Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Tuesday Afternoon Notebook

With the Red Bulls back in training today ahead of their US Open Cup clash with New England Revolution on Wednesday night, a few bits of interesting news have emerged from Montclair. First, the man pictured above, Brazilian defender Cléber António Oliveira, better known as Clebao, is currently on trial with the Red Bulls and could see action in the upcoming friendly against Juventus, should Backe and company decide to take a longer look at him.  Clebao is currently plying his trade with the Brazilian second division club Uniao Sao Joao Araras after a brief stint with Nacional of Portugal's Division 1 Liga Sagres.  With Kevin Goldthwaite likely gone for the season, Andrew Boyens away with New Zealand on World Cup duty in the coming weeks and fixtures beginning to pile up, the Red Bulls' depth at the back could be tested in the coming months.  Whether Clebao is the answer remains to be seen.

One rumor doing the rounds this week is the possible interest of Mexican second division club Veracruz in a certain Juan Pablo Angel.  Today Angel played down the rumor when he spoke with reporters, claiming only that representatives from Veracruz had reached out to his agent.  With the designated player situation in flux and Angel's age starting to become an issue, it's anyone's guess as to whether he will remain with the Red Bulls at the end of the season, but given the lack of good options up front, it's hard to imagine RBNY parting with their captain and top scorer in the middle of the current campaign.

In non-Red Bulls news (unless we include former Red Bulls/MetroStars), Bob Bradley today named his provisional squad for the World Cup in South Africa which is, believe it or not, just one month away.  The only real drama about today's announcement concerned the inclusion/exclusion of Charlie Davies, who continues to recover from last year's horrific car accident in Washington, DC. In the end, Bradley and the USSF decided against including Davies.  My friend Kevin McCauley gives us the low-down on the USMNT 30-man squad at All Things Footy and tells us why the legions of frantic Bradley haters/Davies lovers need to lie down and take a Xanax.

By the way, if you want to see a really nutty World Cup squad, take a look at the 30 that the world's looniest football manager, Raymond Domenech, has selected for France.  It includes an astounding nine strikers (including Thierry Henry) and four goalkeepers.  Domenech is either a) indecisive, b) crazy, or c) both.  I'll go for c. 

Finally, the Red Bulls have announced that they will be raising funds for former midfielder Joe Vide at Saturday's home game against the Seattle Sounders.  Vide, who has been diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma, is facing a huge financial burden as a result of costly treatments and insurance company intransigence (shocker).  In addition to an auction of player shirts, fans can also contribute via collection buckets that will be passed around, or leave messages of support for Joe in front of section 127.  Vide is fondly remembered by Red Bulls fans for his hard work and approachability.  Please support Joe and his family in their time of need.
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