Top Stories

Mid-Day Ticker: Henry tops Castrol Index, Zidane gets new Madrid role & more

Henry (Getty Images)

For the third straight month, Thierry Henry tops the Major League Soccer Castrol Index.

Henry maintained his status as the league's top player according to the metric. George John, Nat Borchers, Landon Donovan, Omar Gonzalez, Chris Wondolowski, Ugo Ihemelu, Alvaro Fernandez, Donovan Ricketts and Jeff Parke follow Henry, respectively, to round out the top 10.

The rankings take into consideration games played through June. Henry has already carried over his form into July, scoring in Wednesday night's victory over Toronto FC. He leads the league with nine goals.

The ranking of all 412 MLS players can be seen here.

Here are a few more stories from around the soccer world:


Former France and Real Madrid great Zinedine Zidane is set to be announced as Madrid's sporting director on Monday.

Zidane, a former three-time FIFA World Player of the Year, had been a consultant to Real Madrid president Florentino Perez. He played for Madrid from 2001-2006, winning the UEFA Champions League title with the team in 2002.


The World Football Challenge has announced the final game on its summer slate, and that game will be Juventus taking on Chivas de Guadalajara at Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh, N.C., on July 28.

No more matches will be added to the 14-game tournament, which kicks off next Wednesday when the New England Revolution hosts Manchester United. The entire WFC schedule can be found here.


Former Manchester United defender John O'Shea will accompany Wes Brown to the Stadium of Light after signing a deal with Sunderland.

The Black Cats signed Brown to a deal earlier and the day and managed to nab its second Manchester United veteran. Both players signed four-year deals with Sunderland, who is thought to be after Manchester United midfielder Darron Gibson as well.


What do you think of the latest Castrol Index? Think Zidane will make a difference in Madrid's front office? Which WFC games do you plan to catch? How do you think the signings of O'Shea and Brown affect the defenses for Sunderland and Manchester United?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. I was about to say… Rimando is a great MLS goalkeeper and is right with there with Ricketts.

    Also will Nat Borchers phantom foul and red card on that horribly called game against New England end up hurting his ranking? There should be a ranking for refs too.

  2. If Henry tops the list you must gets points for turning the ball over to your opposition, then pointing to the spot you think your teammate should have run to.

  3. So which of the top 5 players on this list and the European list are not execeptional players Alex?

    I agree that trying to rank players who play different positions is indeed a fools errand.

    Ranking players according to position is not

    Henry is the best FWD thus far, this season in MLS

    John is the best CB thus far, this season in MLS

    Ricketts is the best GK thus far, this season in MLS

  4. oh, so the Castrol ratings are infallible? The FIFA rankings are very similar… Great predictor as well… Remember when the US was ranked 5th in the world before the 2006 World Cup? And how well that went for us? Yeah, rankings are always reliable… George John is the next Marapelemessinaldo.

  5. also tied with a few others. I know Brek Shea has all of his from the run of play. I think Davies and Donovan are the other two but they have PK’s.

  6. I think one of Bob Bradley’s greatest faults is his player selection. Even given the fact that he has to deal with the MLS and the foreign teams, which is a black art, it seems, when it comes time to release players to the USMNT, Bradley has done an awful job at it. The selection of defenders in the Gold Cup..? BORNSTEIN!! and Ream, who, to be fair, needs more experience were place over the likes of Omar Gonzales and several other defenders who all have better Castrol ratings.

  7. C’mon Patrick just admit that John and the rest of those CB ahead of him on this list(like Gonzalez) are MUCH MORE CONSISTENT.

    That doesnt make Ream a bad player but it certaintly makes him less desirable for our national team…unless of course you dont mind losing…?

  8. So what would be a meaningful indicator of talent and potential according to you?

    Team success, consistency, goals, highlight worthy play, or your opinion?

  9. Personally I think he looks like Dave Chapelle!

    Fact is Henry is a great player. Not sure why some hate on him.

    Maybe we can say hes going for the Rick Ross look because everygame he’s hustling!

  10. Flawless logic! I also have my own ratings system — The Jonk Index — and it finds Messi to be the best player in the world, therefore whatever I say about any other player is incontrovertible truth!

  11. my take is look at the # of minutes played. There’s a significant gap between ream and John. John’s logged about 450 more minutes than ream which equates to 5 games… 5!!!! Yes, Henry has played in fewer, but when you look at how its calculated, the goals and assists have blows his number up, an advantage neither ream nor John have.

  12. Uhh, I think you’re conflating me with all the other commenters that have ever responded to your George John hyperbole. The few times I’ve replied to you I’ve just laughed at your claims that John is the best CB in MLS and on par with Rossi talent-wise.
    Anyway, I stand by my statement above that being a highly ranked defender in the Castrol Index is not a meaningful indicator of overall talent and potential.

  13. Called into January US camp, missed it due to injury. Recently called into a Greek training camp. He hasn’t been capped by anyone yet. If he’s legit I imagine he’ll get a look in the September friendly in LA. Or he’ll get called up by Greece for their Euro 2012 qualifiers on Sept. 2nd and 6th.

  14. Yes because Ives has consistently underatted John* and needs to dismiss any and all evidence that points to John, in fact, being the s*it

    Seems to me the Castrol system and in Europe. Messi is the best player there. Henry is the best here. John is on his heels though and If Dallas could figure out how to get in a decent corner with any sort of consistency John would be #1 already

    *Yes Ives I know you praised John at the rookie combine…where he played out of position and was at 75% after just having major knee surgery. Things you probably didnt even know at the time.

  15. Thanks boosted! George John is a solid player, regardless of whether one agrees with how he ranks. Someone remind me, is he capped with USMNT, or was there talk of his Greek ancestry? What happened there?

  16. The Castrol Ratings are awesome…D.C. United doesn’t have a player better than #73 in the league in form. The third leading scorer in the league comes in outside of the top 100…

  17. Thanks for being reasonable for once Jonk..while your at please explain how Ream (THE best american talent according to you) can be ranked so much lower than John, Borchers, Gonzalez, and even Ihemelu when they all play the same position and against the same opposition?

    Maybe its because the dont give extra points for the awesomeness of Reams threaded passes?? I dunno just trying to help you.

    My guess is its because those players DO NOT MAKE THE # MISTAKES Ream does and John tops the list because he doesnt make any.

    But whats your take?

  18. Um, nobody can honestly say that Henry doesn’t deserve the top spot. He is the most reliable goalscorer in all of MLS.

  19. …further evidence is Fernandez. He’s in the Sounders’ top ten players, but probably towards the middle/bottom.

  20. To be fair, Henry has been doing what a forward should — scoring goals and picking up a few assists. And I can even understand how John or any other CB could be ranked high when you consider what the rankings are based on. It’s the way people want to use these rankings to claim one thing or another that is most absurd.

  21. zomg!!! best player since Rossi! the whole Castrol index is a joke, and having a 1,2 of henry and john proves it.

  22. George John at #2 in the Castrol Rankings? Quick, somebody post a grainy youtube highlight montage to show me how awesome he truly is…


Leave a Comment