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MLS Ticker: Besler attracting ‘enormous interest’ overseas; Castillo suspended; and more

Matt Besler

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Following an impressive World Cup campaign, Matt Besler’s future at the club level could be decided soon.

The Sporting Kansas City defender is garnering “enormous interest” from overseas clubs in England, Germany, and beyond, Sporting Club CEO Robb Heineman told the Kansas City Star Thursday.

Besler’s agent Eddie Rock told the newspaper the 27-year-old Overland Park, Kan., native is weighing three options which include a contract extension with Sporting KC, a move to the English Premier League, and a transfer to Germany’s Bundesliga. Rock says a decision will probably come within the next 10 days.

“If Matt re-signs with the league now, his intentions would be to be a one-club player for the rest of his career. His goal would be to finish atop Sporting and the Wizards in all-time appearances and longest captaincy. He would try to build a dynasty there,” Rock told the Star.

Besler has spent six years with Kansas City dating back to 2009. The 2012 MLS Defender of the Year is making $200,000 in this season, which will increase to $220,000 in 2015. Per MLS rules, if Besler is indeed transferred, Sporting KC will receive two-thirds of the fee, with the league retaining the remaining one-third.

Here’s more news from around Major League Soccer:


FC Dallas forward Fabian Castillo has been suspended four games and fined for an altercation with an official following a June 11 match against the Portland Timbers.

The MLS Disciplinary Committee announced the decision Thursday after Castillo appealed the suspension through the MLS Players Union. The suspension includes “two games for the red card for violent conduct and two additional games by the MLS Disciplinary Committee,” according to the press release.

Castillo’s suspension will run through July 27. The forward will be available for regular season play on Aug. 3 when FC Dallas travel to play Chivas USA.


The Chicago Fire have sent another Designated Player packing less than a year after acquiring him.

The Fire announced on Thursday that they’ve loaned forward Juan Luis Anongono to LDU Quito in Anongono’s home nation of Ecuador for a six-month period. No other details of the loan were disclosed by the Fire, though LDU Quito claim on their website that the loan is for 12 months.

“Both the club and Juan were looking for an option for him to gain consistent playing time,” Fire head coach Frank Yallop said in a statement. “The loan has been in the works for a while now and both parties agreed that it is best that Juan return to Ecuador for the next six months and continue to play full matches. We’re looking forward to keeping tabs and monitoring his progress.”

The stocky, bruising forward signed with the Fire on July 23, 2013, but combined to score just four goals and one assist in 28 games played for the club.


The Montreal Impact announced Thursday that homegrown player Jérémy Gagnon-Laparé has signed a professional contract with the MLS side.

The 19-year-old midfielder has trained with the first team since the start of the 2014 season, while making five appearances in the PDL and two in the MLS Reserve League. Gagnon-Laparé made his professional debut on May 7 in the semifinal of the Amway Canadian Championship.

Gagnon-Laparé joined the Impact’s academy in 2011 and just recently graduated from the U23 team. Internationally, the midfielder has appeared four times for Canada, all in 2013.


Real Salt Lake has joined the mix of MLS teams playing in summer friendlies.

On Thursday, the 2013 MLS Cup runners-up announced that it will play host to Club Tijuana of Liga MX on Aug. 12 at Rio Tinto Stadium.

Club Tijuana finished eighth in the Mexican first division last season, and while the club has lost Americans Herculez Gomez and Edgar Castillo during the offseason, the Xolos still feature three prominent American names including Greg Garza, Paul Arriola, and Joe Corona.

Real Salt is 14-8-7 against international opposition, including 3-4-2 all-time against Mexican teams.


Do you see Besler making the jump to the EPL or Bundesliga? If so, how much should Sporting KC sell him for? Do you agree with Castillo’s four-game suspension? How do you see Real Salt Lake fairing against Club Tijuana?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Gonzo, Besler, need to go to Europe now, latest 2015 and yedlin is overrated but you never know.
    By 2018, I wish we have a NUMBER 10 and two NUMBER 9s.
    I said this before, USA will always have goalkeepers and a tough defense but USA needs a number 10 and 9.

      • Gonzo is good in the air and with his length he’s also good at the spectacular last ditch stretch slide tackle but he has terrible feet and cannot play out of the back which will hamper progress to better possession. I think there is a place for him on the USMNT against certain teams and in certain situations but I can tell you that I held my breath every time he had the ball inthe Belgium game.

        It’s interesting to note that two of the smaller, better ball handlers, Besler and Ream are both left footed, as is Brooks who may combine the best of both defensive worlds (tall with good feet). I don’t know if there is anything to the left footed, right footed CB business but I note that Brooks was Besler’s backup and Gonzalez seemed to be the interchangeable part with Cameron.

