February 7, 2007
Scott Palguta continues to impress Real Salt Lake head coach Steve Ellinger with his fitness level and work ethic. Add in his ability to play in central defense and left back and Scott's chances of sticking with the MLS club may be better than most Rhino fans would hope.
The fact that Real Salt Lake defender Daniel Torres is having visa issues that could keep him out of camp for three weeks or more only adds to Palguta's opportunity to impress.
MLS unveils their 2007 schedule
For those that were thinking about making the trip to Toronto to see the LA Galaxy and David Beckham, Sunday, August 5th at 7pm is the only time that the Galaxy will visit BMO Field. It very well could be the first MLS match that Beckham plays in. The Galaxy may be hoping to unveil Beckham at home in their Superliga match versus Chivas on July 24th. That would cause Beckham's first four MLS matches to be an eastern road trip to Toronto, DC, New England, and New York.
The national broadcast schedule will see ABC showing the season opener and MLS Cup, ESPN2 will have 25 Thursday night regular season games, plus the All-Star game versus Celtic, HDNet will have 30 regular season matches, Fox Soccer Channel and Fox Sports en Espanol will have 28 regular season matches, and Telefutura and Galavision will have 25 regular season matches.
The unfriendliest of friendlies
The US will have the less experienced roster, an interim head coach in his second game in charge of the national team, and a crowd that is likely to give the "home field advantage" to the visitors. But, whenever the US and Mexico play, you can expect some fireworks.
It will be interesting to see how a young US squad responds to the challenge this evening as more than half of the players on the US roster for the match have never played Mexico before. More than half of the US roster also didn't play in the last World Cup.
Mexico on the other hand has come in with a roster with a lot more experience versus the US and from last year's World Cup. The Mexicans, and their new head coach in Hugo Sanchez, are obviously taking this friendly as an opportunity to try and regain the title of the best team in CONCACAF.
Hopefully the fresh blood on the US roster will give Mexico a little different look and get a result.
Bruce Arena not expecting to sign a global superstar
New York Red Bulls head coach and sporting director Bruce Arena is now trying to temper fan's expectations for whom the Red Bulls second designated player signing will be. There have been rumors of the Red Bulls going after Ronaldo and Figo, only to see those players move to other clubs and the Red Bulls saying afterward that they were never really that close to getting either guy.
Add in all the speculation after the LA Galaxy signed David Beckham and it was natural for the rumor mill to spit out huge names with the Red Bulls having not one, but two designated player slots after their trade with Chivas USA.
However, Bruce Arena is trying to downplay the type of player that his club is looking at bringing in to fill their second designated player slot after they used the first to sign former US Men's National Team captain and New Jersey native Claudio Reyna.
Arena also downplayed rumors that he was looking to add US Men's National Team midfielders John O'Brien and DeMarcus Beasley to the Red Bulls.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org. James promises to read (but not to respond) to all of them.