11617_isi_yedlindeandre_bpi_mb_burton_v_newcastle_.23.3950312 Matt Bunn/isiphotos.com
Americans Abroad

Three Yanks Tally; Gatt on the Go; Boyd Rumors Swirl

Three struggling Americans—Paul Arriola, Joe Corona, and Desevio Payne—scored goals over the weekend for their club teams, generating a bit of good news for themselves and for American soccer fans.
BY Brian Sciaretta Posted
January 16, 2017
8:00 AM

Arriola hits golazo in Tijuana rout

Paul Arriola has occasionally shown glimpses of a high level of talent but translating that to consistent production on a weekly basis at the club level has proved elusive.

But perhaps the Chula Vista native is putting it all together just weeks before his 22nd birthday. On Friday night he scored this magnificent goal for Tijuana in the 61st minute that put his team up 3-2 on Pumas. After this goal it quickly turned into a laugher as Tijuana eventually won 6-2.

The final goal of this game came courtesy of Joe Corona, who has endured a few rough seasons in Mexico. After returning to Tijuana recently from a loan to the second division, it was great to see him get on the board—even with a relatively easy tap-in.

The win was Tijuana’s first of the young Clausura season after it dropped last weekend’s opener.

Payne scores a fantastic goal

Desevio Payne dealt with a variety of injuries in 2016 but the South Carolina-born, Dutch-raised Payne welcomed the new year in style. He got his first start of the season in FC Groningen’s first game back following the Eredivisie winter break.

The 21-year-old scored his first Eredivisie goal of his career in the second half, giving Groningen a 2-0 lead en route to a 4-1 win over lowly Heracles.

Payne earned the start largely because first-choice right back Hans Hateboer was out with a yellow card suspension. Hateboer, however, is likely to be leaving the club at the end of the season and Payne could see more opportunities in the weeks ahead as Groningen looks to build for the future.

Yedlin and Newcastle retake first place

Last season DeAndre Yedlin was a key player for Sunderland and helped the Premier League club stave off relegation. In 2016-17, Yedlin has promotion on his mind. The Seattle native doesn’t start every game for Championship side Newcastle United—head coach Rafa Benitez rotates his squad aggressively and successfully—but Yedlin starts more often than not.

On Saturday Yedlin went the distance for Newcastle in a 2-1 road win over Brentford as the club moved one point clear of Brighton and Hove Albion for the top spot in the Championship. More importantly it now has a seven-point lead over third-place Leeds United for the second automatic promotion spot.

Gatt watch continues

Josh Gatt, 25, spent the last week on a trial with FC Nuremburg of the 2.Bundesliga but the club announced over the weekend that both sides mutually agreed to end the trial.

It is not yet known what is next for Gatt but there have been MLS teams asking around. After three serious ACL injuries since 2013, a long-term deal would probably seem very appealing to the Michigan native—no matter what league.

Terrence Boyd on the move?

It’s looking very likely that Terrence Boyd will be leaving RB Leipzig sooner rather than later. German media has even reported that the U.S. national team forward, who is quite a ways down the depth chart, is free to look for another club. Bild has reported that English Championship club Huddersfield Town is a possible destination.

Huddersfield is in a poromotion battle and is led by German-American and former U.S international David Wagner. Before coaching at Huddersfield, Wagner coached Borussia Dortmund’s U-23 team where Boyd was the leading scorer.

Due to injuries and tough competition at Leipzig, it has been over two years since Boyd played regularly. Joining a familiar face seems like a smart move at this point although with Huddersfield overachieving this year, it is unclear how much Wagner will want to change his formula.

Gonzalez, Pachuca off to strong start

Omar Gonzalez is one of the few players who has won titles both in MLS and Liga MX and now he is looking to win multiple trophies in both leagues.

On Saturday, Gonzalez went a full 90 for Pachuca in a 1-0 win over Jaguares Chiapas, giving the club a perfect six points through two weeks of the Clausura season.

If he continues to play well in could have U.S. national team ramifications. Right now the starting central defense pairing for the U.S. national team is Geoff Cameron and John Brooks. Cameron is still injured at Stoke City and the longer he remains injured, the more likely it is that Bruce Arena will opt for a back-up in March. It is unknown who comes in should Cameron continue to be sidelined. Current options are Chad Marshall, Matt Hedges, Walker Zimmerman, Steve Birnbaum, and Gonzalez.

The good news for Gonzalez is that Arena is perhaps more familiar with him than any other coach. He knows how good Gonzalez can be when he is at the top of his game. That should be all the incentive Gonzalez needs to continue to play like an anchor of a leading Liga MX team. 

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