  2. Since we basically have a Foreign-based USMNT and a MLS-based one, I want Gonzo, Besler, Yedlin, and whoever else to go to foreign clubs if possible and make room for more new MLS guys on the MLS-based USMNT.

    • Yup. From the KC Star:

      “If Matt re-signs with the league now, his intentions would be to be a one-club player for the rest of his career. His goal would be to finish atop Sporting and the Wizards in all-time appearances and longest captaincy. He would try to build a dynasty there,” Rock said.

      “The biggest factor with a potential move is do they provide a bigger ceiling for Matt’s development as a player? Would playing in the EPL or in the Bundesliga bring him to an even higher level as a player simply because you’re playing against the top players in the world on a daily and weekly basis?”

      Translation, as I see it: Pay Besler *close* to EPL money, and he stays home with family as a one-club man. The transfer fee necessary to pry him away seems unlikely for a known product, 27yo CB.

      Yedlin, on the other hand… speedy guy who kept up with Hazard, plus upside.

    • I am partial to Germany or Holland. They both produce youth players. Besler would be a finishing project almost completed. Either country would complete his development and then make him world class.

  3. Besler and the WC in 2018. Klinnsman the likely coach. Mix that formula = Bundesliga and starter. New contract in MLS = Brooks starting. I would stay out of England. England and German leagues are fast, but the German league slows down enough for tactics to work.

    • Brooks continues his path and he will be starting regardless and Besler could be too. I dont buy the whole left footed needs to be on the left and all that

  4. Besler needs to make the jump across the pond now. 27, just had a great world cup, this is probably his last best chance to get a big contract. He should go wherever they offer the most, unless he’s sure he’d have a tough time playing. In that case, he should take the next best offer. He’s paid his dues in MLS. A little sad such a talented and consistent performer has made so little playing here. Go get paid Matt!

    • I really hope the cap goes up so all guys get paid more and great defenders deserve more. What a bargain at 200K

      • *Inter and Roma, that is.

        Anderlecht seems like the strongest possibility at the moment.

      • I would be totally fine with a 20-yo going to Belgium. Great place to work on technique, hopefully get decent PT for two years, then a transfer to Germany or France by 2016… dreams of the ideal.

      • I don’t like putting over hyping the talent we have but I like putting it in perspective. Yedlin is better and has more upside than Parkhurst and Chandler, every sign is pointing to him even being way better than Dolo at this point that why I think he should go to the Bundesliga he’s already passed Belgium at this point.

    • Cardiff is a joke. Yedlin needs the league with discipline and tactics like the Seri A or Bundesliga. If we went to Spain he’d just run by everyone.

      • Yedlin may have to deal with a lot of racism in Serie A though. I want him at Sporting CP. They have knack at development and are in Champions League. If they sell Cedric I could see something worked out. Especially since there is already some sort of dialogue between clubs in the past because of Montero

      • Sorry, I was thinking about Besler, not Yedlin.

        Yedlin’s going to Roma via loan makes no sense.

      • Actually the Roma and Genoa thing for Yedlin is something that I have seen bandied around by that Di Marzio guy or whatever his name is. Then I saw that it was just Genoa,

        I would like to see him go to a different league though I could see why a lot of Serie A teams would want to take a chance….its not like that league is loaded with FB talent

  5. Is there a worse team for signing very poor designated players than the Chicago Fire. This is 4 or 5 busts on the trot. A coin toss would give you a 50 50 chance of picking a winner. It takes work to be this incompetent.

    • Makes you wonder why they dont make a play on guys from Europe who looking to move our way. Why keep trying to strike gold with these players with less proven track records.

  6. Sounds like he’s heavily trying to lean on KC to give him the big bucks to stay. Can’t blame him for wanting to get paid while having not leaving the comfort of home, but I think it’s worth testing yourself at the highest level.

  7. Dating from 2009 is 5 years. Even so, after 5 years at the club Besler is earning $200k this season. He will get a $20k raise next year. IF it is true that the BPL and the Bundesliga are interested why is his agent talking so much about him staying at KC and setting team records and all that kind of stuff?

    Something seems off.

    • I think that Besler wants Omar or Zusi money (Omar is a DP, and Zusi was the first to take advantage of that new rule designed to keep top Americans in MLS).

      • Then he should get it from KC, for sure. Heck, he was the MLS defender of the year in 2012 and they are paying him peanuts. A 10% raise to $220k, what a joke. It puts a bad rep on the MLS.

      • The thing is that KC is not bereft of talent and signing him to a multi year deal is a good idea but at the same time selling him and using that money to get other things is smart as well.

