Good morning! I fell asleep with this not done, so it’s now mid-morning instead of first thing. There’s some D.C. United transfer news and important Washington Spirit notes to get to, so without further adieu, let’s get into it.
#DCU are meeting with Nigel Robertba abroad this weekend, multiple sources tell me. Club arranged a COVID travel exception to meet with the player and watch him play in person. Will be interesting to see if a deal gets done. https://t.co/2IsngZXwT2— Pablo Iglesias Maurer (@MLSist) February 25, 2021
If United is arranging an in-person meeting on top of traveling to see Nigel Robertha play in person, it sounds like they’re really trying to sell him on the idea of this move. My read on this move is that it’s sort of in-between two different ideas of what the team should be doing, but they’re pretty into making it happen if they’re going this far. We’ll see if they can convince the 23-year-old forward to come over from Levski Sofia or not.
Out now! #DCU transfer rumors, Donovan Pines and the US Olympic roster, and guest @RussellCanouse fills us in on how things are going heading into the season with a new CBA & new coach https://t.co/s54sFGyB7c https://t.co/x8iQheGFLr— Filibuster Podcast (@FilibusterDCU) February 25, 2021
If you want more on that Robertha take from me, plus an interview with Russell Canouse and some analysis of other Black-and-Red news, we got into it in the latest episode of Filibuster. Plus, we talked about Rasputin.
USMNT Olympic roster projection: An early look at possible picks for Tokyo | The Athletic
This intersects with United when the subject of center backs comes up, as Donovan Pines is pursuing an Olympic roster spot at a crowded position. We should have more on this topic here over the weekend, so there’s your teaser of the day.
Ranking which new MLS coaches have the toughest job in 2021 | MLSsoccer.com
I’m not sure I agree with a lot of this list — Inter Miami are a profoundly unserious team who hired Phil Neville because his buddy owns the team, which is not exactly a high-pressure gig — but some thoughts from outside the DCU bubble on the job Hernán Losada is walking into.
Washington Spirit announce 2021 NWSL allocated players | Black and Red United
It was pretty much expected that Kelley O’Hara and Emily Sonnett would be allocated players, but Andi Sullivan’s status was less certain. It’s a big statement about the USWNT’s plans for her, and having three players on the USSF payroll opens up some room to hand out some larger contracts to the rest of the roster.
Washington Spirit and Shenandoah University Announce New Partnership to Benefit Spirit Players, Shenandoah Students and Faculty and the Community | WashingtonSpirit.com
The Spirit are very excited about this program, which will give players tuition-free access to undergrad, graduate, and certificate programs. Aubrey Bledsoe and Paige Nielsen are already taking advantage in a program that seems broadly similar to a program MLS has had for a few years, but it’s something Washington has set up for themselves.
BREAKING.— Taylor Twellman (@TaylorTwellman) February 26, 2021
Hearing Steve Cherundolo will be hired by @LAFC for their coaching staff and based on the rumors about Las Vegas, he will be the new head coach of their @USL affiliate. This is all pending on @USL approval of the agreement which should happen soon. #MLS #LAFC
Well, that’s not quite how I thought this was going to work out. “The rumors” here are that Las Vegas Lights FC would become LAFC’s USL affiliate, which would mean Steve Cherundolo’s pursuit of a coaching gig in the states is apparently going to end up in Sin City.
Red Bulls’ Kaku saga and the murky matter of contract option years | USSoccerPlayers.com
Since the groundbreaking Camilo-to-Queretaro transfer battle back in 2014, players who want a move strongly enough have decided MLS’s unilateral contract option year system doesn’t necessarily hold up strongly enough to prevent moves abroad. Kaku is just the latest player to make their desired transfer happen, and once again the MLS club on the other side seems to have few actual methods to enforce the option year.
Henry Gone!!!!! | Mount Royal Soccer
Those exclamation points sum it up: Thierry Henry has stepped down as (ugh) CF Montreal’s head coach, citing the inability to see his family regularly enough during what will likely be another season spent stuck in the U.S. due to Covid-19 border regulations.
Alright, it’s time to make a little coffee, so let’s wrap it up. Enjoy your Friday!