123112_holdenstuart_isi_bpi_mancunitvboltwand.d1es Chris Brunskill/isiphotos.com
ASN 100 Update

Holdin' Out Hope for Stuart; Boyd to Liverpool?

The once (and future?) United States national team midfielder nears a return to Bolton; Is Liverpool interested in Terrence Boyd?; and the rest of the ASN 100 weekend update.
BY Josh Deaver Posted
December 31, 2012
5:49 AM
Clint Dempsey—ASN Rank #2
After missing two straight matches with a groin injury, Clint Dempsey made his return to Spurs on Saturday, coming off the bench and playing 14 minutes in a 2-1 win over Sunderland. Tottenham are riding a hot streak—winners in six of the last eight league matches—and currently sit in fourth place on 36 points.

Tim Howard—ASN Rank #4
The American keeper continued his streak of consecutive matches this week in a 2-1 victory against Wigan and a 2-1 loss against Chelsea. Despite the continual solid performances, there is one concerning stat for American supporters; Howard has not registered a clean sheet in EPL play since September.

Terrence Boyd—ASN Rank #14
In a report that should probably be taken with a few grains of salt, Liverpool are reportedly interested in the services of the Rapid Vienna forward. According to ESPN, Brendan Rodgers sees the German-American as a possible solution to the goal scoring difficulties at Anfield. Across all competitions, Boyd has 13 goals in 28 matches for Rapid in his first professional campaign.

Brad Guzan—ASN Rank #17
Only three days after an embarrassing 8-0 loss to Chelsea, Aston Villa fell 4-0 to Tottenham. Guzan got the start for the Villains, who failed miserably to contain a rampant Spurs attack and were thoroughly dominated on the day. On Saturday, Villa rounded out their 2012 calendar with another poor showing, this time in a 3-0 home loss to Wigan Athletic. In a performance that prompted walkouts at Villa Park, a truly shambolic defensive effort left the 28-year old keeper exasperated and shaking his head on several occasions. Defender Eric Lichaj also got the start and played 64 minutes in the loss. Recently, Guzan sat down with FOX Soccer to discuss Villa’s recent rough patch as well as the U.S Men’s National Team.

Stuart Holden—ASN Rank #28
Stuart Holden appears poised to make his return to the pitch ahead of schedule. New Bolton manager Dougie Freedman recently told the Bolton News that Holden could come back within a month. “We had an indoor game last week against Wigan in which Stuart played 60-70 minutes," Freedman said. "He played very well and came through it. He probably needs another two or three behind-closed-doors games but hopefully he will be ready by the middle of January.”

Alejandro Bedoya—ASN Rank #45
With the January transfer window fast approaching, Helsingborg is making it very clear that they intend to retain the services of the versatile 25-year old winger. In recent comments to the Swedish press, Helsingborg club director Paul Myllenberg revealed that there have been multiple offers for Bedoya, who scored three goals in 15 appearances this campaign, but that the club has no intentions of selling.

Tim Ream—ASN Rank #51
The former Red Bull defender returned to the Bolton Wanderers Starting XI this week in Championship action. On Wednesday, Ream played 90 minutes in a 1-0 loss to Sheffield Wednesday. On Saturday, Ream once again went the distance in a 3-1 victory over Birmingham City. The match also featured fellow American Jonathan Spector in his first game back since suffering an ankle injury early in the month. Although it has been an inconsistent year for both Ream and his club, Bolton finds themselves only three points out of the top half of the table as 2013 begins.

Zak Whitbread—ASN Rank #63
Whitbread served a one-match yellow card suspension this weekend in Leicester’s 1-0 victory over Burnley, snapping a streak of nine straight league starts for the Houston-born defender. Starting more than half the campaign for the Foxes, Whitbread showed well and has carved out a regular spot for a club in the hunt for promotion. Leicester currently sits in fifth place, only seven points out of the automatic promotion spot.

Austin Berry—ASN Rank #89
The 2012 MLS Rookie of Year has kept busy this offseason, participating in a two-week training stint with Spanish giant Atletico Madrid. The young defender, along with Chicago Fire teammate Jalil Anibaba, got a chance to match up against some of the world’s best, including Colombian sensation Falcao, earlier this month in training sessions and scrimmages with the first team. This week, KickTV published a piece which followed the two promising defenders during their adventures in Spain.

Josh Deaver is a former academic turned soccer obsessive. Follow him on Twitter, @USFootballGuy, for daily updates.

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