        Sporting like Seattle is in a good place with their transferable targets in Yedlin and Besler. They dont have to listen to any half baked offers. They have the luxury of keeping them.

        Yedlin needs to go abroad and if he wants a large salary now then it would need to be right now.

        If I was Seattle I would cash out on Yedlin while the getting is good and it would be better for Yedlin as well. Besler Im 50/50 on if SKC should actively pursue a deal.

    • Just to give you some perspective Brek Shea, in his last year at Dallas, made more than Besler would even with a 20K raise.

  8. He seems a grounded young man. I think he has been great for the national team. If he goes abroad I hope he gets to start.

  9. I don’t think it will happen. The MLS will probably demand too much money from him. I think he gets paid peanuts for a guy of his ability as well so why would anybody want to let him go?

  10. If Besler goes he can always come back, and to a higher salary than 220K i would bet. But, he may never get a chance at as large a contract overseas as right now.

  11. The Fire probably have some high school kid they need to sign as a “home grown” to take Anangono’s place. They keep releasing players and signing no one.

  12. Besler…PLEASE go to a more technical league like Spain’s or Germany’s. Look at what happened to Tim Ream (and what happened when you went up against Lukaku…granted, late in the game)…the EPL is a physical league, and with Besler being smaller in statue than most central defenders, he would be great in the Italian league, for example. Your brain is your biggest asset! Go to a league where its best put to use.

    Now Gonzo though? he’d be perfect in the EPL or Championship.

    • Wait a minute.

      Lukaku ran over Besler like a linebacker on an interception return runs over a wide receiver trying to stop him. Granted Lukaku in both cases had the angle on him and he was fresh while Besler was probably puking his guts out (or wanted to).

      Lukaku does that to everyone.

    • Besler did get bossed around by Lukaku, but in fairness he is probably never gone against such a specimen. Given time he can learn to defend bigger guys.

      • Who doesn’t Lukaku run over? I mean, the kid won a scoring title at 16 in Belgium for a reason. He is a man beast of a physical specimen. It would take Gooch in his prime to match up physically.

      • Or Brooks in a few years. I think Brooks will be the guy that Gooch was supposed to be. We were unlucky with Gooch but I have a good feeling about Brooks. Not just because of the WC either. I have said this for a while.

        I see Brooks with one more year at Hertha and then one of the mid to top tier clubs calling up for his services. His height and athleticism plus his experience at his age is a commodity. Heck I could see Hertha trying to striker while the iron is hot. His last month at Hertha was good with a Bundesliga player of the week and he looked legit for the national team when given the opportunity.

      • Typo. My bad. Does he start, or does Brooks push by him regardless. Tough couple of plays against Belgium, but the dude has balled out the last couple of years.

      • Especially since Besler is relatively quick for a CB. So he could lose a step or two and be fine since his positional awareness seemingly is always improving. I think the CB position in 2018 will be highly competitive with 4 or 5 guys vying for the starting nod. Especially if Brooks can get towards his ceiling, because he could realistically be a very good CB almost anywhere if he reaches his peak. Thus you would have numerous guys vying for one position,

        By the way I do hope Brooks reaches his ceiling, or close to it. With his athletic and technical ability (shown some very good passing at times) he could become on of our best ever. 6-5″/6′-6″ with athleticism. If he can get the nuances of the position down he could become a stalwart.

  13. Besler, Gonzalez, Yedlin, Green, and Fabian Johnson should all go to Sunderland. That way team USA can win the premiere league.

    • Hehehe. Let’s take it a step further… are there any rules in place that actually prevent the USSF from buying an EPL team? Staff it up with USMNT players and prospects (along with a few Yank-friendly vets to keep us up), and have them playing and getting paid by a revenue earning entity year round? Can we skirt these rules? Anshutz might be willing to foot that bill…

      I kid.. Sort of.

      • Well, there are work permit rules, so the USMNT players will likely qualify, but “prospects” probably won’t.

        Having said that, most clubs in the EPL will not look too kindly on a Yank invasion, even if the alternative is bankruptcy.

      • Good answer. Germany? Holland? (Guess they don’t care for foreign ownership either)… What about Italy? Heck, even if we had a Serie B team, is it any worse than leaving our guys to the devices of ever-changing management as they often encounter elsewhere in Europe? Is this idea as insane as I thought?

      • Sure, but most of those work permit rules are based on appearences for the national team.

        Is this vertical or horizontal integration?

      • Vertical integration naturally.

        I would go for a top tier Serie A team and build them a stadium. Only Juve own their own stadium at this point. Let the fans choose the name of the stadium and run the club normally. Then send top tier american talent without telling anyone why. It will be suspicious as heck and can be an open secret.

