By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Jan 22, 2020) US Soccer Players - Whatever your thoughts about the value of the MLS SuperDraft, it does serve a time-honored function in the collective North American soccer consciousness. It’s the unofficial kickoff of the new season every January, a mid-winter reference point. In that regard, the 2021 rendition fell a bit flat as it unfolded virtually on . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Jan 15, 2020) US Soccer Players - After a year’s delay imposed by COVID-19, the details became official this week. The USMNT Under-23 squad travels to Guadalajara in late March for Concacaf Olympic qualifying, hopeful of plotting a course to the Summer Games for the first time since 2008. Coach Jason Kreis was already on site at Guadalajara at the same time . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Jan 7, 2020) US Soccer Players - Are the LA Galaxy still members of the MLS elite? This once would have been a ludicrous question given their league-leading five MLS Cup titles, well-heeled ownership in AEG, and glitzy identity to match their Southern California setting. Lately, however, a good deal of the Galaxy shine has rubbed off. The club that won three . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Dec 31, 2020) US Soccer Players - This month an iron man of American soccer called time on a great career. In doing so, Kyle Beckerman brought down the curtain on a momentous era for the game in his country as just about everyone on earth celebrates the end of a brutal 2020. Now 38, Beckerman is the only non-goalkeeper in MLS history to play 20 seasons. He . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Dec 24, 2020) US Soccer Players - From a deadly global pandemic and widespread economic suffering to political dysfunction and police killings, 2020 visited plenty of pain on MLS players, just like the rest of the world. One silver lining amid that woe was the founding of Black Players for Change. BPC officially launched on Juneteenth, a date rich with historic . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Dec 17, 2020) US Soccer Players - Collective bargaining negotiations can be lengthy, tense, and painful. That's one reason why they tend to be multi-year agreements. The MLS Players Association was on the receiving end of an unwelcome exception to that this year, as the union found itself at the negotiating table with the league not once, but twice. First, in . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Dec 11, 2020) US Soccer Players - With a recession, political turmoil, and a global viral pandemic causing pain and suffering for billions of people around the world, some version of "things could be worse" has become a common greeting for those of us who haven't hit bottom. Humanity has had little choice but to make the best of bad situations in 2020, and this . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Dec 4, 2020) US Soccer Players - The USMNT doesn't get together in December all that often. It's traditionally a dark spot on the international calendar, a time of club games and winter downtime for most of North America and Europe. That's why Wednesday's friendly vs El Salvador in Fort Lauderdale is the first USMNT match in December since 2001. Exceptional times . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Nov 27, 2020) US Soccer Players - The Philadelphia Union's best-ever season had just crashed to a shuddering halt well before it was supposed to, and Alejandro Bedoya was infuriated. "I mean, it's one thing to be performing at an elite level during the regular season, but playoffs are playoffs," said the Union captain and USMNT veteran ruefully after his team's . . .
By Charles Boehm – WASHINGTON, DC (Nov 20, 2020) US Soccer Players - Reggie Cannon hasn't been in Europe for very long. The FC Dallas product arrived at Boavista just two months before the USMNT gathered in Wales at the start of the November international window. Cannon's already found his feet as a regular starter there, finding it dramatically different from his MLS experience. The fullback . . .