Coach Jurgen Klinsmann trimmed his roster to 23 players. Surprisingly an expected name is missing from the list. Landon Donovan, who was considered the best male player in the history of United States soccer, is out of the U.S. World Cup team declared on Thursday.
With 57 goals and 58 assists Donovan is the career leader for the national team. The 32 year-old was seeking to play in the world cup for the fourth time. He already had 156 international appearances.
He was the key player for the 2010 U.S. World Cup Team. With his great vision and threatening speed he provided the opportunity for the team to play in the second round.
After all this memoirs, anyone following the national team closely, will not be surprised with Donovan’s exclusion. Someone can agree and someone still can’t.
Despite his experience, Klinsmann had to make opportunity for forwards like Chris Wondolowski and Aron Johannsson. With Jozy Altidore and Clint Dempsey they deserved instead to be named for the U.S. World Cup team.
“I am very disappointed with today’s decision and I was looking forward to playing in Brazil”
Donovan expressed like this on his Facebook page.
Right back Brad Evans was also cut from the U.S. World Cup Team on Thursday. It was quite surprising move from the coach. There are some other names like – Terrence Boyd, Michael Parkhurst, Joe Corona, Maurice Edu and Clarence Goodson. They were also kept out for the team.
The United States has opened its training camp recently ahead of next month’s World Cup in Brazil. Just before the event, Klinsmann made clear to reporters that the roster spots are to be earned, never to be gifted as career achievement awards.
Klinsmann told the Associated Press,
“I just see some other players slightly ahead of him, so I have to make the decisions as of today”
“Donovan knows I have the highest respect for him and what is good today for this group is going into Brazil”
Klinsmann always respects for what Donovan did for U.S. soccer. But he had to take the decision, though it may seem a little rude.
“You give him every compliment he deserves. Unfortunately soccer is about what you do today and what you hopefully do tomorrow”
“The group is based on what we go through together and what we believe and for today it is the right decision”
Landon Donovan took a self-imposed four-month sabbatical from soccer in December 2012. But he returned and played superbly in the 2013 Gold Cup. And he was relegated to reserve duty last month for a friendly against Mexico. Klinsmann said that Donovan lacked speed and insistence in training. He also appeared heavier than in the past.
Klinsmann also appeared concerned that Donovan lacked motivation and was too willing to accept a lesser role on the national team. Especially after his inconsequential stints in the Bundesliga, Klinsmann also questioned about Donovan’s toughness.
Still, his absence could add more vulnerability to the U.S. World Cup Team. The team has historically struggled to score in the tournament and no U.S. forward has delivered a goal in the World Cup since 2002. Where Donovan has five goals in World Cup.
“If Landon is on the field, he’s our top one or two players”
Goalkeeper Tim Howard told reporters.
Donovan had seemed resigned and excited while speaking to reporters in recent days. After conceding that injury and age had tempered his skill. He might have to play as a reserve. But he said he remained confident in his ability. May be he deserved to be on the U.S. World Cup Team.
He told reporters,
“I have to prove that, and I have to earn it”
Unlike his first appearance in the World Cup 2002, he did not have the youthful energy and excitement. Probably Donovan can see the game and I see the situation a lot more changed.
U.S. World Cup Team, that klinsmann declared is listed below:
The full squad:
Forwards: Clint Dempsey (Seattle Sounders FC), Jozy Altidore (Sunderland), Chris Wondolowski (San Jose Earthquakes) and Aron Johannsson (AZ Alkmaar)
Midfielders: Alejandro Bedoya (Nantes), Kyle Beckerman (Real Salt Lake), Michael Bradley (Toronto FC), Mix Diskerud (Rosenborg), Brad Davis (Houston Dynamo), Julian Green (Bayern Munich), Graham Zusi (Sporting Kansas City) and Jermaine Jones (Besiktas)
Defenders: Matt Besler (Sporting Kansas City), DaMarcus Beasley (Puebla), John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), Timmy Chandler (Nürnberg), Geoff Cameron (Stoke City), Omar Gonzalez (LA Galaxy), DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders FC) andFabian Johnson (Borussia Mönchengladbach)
Goalkeepers: Tim Howard (Everton), Brad Guzan (Aston Villa) and Nick Rimando (Real Salt Lake)
Major League Soccer is a divisive soccer league among current generation soccer fans. Some believe, it is growing and flourishing enough to become an eventual top league in the world. Some still think it’s not even good enough to be a third-tier league comparing the Premier division Leagues in Europe. Whatever people may think, MLS is still raking in millions of dollars each season. After the teams New York and Orlando entering the league, there’s a chance for the MLS pocketbook to expand even wider.
MLS soccer teams are not even the home of the best American soccer players. As most of the American soccer players are plying their trade in leagues across Europe. But the league is providing a spectacle for North American soccer fans. They can now enjoy soccer without having to spend a fortune to fly across the Atlantic. However, the quality of the MLS teams isn’t quite what it is overseas. Games between MLS teams and European clubs in preseason friendlies easily proof that.
For the past time being, the MLS teams are mostly considered as the semi-retirement home for European stars. You can count here names like David Beckham, Alessandro Nesta, Kaka and Thierry Henry. More money is being put into MLS Soccer teams than ever before.
Top 10 MLS Soccer Teams (MLS teams):
There are eight MLS teams listed in this countdown mostly based in the United States. Other two of the three teams representing MLS Canada, continuing to make good coin on the north side.
This top 10 list is a testament to how fast the MLS Soccer teams are expanding and growing in a continent. Even competing with far more successful sports leagues.