      • Beautiful. We can set the whole thing up under the name Gulati Bros.Olive Oil and whenever people start askng too many questions we’ll just tell them that import/export is a tough business to predict but we think their new shipment of Giusppe Rossi’s will be in arriving any day now.

    • Actually that could be a good, top league landing spot for Yedlin to to get into. Adam Johnson the RM loves to cut in thus Yedlin would be able to occupy the space left wide. In addition, through watching Sunderland almost every game, I saw that their fullbacks are coached to get up in the attack. Both Bardsley and Marcos Alonso were in the attack almost all the time. Obviously one or the other was staying back when the other ventured forward. Furthermore he would get at least training in with Altidore and learn where he likes to make his runs (even if they are sometimes the wrong runs) and gain continuity.

      To my second point about being able to play. According to a post by Sunderland’s SB nation site, they are left with many holes in the back. The defensive players listed are : John O’Shea, Wes Brown, Billy Jones, Mobido Diakite, Valentin Roberge. Sounds like Diakite may be swapped for Marcos Alonso though it sounds like Alonso may want to stay in Italy.

      Anyways, suffice it to say that Sunderland need defensive players. They have been linked with a potential move for Geoff Cameron but its unclear what position Poyet fancies him at. I have heard that he wants a bigger CDM. Maybe he fills in there. It is likely that Cameron would be a jack of all trades defender, filling in here or there.

      They may be willing to make the move for Yedlin but maybe his price is to much to bear at this point in time with all of the other needs they have. Also with Wickham needing an extension or to be transferred.

      • Eff Sunderland. It’s not our responsibility to fix them— they are a busted up mess from top to bottom from their own doing, and the knuckleheads in charge (outside of perhaps Poyet) are just as likely vomit bubonic plague on our young talent as they have everything else that’s come across their plate.

        We don’t need to staff a charity project in northern England. Once somebody extracts Jozy from that terrible hole, I hope we call it a day and strongly advise our guys not to go there a couple of decades, not even on vacation (not that anybody in history ever has). Let England send their own mediocre prospects up their to fizzle out and bring Wickham to MLS.

    • would expect so, he was good in the cup and he’s 20. he’s bound to move either now ir in the next year or two IMO.

    • Anderlecht, Roma, Inter, Genoa, Cardiff, QPR, all have had at least a journalist bring it up. Genoa is actually an interesting one. I still would like Sporting CP to try and get him if they are gonna move Cedric (their incumbent RB) as they are very good at developing young talent and playing them . Plus he would have some continuity with Montero since they both came from the same club (though Montero probably only barely knows Yedlin). That way Yedlin gets in a good set up (for young players) and may have a shot at Champions League matches. Plus it could be a good stepping stone if he continues his ascension or isnt the worst club to be at if he treads water for a while.

      Anderlecht is a very good club for Belgian standards but Im not sure if the league is all that much better talent wise than MLS (from top to bottom).

    • At least the guys who have never played overseas. I have no issue with guys like Bradley and Dempsey returning to MLS with the massive contracts they have signed, but for younger players like Besler, Yedlin, Gonzalez, etc, who have never played overseas in that environment, I’d like them to get some experience over there.

      • Yes, I watched ESPN’s Road to Brazil, too. But he is definitely “younger” in terms of both experience and the fact that defenders tend to be older when they peak.

      • I agree. I had no problem with Dempsey or Bradley coming back bc they already tested themselves

      • I don’t think Bradley should have come back. He still has a lot to prove. He should have gone to another club where he’d get playing time. Probably should have gone back to Chievo or Holland. Those were the only two places he had success. Dempsey was probably the top midfielder in England three years ago. Doesn’t get much higher than that. He had trouble getting on a Champions League team so he decided to return.

      • If Dempsey was truly the top midfielder in England three years ago he would have had zero trouble getting on a champions league team.

      • True he wasnt the top midfielder but he was up there in the upper echelon. Problem was that he was a little older and the stigma towards Americans and their technical ability.

        I hope Besler goes abroad and I have heard that QPR are interested in Besler and Yedlin. I would like to see that, though Im not a QPR fan by any means. They could get some continuity even though they most likely wouldnt play side by side. That may be too big a leap for Yedlin just yet though.

        I would like someone to paythe price for Yedlin and loan him to the Championship. I have seen some things about a work permit BUT I heard he could apply for a Latvian passport which would make him associated with the EU and then there is no problem. He is half Latvian I believe and as long as you had grandparents born there then you can get a passport. Not sure if they were though

    • I don’t think this is going to happen. MLS just tripled their TV deal ($90 million per year), and from what I’ve read it seems that was done with the understanding MLS salary cap will rise significantly and turn around the declining TV ratings.

