Happy Tuesday, everyone. The MLS season continues to creep closer and closer with Orlando City holding its first preseason training session today. The club then has its first preseason game this Sunday, and things only ramp up from there. There’s lots to talk about today, so let’s get into the links.
Giovanni Reyna Doubtful for Qualifiers
Giovanni Reyna will not likely be on the roster for the United State’s Men’s National Team’s upcoming round of World Cup qualifiers. Reyna has not played any games since he suffered a right hamstring injury in a match against El Salvador all the way back on Sept. 2. Borussia Dortmund has been targeting a return for Reyna after the international break, and although no exact timetable was given on his return to play for his club, if Dortmund doesn’t want him playing until after the break it makes his participation in this round of qualifiers unlikely. Brenden Aaronson has been starting in Reyna’s stead and playing well, so in terms of starters there shouldn’t be much drop-off. The question will be who gets brought in for depth.
MLS Transfer Roundup
There are a couple noteworthy transfers to go over in Major League Soccer, one of them incoming and one of them outgoing. First up is New York City FC’s Jesus Medina, who has joined CSKA Moscow of the Russian Premier League. The former Designated Player joins on a three-and-half-year deal, and while he never quite hit the heights that were expected of him upon his arrival, he does leave as an MLS Cup winner.
The second transfer concerns Atlanta United, which has permanently signed defender Ronald Hernandez from Aberdeen. Hernandez was on loan with the team last year, and has now been signed through 2024. He made 13 appearances for the team last year and will look to build on that during 2022.
There are also some transfer rumors to address, with Sporting Kansas City reportedly in talks to sign Cyprus international winger Marinos Tzionis from Omonia Nicosia, and Erik Lopez reportedly heading to Club Atletico Banfield from Atlanta.
Eriksen in Talks With Brentford
Christian Eriksen is said to be in talks with Premier League side Brentford over a six-month contract that would bring the Danish midfielder back to England. The 29-year-old is able to sign with whatever team he likes after Italian medical authorities ruled that he was not allowed to play with a cardiac implant device. The midfielder suffered a high profile cardiac arrest on the field during last summer’s European Championships and has not played competitively since. However, he still believes he is able to play at a high level and his representatives have apparently spoken to a number of clubs both in England and elsewhere. Eriksen previously worked with Brentford manager Thomas Frank when he was with the Denmark Under-17 team.
Orlando Pride’s Marta Among FIFA The Best Winners
The winners are in for the awkwardly named FIFA The Best awards. Robert Lewandowski was named The Best Men’s Player for the second year in a row after he knocked in a whopping 41 goals during the previous Bundesliga season. Barcelona midfielder Alexia Putellas was named The Best Women’s Player, completing the triumvirate of also winning the Ballon d’Or Feminin and the UEFA Women’s Player of the Year award. Additionally, Thomas Tuchel was named the Manager of the Year on the men’s side and fellow Chelsea manager Emma Hayes was named The Best Women’s Coach. The Orlando Pride’s Marta was named in the FIFPRO World XI, as were former Pride player Alex Morgan and her USWNT teammate, Carli Lloyd.
✨ The 2021 Women’s FIFA FIFPRO #World11 lineup:— FIFPRO (@FIFPRO) January 17, 2022
By the players, for the players. @FIFAWWC pic.twitter.com/GPaDEOhf6X
- Orlando City completed its preseason medicals yesterday.
- Both Dom Dwyer and Justin Meram’s moves to Orlando make the cut in the top 11 most expensive trades in MLS history.
- Fred has branded reports of rifts in Manchester United’s dressing room as “fake news.”
- Pierre-Emerick Aubamayeng is returning to Arsenal early from the African Cup of Nations following medical problems that he has encountered at the tournament.
That does it for me. Y’all stay safe out there.