BRIAN SCIARETTA - Friday, May 11, 2012
The Summer transfer window in Europe is often known as the silly season and the summer version is almost upon us. This one, however, could see many Americans on the move.
A few notable Americans have signed new contracts in the past few months and are unlikely to go anywhere. Tim Howard, Josh Gatt Timothy Chandler, and Andrew Wooten are all fresh off new deals, so they will likely remain with their current clubs.
With that said here are some Americans that could be on the move this summer and here is a list of players who will be staying put.
On the move
Ever since joining Fulham in 2007, Dempsey has enjoyed a remarkable career with the Cottagers. He has become the all-time leading scorer for Americans in the Premier League and this past season has seen him become one of the league's best players.
But Dempsey has likely done all that he can do with the London-based club that appears unlikely to compete for a spot in the Champions League in the years ahead.
Dempsey has made it clear that he wants to compete in the Champions League and either he goes to a top club or he likely remains with Fulham. There are a few clubs outside of England that have been rumored to be interested, most notably Schalke and Roma, but my guess is that he likely stays in England.
So will a top club in England be interested? My guess is yes and I would guess Tottenham and Arsenal show interest.
Lichaj has spent his entire professional career under contract with Aston Villa but he did manage to go out on loan to three separate lower level teams over the years.
Villa are in the middle of a terrible season and since he returned from injury this fall, Lichaj has shown that he has been one of the club's better defenders. It would make sense for Villa to want to keep him but given the erratic nature of his tenure at Villa that has seen loans and inconsistent playing time over the years, finding a new club in England could be in the cards.
Guzan has always played well when given the chance at Aston Villa but ever since he joined the club in 2008, he has never been able to secure the starting spot.
Guzan is likely good enough to be the starter for a club either in the lower EPL/upper Championship. He also may have interest in other European leagues. He is in his prime and will likely want to move to a place where he can play every game.
The US national team captain joined Rangers last year with great optimism. The club had just won its third straight Scottish Premier League title and with a three year contract in hand, he looked to become a stalwart in central defense.
The optimism was short lived. Rangers crashed out of Europe in August and a financial crisis in the spring saw the club's status crumble. A 10 point deduction saw their title chances collapse and they will not be in Europe next year.
Worse yet, the club's top players will likely be leaving and Bocanegra could likely be part of that exodus.
He's good enough to still contribute for a good European team but a move back to MLS may also come to fruition.
Like Bocanegra, Maurice Edu could be on his way out of Glasgow. French club Sochaux made two bids during the winter window which were both turned down. It is unlikely after the financial collapse that a reasonable offer for Edu will be turned down again.
Edu has done everything he can do with Rangers and the quality of the Scottish Premier League is not getting any better. It's hard to see him staying with Rangers next season.
It's tough to determine where Edu will end up next but there will be interest from clubs in many different countries.
Terrence Boyd (Loan)
Terrence Boyd is seen by many inside of US Soccer as a player with potential. That is why Jurgen Klinsmann gave Boyd his first cap before his first professional game.
Boyd is still yet to play a professional game and that is largely due to the fact he plays at Borussia Dortmund who are one of the best teams in the world. He has done well for the club's U23 team but he's already 21 years old and it is now time for him to step up.
I can see him staying with Dortmund for a loan to get experience but the defending Bundesliga Champions will want to keep him within the organization. A loan to a lower Bundesliga team or a 2.Bundesliga team would make sense.
Zak Whitbread's injury plagued career continued this season with Norwich as he missed large stretches of games with various injuries.
When Whitbread did play, he did well but throughout his whole career he has proven to be unreliable because he regularly misses so many games. There have already been rumors that Norwich will part ways with Whitbread after this season and that would seem to make sense. Norwich has struggled in defense and probably will find the oft-injured Whitbread to be expendable.
It is tough to see Whitbread moving out of England but acquiring him is a risky move for a club. He will likely move to a team either as an insurance backup or a club that is desperate and hoping the gamble will playoff. A likely bet would be for Whitbread to move to a club in the upper Championship to the lower Premier League.
Bryan Gerzicich is coming off a terrific season where he helped lead the tiny club of Hapoel Kiryat Shmona to the Israeli Premier League title and a spot in Champions League qualifying.
But with Kiryat Shmona's head coach leaving and with him being maybe the best defensive midfielder in the league he will likely have opportunities to move on.
He may see if there is interest in the Argentina Primera where he developed as a young player but I think the safest bet would be for him to move to one of the richer clubs in Israel.
There are always rumors of players moving on but here is who I see staying with their current clubs.
Landon Donovan: He had another successful loan to Everton in January but I think he will stay with LA where he seems comfortable.
Brek Shea: Shea has been off to an average start to the 2012 season. I think he could get some interest in January if he returns to form and has a solid season the rest of the way.
George John: John's deal to Blackburn fell through last summer and his brief winter loan to West Ham saw him earn zero first team minutes. I think he will need to have a good season before maybe testing the waters again in January.