Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Jeff Cunningham pursues Europe option
by Ridge Mahoney, January 2nd, 2011 3:26PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  americans abroad, mls

MOST COMMENTED

[MLS] An impasse in negotiations with Columbus has prompted striker Jeff Cunningham, the No. 2 all-time goalscorer in MLS history, to test options overseas.

Agent Jan Schiefloe is finalizing arrangements that will send Cunningham to Danish club Randers and an unspecified Norwegian club next week. He will train with the teams in hope of getting an offer to continue his career overseas. Cunningham -- with 132 goals second only to Jaime Moreno -- entered the Re-Entry Draft in December after netting 11 goals last season for FC Dallas, which declined to pick up his option.

“I am quite surprised that more MLS teams haven't pursued Jeff,” said Schiefloe in an e-mail. “In the last two years, he's scored 28 goals, which is second in MLS after Conor Casey (29). I see many MLS teams looking near and far for a proven goalscorer, and time and time again pay big money for players who don't produce, while Jeff, who is proven over 13 seasons in MLS, can be signed now at a relative bargain.”

Cunningham, 34, passed through Stage 1 of the Re-Entry Draft unclaimed; apparently no team wanted him at the 2011 salary stipulated in his contract (his base salary in 2010 was $220,000 and players normally receive a five percent increase for each option year). The Crew picked him in Stage 2.

In Stage 2, unless a player has agreed with the league on a salary, teams that claim players must negotiate a new deal. Last week, the Crew and Cunningham were said to be far apart in their discussions.

“We made an offer that was rejected and he made a counterproposal that was a bit far-fetched,” Crew technical director Brian Bliss said to the Columbus Dispatch a few days before Christmas. “That was the last conversation we had.”

Like a few of the 11 players selected in Stage 2, Cunningham is being asked to take a hefty cut from his 2010 salary.

If Cunningham and the Crew cannot come to terms, Columbus will retain a right of first refusal for his rights within MLS. He scored 62 goals in 208 games during his first seven MLS seasons (1998-2004) for the Crew, and has also played for Colorado, Real Salt Lake, and Toronto FC as well as FC Dallas.

He scored 33 goals in 66 games after joining Dallas in early August of 2008. He hit his high-water seasonal mark of 17 goals in 2009 to lead the league, a feat he also accomplished in 2006 with 16 for RSL.



0 comments
  1. Joe Grady
    commented on: January 3, 2011 at 7:58 a.m.
    Good luck Jeff, I hope you make it in Europe, I really do. But a 34 yo American just moving over there? Doubt anything good is happening with that. Your 'upside' is already known. Surprising how "crappy" MLS can be to it' vets, but it IS a business.
  1. Joy Hottington
    commented on: January 3, 2011 at 12:39 p.m.
    How is MLS being crappy to him? He had a chance to be picked by all teams for $220k. They deemed (correctly) that he isn't worth it. I'd pay him $150k if I was an MLS team with a need for an older goalscorer with no upside. Perhaps he can find more $ in Europe... I'd be surprised.
  1. Laurent Alves
    commented on: January 3, 2011 at 3:54 p.m.
    Good Luck Jeff.I remember when you would stop by my soccer store in Tampa and chat about soccer. I was very lucky to watch you play for USF in Tampa,Florida. You have always been a class act. I wish you much success.
  1. Brad Matheny
    commented on: January 3, 2011 at 11:38 p.m.
    Jeff Cunningham is the best of the best. I remember training with him at 6am at USF, just so he could get a third work out in everyday: because he had decided to go pro. He deserves the top salary from the MLS, who he has helped develop the brand since almost the beginning. He should also fetch a pretty penny in Europe. Big up Jeffrey, much respect!!

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




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Sam Kerr sets NWSL record with four goals in a game    
A traumatic week for the NWSL's Sky Blue FC ended on a bright note as Samantha ...
Three U.S. refs head to U-17 World Cup     
U.S. referee Jair Marrufo and U.S. assistant referees Frank Anderson and Corey Rockwell have been selected ...
Lloyd nominated for top FIFA women's award    
Carli Lloyd, winner of back-to-back FIFA awards, is the lone American in the shortlist of 10 ...
What They're Saying: Michael Bradley    
"As athletes with the platform we have, with the role that we play in society, especially ...
Mexico beats USA in Concacaf U-15 Championship final     
After convincingly winning its first four games at the Concacaf U15 Championship, the USA fell, 2-0, ...
Crowd Count: Fire sets record at Toyota Park    
The Chicago Fire drew a sellout crowd of 21,891, its largest ever at Toyota Park for ...
USMNT 40 Tracker: Pulisic opens season with goal, assist    
Christian Pulisic needed all of 22 minutes to score his first Bundesliga goal of the season ...
Van Damme gets wish: Galaxy issues transfer to Antwerp    
Belgian defender Jelle Van Damme is heading home. The Galaxy sold the 33-year-old center back to ...
What They're Saying: Leonardo Jardim    
"Even you, if tomorrow another newspaper offers you a contract where you will earn 15 times ...
College women's soccer: Five storylines for 2017    
The 2017 college women's soccer season kicks off on Friday. The big news is that U.S. ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives