We've seen it at Everton. We've seen it at Arsenal. We've even seen it at AC Milan. And now, could Newcastle United also explore the MLS loan market?
Under normal circumstances, any conversation regarding the MLS and Premier League will usually concern which English has-been will next decide to see out the remainder of his career in America. However, its important to remember that there has been an underrated flow going in the other direction for several years now.
While Dempsey, Holden and Howard have all made the permanent switch, its also interesting to consider the loan market: a move which has enticed a number of players including David Beckham, Thierry Henry and Landon Donovan over the last few years.
Here we have a look at whether there are any MLS players worthy of Newcastle’s attention?
So, let us begin:
Omar Gonzalez (central defender): The 2011 MLS Defender of the Year and a physical force in the center of the LA defense, Gonzalez has rapidly risen the ranks to become one of the best defenders in the MLS.
His performances have not gone unnoticed in Europe, either. In January, he went on loan to FC Nuremberg in the Budesliga, before a torn ACL cut short his European excursion.
Brek Shea (Left Midfield): Some of you may recognize the name – last January, the Dallas FC midfielder trained with Arsenal. The youngster is one of the hottest talents in America right now, and at just 22 years of age, he’a already featured in over 100 games for the club, bagging 19 goals in the process.
Known for his size, strength and speed, his versatile playing style means he can play in a multitude of different positions. USA coach Jurgen Klinsmann says: “He’s full of energy, he’s creative and he’s fast and has a good physical presence.”
With the club currently lacking conviction (Jonas) out on the left-hand side, Shea could be the man to fill the gap.
Dwayne de Rosario (attacking midfield): It remains a mystery why DC United’s de Rosario has never been given a chance by an English team. He has certainly proven himself time and again, having been elected for the ‘MLS Team of the Year’ 6 times, as well as winning last year’s ‘MLS MVP’ and ‘MLS Golden Boot’ award (20 goals).
Despite playing in midfield, he has managed to score an incredible 100 MLS goals over his 15 year career, thus earning him the name “the American Lampard”. The biggest stumbling block is his age – 34. Although it may seem an unlikely move for Newcastle considering their transfer policy, it could just be a risk worth taking.
Chris Wondolowski (striker): Some will doubt the validity of Wondolowski’s true ability, since he isn’t the most athletic or the fastest player around. However, he has an insatiable thirst for goal, and has an uncanny knack for getting into excellent positions to finish. This season, he has scored an astonishing 27 goals in 34 games for his club, San Jose Earthquakes.
Wondolowski was elected to the 2012 MLS All-Star Game versus Chelsea during the Summer. Despite being defended by John Terry, he managed to score in the first half. Terry said after the game that it was a ‘nightmare’ to cover him.
Landon Donovan (striker): This is perhaps the most obvious choice on the list. It’s a well-known fact that Donovan can cut it in the Premier League. Having gone on loan to Everton twice now, as well as Bayern Munich back in 2009, it is very possible that he could be interested in a loan move back to Europe.
Regarded by many as the best “soccer” player in American history, he has scored 92 goals in 194 appearences for LA Galaxy, in addition to 49 international goals. With Newcastle only having two intimidating striker on their roster, Donovan could be the perfect option.
So, I definitely think that Newcastle should explore this avenue of interest. The MLS has grown in stature enormously over the past couple of years, and the quality of the football has improved astronomically in return.
Can any of our readers from across the Atlantic give us any more information regarding these players? Are there players that we’ve missed out?
What do you think? Who would you most like to see in the famous black and white stripes of Newcastle?