MNT Sep 1, 2012
The final day of the European transfer meant moving day for several veteran players of the U.S. Men's National Team, with deals being decided literally at the last minute. The changes represent a big opportunity, including moves to bigger leagues, bigger clubs, and European Cup competition. Here's a review:
CARLOS BOCANEGRA (RACING SANTANDER)
The U.S. captain found himself in the unfortunate position of having to leave a club he loved, but with Rangers having to start anew in the fourth tier of Scottish football a change was inevitable. 'Los heads to Racing Santander in the Spanish second division on a one-year loan. Los Racinguistas fell out of the top flight for the first time since 1997, and are expecting Bocanegra to help the team make a quick leap back to La Liga. Estadio El Sardinero hosted the USA's visit to Spain in 2008, a 1-0 loss.
CLINT DEMPSEY (TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR)
The subject of intense speculation throughout the summer, Dempsey's dreams of playing at a bigger club reached an unexpected height when Tottenham Hotspur swooped in last minute. The former club of U.S. head coach Jurgen Klinsmann, Spurs finished in fourth place last season in the Premier League table and narrowly missed out on the Champions League, and will compete in the Europa League. Dempsey will play with former U.S. international goalkeeper Brad Friedel and a potent Spurs attack. Deuce should fit in great at a club who's motto is Audere est Facere - To Dare Is to Do.
MAURICE EDU (STOKE CITY)
After three championships in the Scottish Premier League and a solid career at Rangers, Edu makes the jump to England's top flight and links up with fellow U.S. international Geoff Cameron at Stoke City. Looking to improve on their finish from the last campaign, Stoke made a flurry of signings this summer and have already collected an impressive draw at Arsenal to start the season. Stoke City manager Tony Pulis cited Klinsmann's recommendation as a reason for bring Mo to Britannia Stadium.
OGUCHI ONYEWU (MALAGA)
The big man in the middle goes out for a season-long loan to Malaga in La Liga in Spain. Entering it's fifth season in the top division, Malaga's victory in the final matchday last year meant a fourth-place finish in the league and a chance to play in the UEFA Champions League. Gooch will have a shot at playing against his former club AC Milan, who were drawn into Group C along with Zenit St. Petersburg and Anderlecht.