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Sign old stars vs sign young players

About 10 years ago, the MLS was seen as a league for players who were thinking of hanging cleats. A peaceful retirement in the USA. That’s why Beckham, Gerrard, Drogba, Pirlo and Henry came for at their 30-somethings. But in the recent years it has been the opposite. European players with no professional experience or very little, are coming to grow their careers. Some come to the USA to grown doubly on one hand continue their dream of becoming footballers and the other come to be educated in American universities.

That’s the case of the 3 finalists for Rookie of the Year in MLS 2017, Julian Gressel (German), Abu Danladi (Ghana) and Jack Elliot (English). They arrived USA with 19 years or younger. They were given scholarships by a university and then find the way to the MLS Superdraft. And it’s not isolated case. The NCAA has several players trained in academies worldwide. This is reflected in increased European present in the Superdraft, for example in 2014 only four European were chosen, by contrast of the 16 selected in 2017.

And others who, not being selected by any MLS team, opt to remain in the country in the USL or NASL (second division). But European players with just 20 years bypassing college prefer to play in these leagues in search of opportunities that were closed in the old continent. Cases like Jack Blake (English), Joshua Currais (Spanish) or Sem de Wit (Dutch) all under 23 years and decided give them a change to their careers signing team in these leagues without going through the NCAA and waiting to be called by a superior team.

The US team has benefited from some of these cases, for example, Tom Dwyer (English, 3 games and 2 goals with the team USA national team) trained English teams, he won a scholarship for college, then go to the MLS, get nationality and play for the United States.

Other cases are the players that, in an early stage of their careers, decide to come to US to continue its grow, but without going through college. The young englishman Jack Harrison and the Hungarian Dániel Sallói, who arrived as teenagers finished their academic training and then went to MLS. Both are promises for their teams, Harrison has been called for England U21 and Sallói to U19 of Hungary. Harrison was one of the sensations this season with New York City FC. It won’t be a surprise if he would be in the next pre season with Manchester City.

And when I thought that the American soccer was doing their best to remove the fame league to retire, LA Galaxy signed Zlatan Ibrahimovic and there's rumors about DC United signing Wayne Rooney.

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