Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Odds and Ends

Who's that?  New MLS signing Luis Gil, that's who.  After months of speculation the US U17 midfielder signed today with MLS, presumably agreeing to a Generation Adidas contract.  The Red Bulls, as a result of their general suckitude in 2009, will have the greatest chance of landing him in a weighted lottery scheduled to take place in an alley behind MLS headquarters on Monday, February 22.  Start heating up those balls for Commissioner Garber!

You'd expect the Philadelphia Union to have the greatest chance of landing the kid after the way the league has bent over backwards for the fine people of the City of Brotherly Love, but precedent dictates that expansion clubs come last in these situations.  This is what happened when Robbie Rogers returned from Heerenveen in Toronto FC's expansion year and was grabbed by Columbus.

Assuming the Red Bulls land Gil in the lottery (and that is by no means a sure thing), would it be worth keeping him or would the team be better off sending his rights to, say, San Jose or Chivas USA in return for an allocation that can be used on a more experienced midfielder?  Gil is by most accounts very raw, but he was being looked at by Arsenal, so the talent is there.  We will find out more on Monday.

A few other tidbits as we head into the weekend:
  • We mentioned earlier this afternoon that Red Bull Arena would be hosting its first international friendly, between Turkey and the Czech Republic, on Saturday May 22.  That just so happens to be the date of the 2010 Champions League Final in Madrid.  A viewing party on the big screens at Red Bull Arena has been nixed as too expensive, but might the club be willing to open up the Corner Pub to interested season ticket holders after the match?  It would certainly make attending the friendly a more enticing prospect for fans worried about missing the Big Cup final.  Stay tuned.
  • What about the first of the two planned USMNT World Cup warm-ups against the Czech Republic?  At this point, the site of that game is listed as TBD, though Rentschler Field in East Hartford has been rumored.  It's hard to imagine a weeknight USMNT friendly against a European opponent of the Czechs' caliber drawing more than 25,000 fans.  Would it not have made more sense to hold this match at Red Bull Arena?  Could that still be in the cards?
  • The Champions League trophy made a visit to New York this week.  I was not lucky enough to see it in person, but Paulo Pincaro of Glorious Football got up close and personal with "the cup with big ears" and also rubbed shoulders with a number of greats, including Zico, Edgar Davids, as well as his fellow Portugueezer Eusebio.  A gallery of photos documenting the event and some of the incredible memorabilia on display can be seen in two parts here.
  • Finally, The Viper's Nest would like to thank Sam Haseltine and Football United for hosting the excellent blogger/fan meet-up held Wednesday at Nevada Smith's.  In addition to the free beer and great conversation, we got to meet Nat from American Soccer News and Stan Chelney, a fellow Red Bulls supporter who maintains the insightful Soccerlaw blog.  We've added it to our useful links section for your convenience.

blog comments powered by Disqus