      MLS got Dempsey and Bradley back, how much will they really going to get for a defender? $2 million? They have to keep Besler and Zusi as icons for Sporting KC and MLS. They won’t let people go, they will try to get more American talent and even foreign talent. He’s defending Defoe, Henry, Cahill, Nagbe, Villa, etc. It’s a higher level and going to get higher. I think MLS is starting to become a league that can support national team players. But a lot of that is going to have to come from keeping top American players.

      • It’s not about what MLS wants. To match whatever the offers from Europe are, SKC would have to pay him DP money, and they might not be willing to do that. In the end, it’s going to be his choice…they’re not going to keep him against his will, or risk losing him for nothing when his contract runs out.

      • It is about what MLS wants to do, but you are right Besler and Sporting KC have a part to play in these decisions as well.

        Is his move going to be like to Bundesliga or EPL going to be like Parkhurst or Shea? I think it’s not a cut and dry case that it is better to go to europe these days, especially if MLS takes the jump it seems is imminent.

        I would say that the fact his agent talked about him staying and being a one man club and legendary with the club sounds like he is open to staying. You didn’t hear that from Dempsey when he wanted to leave.

  14. no love for Gonzilla? Regardless, happy the guys are getting some recognition and they find not only a good squad in a competitive league, but that they actually find when they get there..

    • Gonzalez is already making a lot of money in the mls, it might be harder to tempt him. Also besler is a much better player imo

      • Re. Gonz… He is and he isn’t. A guy with his physical tools, coming off a unexpectedly strong WC… $1.25 mm is pretty good but if there was ever a time to consider pushing for a really big pay increase it coming very soon. He is about to enter his prime earning period. The next deal he signs will be the one that benchmarks his max earnings for the remainder of his career… .My guess is clubs will wait to see how he carries the WC form back to the Galaxy and see if he can get himself back to the place he was 2 years ago. If so, he could do very well. If he moves earlier, he may have more incentives built in, but it could also be a better structure for the future

      • I would have been a little more diplomatic but I feel ya.

        The problem with the Liga MX move is that I don’t think that they’d be willing to pay Omar more than he’s getting now.

        I think it would really toughen him up and get him to a level that he can’t achieve playing here yet.

        I just think that for similar pay Omar isn’t going to want to head South when he has a very comfortable and predictable life playing for LA.

      • Improve your craft…so that you can…

        …can what?

        Play in the World Cup? Check.
        Win the playoffs? Check.
        Get a huge paycheck? _____.

      • Considering that Omar is the top paid American defender in MLS and Besler played twice the minutes… Why don’t we start there, at 4million for him.

    • No reason he can’t do both but it’s his career and no one should begrudge him the chance to make as much as he can. These guys have short careers and it’s not Besler’s been earning multi-millions.

    • At the very least, he can expect to get 5x more than he’s making now.
      MLS should not sell Besler for anything less than $8 Million USD.

      • I think he’d be a good candidate for a move — and $8mm seems like a pretty good target though I don’t see him going much higher … At 27 he may have a slight risk factor at the tail end in that he would probably have a minimal sell-on value. But I think he could be regarded as a solid 4 year contributor, with limited injury history and good credentials (outstanding in the last 18 months).

        He will be very important to the US for the next 2-4 years at a minimum, and this experience could help round out his increasingly impressive game. He’ll get a nice raise as you’ve mentioned, and MLS would most certainly welcome him back at the end of his travels, so he should feel fairly comfortable with the professional decision.

      • thats like 5m pounds? thats a pretty good price for a player who has no proven track record in another league, iuf its England hes to go to I’d think it would be more like 2-3m. Altidore went for more but he was much younger and he’s a forward.

      • Besler does have World Cup and USMNT experience and that counts for something, especially when comparing him to guys like Shea, Cameron and Agudelo who signed with Stoke based mostly on their MLS careers.

        I looked it up, and MLS got $2.7 million for Geoff Cameron. I’m not sure about years in the deal, but considering how little Cameron had played for the USMNT at that time in his career, I would think that SKC can hope to do a little, but not all that much better if they sell Besler.

      • Besler is too smart on the ball for the EPL he doesn’t play punt out of defensive third football he’s more of a Bundesliga & La Liga type of guy. Omar is the EPL type.

      • against belgium, Omar looked goofy and lost when he had the ball upfield…. haha, just sayin…

      • Good shout. Consider as well he got knocked off the ball by lukaku and turned on that first goal.
        Omar held up well physically.

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