Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Soumare, exiled by Fire, returns to France
by Ridge Mahoney, August 26th, 2009 7AM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

[MLS] At a transfer fee reported as $1.4 million and $2.1 million by various outlets, and said by a source to be $2 million, MLS and Chicago have agreed to sell defender Bakary Soumare to French club Boulogne. The club - along with a few other teams -- had expressed interest in Soumare in June, shortly after the European season ended, but MLS and the Fire tamped down the inquiry though an offer was reportedly made. A native of Mali, Soumare, 23, moved to the Paris suburb of St. Denis at age 3 and to New York at age 15.

Though uncertainty about Fire teammate Wilman Conde has quieted as the season unraveled for ex-Chicago coach Juan Carlos Osorio, who had also coached Conde in Colombia, the MLS team had hoped to keep Soumare for the entire season in its bid to win a second MLS Cup. But he and head coach Denis Hamlett tangled in the locker room at halftime of 3-2 loss to Houston Aug. 9; Soumare was replaced by Mike Banner at halftime and didn't played in three subsequent games. The team, not the league as erroneously reported by some outlets, fined both men undisclosed amounts.

French Web sites state he has signed a four-year contract. No salary figures have been reported and no confirmation has yet been released by the Fire nor MLS. His MLS base salary is listed as $105,000 and total compensation as $138,000 for the 2009 season.

Under a formula adopted two years ago, a team that loses a player in a transfer deal receives between 60 percent and two-thirds of the fee. A 1.4-million euro deal converts to slightly more than $2 million, of which Chicago would receive approximately $1.2 million.

Chicago drafted Soumare as a generation adidas player out of the University of Virginia with the second overall pick of the 2007 SuperDraft. He played 19 regular-season games in his rookie season and last year played 28 matches and earned selection to the MLS Best XI, which prompted his first callup last February to Mali's national team.

He grew up in Paris before moving to New York as a teenager, and is an admirer of fellow Malian Freddy Kanoute, who played in France (Lyon) and England (West Ham, Tottenham) before moving to Spanish club Sevilla.

"He's one of my countrymen," said Soumare of Kanoute in an interview last October. "Obviously I like PSG because I grew up in the Paris region. They haven't been doing so well the past five or six years but that's the team I grew up with.

"In England, my first team is Chelsea. They've done a great job building a great team with players from so many countries while retaining a core of English players. It's fantastic.

"It's not that easy to build a team with players from different backgrounds and different cultures. [Jose] Mourinho did a great job and I really enjoy watching them play. They have a lot of players from Africa and any time you see African players do well, it makes you proud."

Boulogne earned promotion to Ligue 1 for the first time last spring and hired Coach Laurent Guyot after the man who had guided it to promotion, Philippe Montanier, left to take over at Valenciennes.



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Toronto FC becomes sixth MLS club to launch second team    
[USL PRO] A sixth MLS club announced plans to enter a second team in USL PRO ...
A glimpse into thinking of Sounders' brain trust    
[MLS SPOTLIGHT] The closest thing any MLS club is to a European-style members club, like Barcelona ...
Ferguson named Honorary All-American    
[NSCAA] The NSCAA will honor Sir Alex Ferguson as the 2014 Honorary All-American at the organization's ...
Keane, Martins and Nguyen are MLS MVP finalists    
[AWARDS] Robbie Keane, Obafemi Martins and Lee Nguyen, who will all take part in the conference ...
Well, that's rather embarrassing     
[VIDEO PICK: Off the Post] During a scoreless tie with Lithuania earlier this week, Ukraine midfielder ...
Howard wins second Athlete of the Year honor    
[AWARDS] Tim Howard was voted the U.S. Soccer Male Athlete of the Year for the second ...
What They're Saying: Nathan Arnold     
"This is just a starting point for me. Back home I did my mates' hair and ...
Good or bad news on D.C stadium front?    
[MLS SPOTLIGHT] So what's the meaning of the pronouncement by Washington, D.C. mayor-elect Muriel E. Bowser ...
What They're Saying: Phaedra Almajid    
"I will be looking over my shoulder for the rest of my life. It's cost me ...
Blake carries Reggae Boyz to title    
[CARIBBEAN CUP] Andre Blake made his reputation as a shot-blocker for his prowess in shootouts at ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives