline complaints in the beginning and that gave them a bad impression early on and it never really got better."

"You hear about players coming back from Europe and you think that those guys are weak because they can't stay overseas, but once you're over there you understand why people come back."

Disciplinary issues weren't limited to his time in Germany. He was one of four players sent home from an Under-20 national team camp early in 2009. The dismissal was a likely reason why Arguez was not named to the original Under-20 World Cup roster, but Arguez wound up on the roster after being named to replace injured midfielder Sam Garza.

Arguez made the most of the second chance by scoring in the U.S. team's lone Under-20 World Cup victory, a 4-1 drubbing of Cameroon. His play in the middle of the field that day, not just the goal but his movement and passing ability, served as a reminder of why he had been bought by a Bundesliga club at the age of 18. His successful tournament form was also made impressive by the fact that he wound up playing more in the Under-20 World Cup than he had played in his previous three professional seasons combined.

Arguez's success at the Under-20 World Cup served as motivation for him to start over professionally. after cutting ties with Hertha Berlin, Arguez signed with Traffic Sports-owned Miami FC, which then loaned him to Estoril. He will join fellow U.S. Under-20 player Tony Taylor, a childhood friend who assured him that the club was a good place to recharge his career.

"I'm going over there and I'm planning to get playing time," Arguez said. "It's a good place, and a good level of soccer and I'm excited to be able get going again and just play soccer."

What lies ahead for Arguez remains to be seen, but the fact that he has matured enough to acknowledge his own past mistakes bodes well for him succeeding in his second stint in Europe.


  1. Its not about drinking/partying over in europe. Its the isolation from friends, its the free time between practices and games with little else to focus on. You have very little in the way of a support group, your teammates are competing for your spot. So you cant go out with them and talk about soccer (which is all you think about). Most pro coaches are aloof and have little interest in developing young players-esp american. For an american it can be a lot tougher mentally than physically, and it can be easy to get down on yourself and the situation. Then you lose focus and your game slips… then you sign with traffic

  2. mls apparently tried to sign him from a person who is close to his rep. he would have had to go through the allocation and the team that wanted him was so far down the order they pulled out.

  3. As a DC United fan, I was shocked when Arguez moved to Hertha Berlin. He’d never played a game for DC and suddenly he was moving to the Bundesliga? I don’t think his bouncing around is any surprise.

  4. Having been an expat and knowing many other expats that have lived all over the world I can say that the issues that young soccer players face when going overseas in not because of their age or their chosen professions.

    Many (not all) expats when placed in a very foreign culture for an extended period start drinking heavily, allow work quality to slip, have extra martial affairs, etc… Think about it, all of cultural & societal norms you have grown up with and take for granted are turned upside down. Your socio-economic position has just sky rocketed. you are not treated like the everyday citizens. It can really mess a person up; punch drunk so say. I can only imagine what it must be like for these teenagers to go from normal (what ever that is) American teenage lives where they may or may not have even had a job McD’s to being professional athletes. No one over here is grooming them at 15 & 16 to be professional. They have no mentors with similar life stories develop them on the off the field stuff a kid needs to survive.

    Sorry, my soap box is about to collapse. I need to step down.

  5. What I worry about as regards traffic is that we get a situation like with Carlos Tevez, where no one seems to be sure who really owns to rights to a player and how to negotiate for that. I’m a little worried so many young Americans are signing for them. That said, if Traffic’s connections get them good shots– anywhere– I think it’s probably a good thing.

  6. well hopper, if you and your mom are so familiar with Italy then you really don’t have a point speaking out against those of us americans who have no european ties or have ever even left the country. those are completely different cultural situations

  7. Nice try, but my mom is from Italy, and I’ve spent many a summer there, and was married there, so I know exactly what it’s like. Living in Europe is amazing, and if you have the chance to do it, you’re dumb not to. Great life experience. Making a living playing soccer and getting paid a lot of money to do it … I think life would be just peachy.

  8. His (arguez’) point is aimed at people exactly like you. Unless you have lived in Europe and experienced all the cultural differences you have no idea what it is like. Perception of a place often differs from that place itself.

  9. Uh, it would be a dream to get paid to play soccer and live in Europe. It would be a dream to live in Europe and do anything! Honestly, if you don’t see that, you’re a mama’s boy.

  10. preston zimmerman has signed with mainzm in bundesliga 2. There’s an article on soccer365 that includes an interview with him. It gives an insight on how “professional” some of these clubs can be. I highly recommend

  11. Billy props to your 2011 MLS Portland squad, now get yourself a good 4 season tickets, and conveince some soccer fans to join, put pressure on the Front Office to try to replicate what Seattle did and develop a website like the one Dynamo have and then get those fools to lay some freaking SOD!

    Is it that hard to get a natural grass pitch out in Oregon?

    Does it rain that much down there?

    I don’t want to see bodody other than Seattle, they get an exemption, and maybe New England because they tend to field competitive teams no matter what and they own the stadium too, plus it will be a while until Revs owner get a soccer stadium for the Revs and it will have to have the same type of grass heating system the Red Bull Arena has.

    No more turf!

    It’s bad enough successful and storied franchises like DC United and Houston who have among the best followings and atmosphere on game day don’t have their own stadium. We need Houston at least to get their’s soon!

    Once they get it only San Jose, DC and New England will be left as far as who has their own home. Well I guess Chivas USA have a home, but they have money and it’s a suitable venue!

  12. Madison Wisc. soccer blog has Ellis wanting to leave but his contract runs to 2011. He returned from a 9 month injury to the reserves, but hasn’t played but a few minutes. He tells the interviewer that German clubs favor their own young players.

    He doesn’t sound like a happy camper.

  13. So this is what wiki has to say about Traffic Sports. They started in Brazil and have bough many players there. They set them up with smaller teams so they can showcase their talent and then if they get transferred to a bigger club Traffic Sports gets a large part of the transfer fee. They’re going to make a lot of money if they get all of the young US players that can’t make it at first and then get them to clubs where they can get minutes and get transfers to bigger clubs.

  14. There is a reason he says once you are there you understand. Living outside of the US requires an infinite amount of life adjustments all while trying to excel professionally on a team where main language is not English.

  15. Yeah Ives I was wondering if you had any information on Ellis McLoughlin? Last I heard he signed for Hertha but I dont know if he ever broke out of their reserve side. He’s a local guy and I know I would love to see him come back to Seattle and wear the rave green. Any idea on his status? Thanks.

    Oh, any Preston Zimmerman info would be nice too.

  16. how about a shout out for portland for getting the pge park deal finalized, huh ives? we like soccer out here in oregon too you know.

  17. Thanks for the story here Ives. Would like to see more of these “what’s happening with players that made the jump” in the mix like Preston Zimmerman, Ellis McLoughlin.

  18. Word was that traffic was trying to outbid SUM for the mexican national team and league rights in the US. SUM obviously won since Mexico just resigned another five year contract. SUM just strikes me as a amateur operation. just take a look at how they run Miami FC. god luck to Arguez, hope he doesnt go through what ADU is going through.

  19. “You hear about players coming back from Europe and you think that those guys are weak because they can’t stay overseas, but once you’re over there you understand why people come back.”


  20. Traffic is becoming huge! There are others like Daniel Villegas and Bryan Dominquez who are signed with Traffic. Its really taking over!


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