Which MLS Player Is the Most Hated?

While it might not be the most drawing thing to sports purists like myself, professional sports relies on players that attract fans, and conversely those that fans love to hate. So without further ado, which MLS player is the most polarizing?

If you vote Other, please specify in the comments section below.

After receiving some feedback on the poll, I’ll show some statistics that show which of these players deserve the bad reputation and which ones have the stats to back up a fiery personality.

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New Opportunities

I have now been added to the soccernewsday.com team as a Sporting KC columnist.  This site will continue to stay around, and I’ll use it as a personal account of my ventures as a member of the media at Sporting Park and whatever interesting things I feel the need to post.  There will be a lot of videos and photos that I will post.

I urge anyone reading this to check out Soccer Newsday, there is a lot of great content written by columnists covering specific aspects of soccer.

Also, while I have not been posting on here, I’ve been posting at cheekybackheel.com about Sporting KC, AC Milan, and MLS as a whole.  I will continue to contribute there once in a while.

Poll: Kei Kamara’s Top Ten Goals

On Wednesday, Kei Kamara completed a loan move to Norwich City of the English Premier League. Watch the videos below and vote in the poll which one you thought was Kei’s best goal during his three years in Kansas City. A top ten will be determined from the most voted on goals and the top ten will be revealed in two weeks.

2011 vs. Toronto FC (Start this video at 2:00)

2011 vs. Seattle Sounders (Start this video at 0:50)

2011 vs. New England (Start this video at 0:30)

2011 vs. DC United

2012 vs. LA Galaxy

2010 vs. Chivas

2010 vs. Philadelphia

2010 vs. Real Salt Lake

2012 vs. Red Bulls (Start this video at 1:58)

2012 vs. Vancouver Whitecaps (Start this video at 4:10)

Sporting KC trades 2nd Round Pick for Josh Gardner

Making the first new signing of the MLS transfer season, Sporting Kansas City signed 30-year-old midfielder/defender Josh Gardner in a trade with the Montreal Impact. The Impact received Sporting KC’s second round draft pick in the upcoming SuperDraft.

Josh Gardner made six appearances for Montreal last season, a one-year stop part of a long MLS career.  He started his career being drafted 13th overall by the Los Angeles Galaxy in 2004. He has played for 4 MLS teams (LA, Seattle, Columbus Crew, Montreal Impact) and scored 10 goals in 6 seasons.  

This will be a good depth signing for Sporting KC, Gardner should be able to fill in at left back when needed.  I would expect at least two more defenders to be signed in the next month. As always in the offseason, Robb Heineman has been tweeting cryptic updates about Vermes visiting Spain presumably to finish deals with European players.  These deals will only be announced sometime in January.

Here are some highlights of Josh Gardner’s career:

Sporting Victorious in US Open Cup Final

The campaign to paint the wall in 2012 has been a success. Or as I would like to think of it, it’s halfway done.

Under a huge rainbow, the players took the field for the important matchup. It seemed right that we would take the trophy on this day. The game wasn’t so pretty, but both teams fought admirably for 120 minutes.

The play was, for the most part, rather ugly. Once again, Sporting found itself with as many shots on goal as the Sounders had shots, but the game still stood scoreless. Not until a handball was called on Patrick Ianni was the deadlock broken. Michael Gspurning guessed wrong on Kei Kamara’s penalty kick, jumping to his right as the ball rolled calmly into the other side of the net. As Kansas City fans couldn’t help but reluctantly expect, Seattle equalized two minutes later from a Zach Scott header.

Both teams stood tough through 30 minutes of extra time, but fatigue seemed to set in as no quality chances were really created. The penalty shootout loomed in the minds of everyone at Livestrong Sporting Park. Kei Kamara stepped up to take the first kick, which this time was driven to Gspurning’s correctly guessed right-hand side, off his hand, and into the net. Brad Evans smashed the next kick into the net as Jimmy Nielsen leaped the opposite direction. Then the Seattle Sounders took a 2-1 lead in the shootout with Roger Espinoza firing the ball straight into the keeper’s hands and Mark Burch hitting the roof of the net. Matt Besler quickly shot his off the crossbar and in the goal. From there Ozzie Alonso missed the goal completely and kept the score even. Graham Zusi missed the next but it was canceled out by the White Puma leaping to the right and knocking away newly-signed Sounder Christian Tiffert’s attempt. That would set up Paulo Nagamura to hit what would prove to be the game-winning penalty. Gspurning saved it and was then called back for stepping off his line. Nagamura sent the next shot the other direction and ignited the crowd at LSP as Sporting held the 3-2 lead. As Eddie Johnson stepped to the spot, it appeared that the Sounders had no hope in front of the cradle of deafening noise and atmosphere that was the KC Cauldron on that night. It seemed inevitable that he would miss and surreal as the ball was sent clear over the crossbar. Kansas City celebrated the first trophy in any sport since 2004, when the Wizards won the same cup.

Here is Kei Kamara’s regulation penalty in regulation:

Celebration in the Cauldron as the players come over immediately after the game concluded:

I’ll leave you with a couple pictures from the match:

Craig Rocastle signed by Missouri Comets

Former KC Wizard Craig Rocastle has been signed by the Missouri Comets of the MISL. Rocastle played regularly in 2010 with the Wizards but made no appearances in 2011 with Sporting due to an injury suffered during Gold Cup play with his country Grenada. He was waived by Sporting after the 2011 season.

Rocastle played the last season with Greek Second Division team Thrasyvoulos Fylis in Athens. Prior to signing with them, he had signed a contract with the Missouri Comets but did not train with or play, a week later he signed with Thrasyvoulos.

Among many others, Craig has played with Chelsea, Sheffield Wednesday, and Barnsley.