12213_zusigraham_isi_mlsack20131102114 Andrew Katsampes/isiphotos.com

ASN Morning Read: Graham Zusi Is the Future

The Sporting Kansas City star leads his team into the final match of the MLS campaign as he looks to cap off an excellent year; where will Clint Dempsey land?; a history lesson.
BY Noah Davis Posted
December 02, 2013
8:08 AM
  • Graham Zusi, an American soccer success story? That's one argument: "What sets Zusi apart is that after he made his international breakthrough, he stuck around. He was the first of a wave of young national teamers—followed by Sporting teammate Matt Besler and the Los Angeles Galaxy’s Omar Gonzalez—who eschewed the chance to become free agents and try their luck across the pond. Sporting used the league’s new retention fund to lock Zusi up when his rookie deal wound down, just as it did with Besler. He is, after all, the very essence of what MLS appreciates in a player: He’s American, home-grown, made his name within the league, an international, and, above all, that rare technical player the league believes will help elevate the level of play to a higher plane."

  • Clint Dempsey has four English Premier League teams interested in his services. Stoke City, Fulham, West Ham, and Everton are all reportedly interested in getting the Seattle Sounders forward for a stint this winter. Handicapping the options, anyone?

  • MLS Cup week launches with a smart look at the history of the rivalry between Sporting Kansas City and Real Salt Lake. It's, um, long.

  • In other MLS news, the D.C. United stadium plan is slogging through bureaucracy: "Five months after D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray announced an ambitious plan to build a new soccer stadium, the administration has missed a series of self-imposed deadlines, including a promise to deliver a land deal for the D.C. Council to vote on this year." Well, that's no good.

  • Zahir Belounis, home at last.

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