Thursday, December 31, 2009

Stuart Holden on GMA = Stuart Holden Staying in MLS

Earlier today on his Twitter account, Stuart Holden announced that he was going to be on Good Morning America on New Year's Day Morning. While I have no confirmation of this one way or the other, I can think of no other reason for Stuart Holden being on Good Morning America except that he will announce that he is staying in MLS and not pursuing a free transfer to Europe at this time.

Today is December 31, 2009, the last day of Stuart Holden's contract with MLS. We know that Holden recently met with MLS Commissioner Don Garber and and rumor is that MLS made Holden an offer that would increase his salary to over $300,000.00 a year. Since that meeting with Garber, word trickled down the the Houston Dynamo made a revised offer to Holden.

When you take into account that Holden indicated that he would make his decision by the end of 2009, that he is going on GMA on January 1, 2010, that GMA is part of the ABC/ESPN family which holds some MLS broadcast rights, and that Holden is not one of the "bubble players" being called into the January U.S. Men's National Team Camp, the only logical conclusion is that Holden (and MLS) intends on using his appearance on GMA to announce his decision to re-sign with MLS and the Houston Dynamo.

In light of Burnley's interest in giving Holden a trial, I would not be surprised if, like Landon Donovan's deal, part of the announcement will include a deal to loan Holden to Burnley or another EPL or SPL side during the MLS off season.

I could be wrong, but New Year's Eve is a time for predications, and based on today's Twitter announcement from Stuart Holden, my predication is that Holden will be re-signing with MLS and the Houston Dynamo.

I've long advocated that one of the reasons that MLS should do everything possible to keep Stuart Holden is that he is the kind of player that MLS can easily use for branding purposes and increasing the league's profile. Making the announcement that Holden is staying in the MLS on a nationwide morning show on the first day of a World Cup finals year on a network that will be broadcasting the World Cup finals, is a smart marketing and branding move by MLS.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Thursday, December 3, 2009

World Cup Draw Eve

Well, it's World Cup Draw Eve and football fans around the world are waiting anxiously to see which group their country is placed into, which other nations will our beloved country have to be beat to move beyond the group stage.

Here in Houston, plans are already being made by many U.S. National Team fans to gather at Nick's Place - Italian Bar & Grill to watch the draw, despite the prospect of a rare early December snowfall. I watched the 2006 World Cup Final at Nick's Place, where Italy beat France and my wife and I acquired Gerardo, a precious pet who was a loving blessing for one short, but memorable year. Since then I have watched many a football match, as well as American football games and some boxing matches, at Nick's Place. In addition, 1560 The Game, home of The Orange Slice, broadcasts live from Nick's Place all day, every Friday.

So, if you're in the Houston area and want to watch the draw with passionate football fans, join us around 11:00 tomorrow morning. For more information on Nick's Place, CLICK HERE.