Bob Lilley said that he expected a lot of player turnover this off season and John Ball is a veteran Rhino that will not be back in 2010.
Given that Lilley was pretty critical of the Rhinos defense, it shouldn't be too surprising if we hear that anyone along the Rhinos back line isn't back.
But, I was slightly surprised that Ball wasn't one of the guys that was brought back because of his ability to play both as a right back and in the midfield, the fact that he had made Rochester his home and would be around during the off season, and the fact that he still has the ability to get forward, even as he gets up there in age.
I'm most disappointed that I just lost the best emergency co-host for the rest of the off season!
With Ricardo Sanchez signing with the Vancouver Whitecaps, it will be interesting to see how quickly the Rhinos start adding players for 2010.
We know that Rob Clark put this list out a few months ago. Although, I have heard that at least one player on that list may be a free agent after an option for 2010 was not exercised.
It's going to be a long off season and if Lilley wants to bring in a lot of young guys, it will take at least until after the MLS SuperDraft before that market really opens up. But, I would hope that they do get a solid core of 5 or 6 USL vets to be the heart and soul of the team in 2010. And they can work on landing those guys over the next couple of months.
News & Notes:
- Mauro Biello is hanging up the boots. He has always been one of the classiest guys in the league.
- Speaking of jersey leaks, here is a look at Philly's gold & navy away jersey. For some reason, I like that a little better than the navy & gold home jersey.
- The US gave up 3 goals in the first ten minutes of the second half to fall to Denmark yesterday. Yanks Abroad , Steven Goff , and US Soccer.com have recaps, MLS Talk looks at what we learned, and the lowlights are here via Youtube.
- In coaching news, Laurie Calloway is returning to the Des Moines Menace of the PDL [press conference video], Paul Dalglish will be the first head coach of the new Tampa Bay Rowdies, and Preki is to be introduced as the new head coach of Toronto FC today.
- I like Fake Sigi pointing out the the MLS Cup final will see the team with the highest player payroll facing the team with the lowest player payroll.
- The Twin Cities could end up with three soccer clubs in 2010 with Kings FC playing in the NPSL, and both the USL-1 & TOA both potentially having teams in their leagues.
- The second leg of the Uruguay-Costa Rica playoff had an ugly ending.
- Pat Onstad won the MLS Save of the Year.
- There is a piece at USA Today.com about the MLS CBA talks and how a work stoppage may be hard to avoid. Personally, can either side afford to have a work stoppage?
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, and not necessarily those of the Rochester Rhinos or SoccerSam.com. Feel free to send any comments or complaints to email@example.com. James promises to read (but not to respond) to all of them.