Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! With the Egyptian friendly canceled, it was a slow week in American soccer. MLS clubs are playing pre-season matches against youth clubs, colleges, and each other, and the season is less than one month away. Besides the schedule release last week, here are some other news items flying under the radar:
- Real Salt Lake were the big winners this weekend as they acquired former Wake Forest striker Cody Arnoux in an MLS weighted lottery. Arnoux scored over 30 goals in his collegiate career and went overseas after graduation, playing for the Everton youth team and a bit in Scotland before spending last season with Vancouver. Because he was previously approached by MLS to sign before leaving for Europe, the contract he signed with Vancouver this offseason was voided, and he was placed in a weighted lottery. RSL may try and trade him to Vancouver, but if they keep him they could have a nice steal as Arnoux has some potential.
- American international Eric Lichaj, who has not played for Aston Villa since December, was sent on a four-month loan to historic Leeds United in the English second division. Leeds is battling for promotion and the chance to receive regular playing time on a good club can only help the rising American star.
- Speaking of American internationals, Stuart Holden continues to impress in England. His free kick in the tenth minute led to Bolton’s first goal and he had a goal wrongly waived off at the end of the match. Holden is really asserting himself in England and making the case for playing time on the national team.
- Fellow American international Jozy Altidore looked good in his Turkish debut; check out his moves in the video above. Bursaspor grabbed a 1-1 draw with Eskisehispor K.
- In sad news, former first round draft pick Bright Dike will likely miss most of the season with a torn Achilles. The 23 year-old had signed with Portland and hurt himself in a preseason match. Too bad for a guy trying to live up to his draft status.