Let’s check out, which one is the most valuable MLs team in 2015?
10. Montreal Impact
Team Value:$96 Million
This is the newest Canadian club to enter the MLS. Montreal Impact is already becoming quite profitable for a team that’s only played two full seasons. There are couple of good reasons in them. The Joey Saputo-owned club plays their games between the smaller Saputo Stadium and the much bigger Olympic Stadium.
The bigger one is used for big-ticket events such as the team’s home matches. Being one of the most valuable MLS Soccer teams, the team has also benefited from adding Italian stars such as Alessandro Nesta and Marco Di Vaio. The Impact are worth $96 million. The 10th of the most valuable MLS teams, they have seen a revenue of $26.2 million last season.
The team has come a fairly long way from their days as the Dallas Burn. They have had a poor season last time. They have also seen their head coach Schellas Hyndman step down after the 15th place among MLS teams. FC Dallas are still among the most profitable teams in the MLS.
They have successfully generated $24.2 million revenue last season. Owned by Kansas City Chiefs owner Clark Hunt and the Hoops don’t have any particularly big names. They will be hoping to sign a new designated player in the New Year. The e9th of the valuable MLS soccer teams, FC Dallas worth nearly $97 million in 2015.
The Chicago Fire are still making great coin despite not having won the MLS cup for one and half decades. The MLS team is owned by Andrew Hauptman of Los Angeles-based investment firm Andell Holdings. They have lost the German defender Arne Friedrich to retirement this season. And they have been making $24.5 million in revenue in past season.
The team is currently worth roughly $102 million even after losing $3.2 million in profit. Despite this and the Fire’s disappointing season, they can still brag about the fact that forward/hometown boy Mike Magee is the MLS MVP and also the Golden Boot winner this year. They are currently at the 8th position of the most valuable MLS soccer teams in 2015.
Previously they were known as the Kansas City Wizards. And now the Sporting KC don’t necessarily boast the league’s biggest names. Yet they must be doing something right as they’re the defending champions from last season. The MLS soccer club worth a value of $108 million. They are currently generating revenue of $27.7 million yearly. Sporting will likely see that number rise after their run to the MLS cup.
They beat Real Salt Lake on penalties, which is considered as the coldest MLS championship game ever. The defending MLS champs have got plenty to brag about for keeping the position among MLS soccer teams.
This may be one of the MLS teams that is better known outside of North America. They are currently having the World Cup-winner Thierry Henry spearheading their strike force. May be this is another cause of their popularity. But the Red Bulls are a bit more than just one legendary footballer. The team who finished first overall in the league last season also have veteran Australian attacking midfielder Tim Cahill.
They have been lucky enough to see Youri Djorkaeff and Brazilian free kick maestro Juninho don the red and white in previous seasons. The Red Bulls are valued at $114 million, with a $28.1 million revenue. That ranks them in 6th position among the MLS soccer teams.
Despite their woes on the pitch and with former Kiwi player Ryan Nelsen currently at the helm, Toronto FC are still among the MLS soccer teams most profitable side. They had yet another disappointing season last year. This has seemingly been the case with most Toronto sports clubs.
The Reds are still valued at $121 million and earns revenue of $30.9 million yearly. With the return of homegrown star Dwayne De Rosario to T.O and also with the heavily rumored signing of Jermain Defoe from Tottenham Hotspur, Toronto FC are likely to see their figures continue to rise in the upcoming seasons. They are currently considered the 5th among the MLS teams as per franchise value.
The MLS team is co-owned by former boxing superstar Oscar De La Hoya. The Houston Dynamo are among the most successful MLS soccer teams on the pitch. Winning the MLS Cup in their first two seasons as a club is no mean feat. They have been also the finalists in 2011 and 2012. All these are huge signal of success for the Dynamo.
The team is currently worth $125 million. And they have been earning $32.6 million in revenue per year. Although the team has announced no big changes to the squad following Brian Ching’s retirement. The Dynamo is still expected to be a competitive team for the next season.
Portland Timbers are a surprisingly profitable club even with being only two-year-old. They have been given their location in one of America’s most under-served sports markets. The Timbers made last year’s Western Conference final and finished third overall in the MLS.
The team is valued at $141 million and yearly earns revenue of $39.1 million currently. Manchester United fans may recognize the team for having Mikael Silvestre. Players like Will Johnson and Diego Valeri also make up part of this team’s core. The Timbers can expect their pocketbooks to expand even wider this season as being the 3rd of the most valuable MLS soccer teams.
LA Galaxy wouldn’t be blamed for immediately associating them with David Beckham. The former English football Icon has retired and left his mark on American soccer. Again Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane remain with the MLS Club. The team will be looking to improve on a slightly disappointing fifth-place finish last season.
The team just misses out on the top spot on this list with a value of $170 million. Currently they have been marked as earning record $44 million revenue. With former US national team manager Bruce Arena at the helm, they are bound to remain among the top contenders for next year. Los Angeles Galaxy is the 2nd of the richest MLS soccer teams in 2015.
They are undoubtedly the most well-known MLS team for a sitcom that had a theme song called “Cleveland Rocks”. Majority owner of this club is Joe Roth, movie producer and co-founder of Morgan Creek Productions.
The Sounders have racked up a staggering $175 million in value. And proudly occupying the top position in this list of most valuable MLS soccer teams in 2015. The team itself also clocked up a revenue of about $48 million. They will surely see more cash come through following the signing of American star Clint Dempsey from Tottenham Hotspur last season. Definitely they are on of the best MLS teams of all time.