Giusfredi leaves Seton Hall, close to deal with Spartak Moscow

Eliseo_giusfredi_sbi_2

All-Big East forward Eliseo Giusfredi has left the Seton Hall soccer program to pursue a professional contract in Europe.

The Seton Hall junior has chosen to forgo his final year of eligibility and will depart for Spain later today to join Spartak Moscow, which is wrapping up pre-season training. Giusfredi has yet to finalize a deal with the Russian club but is in negotiations to sign.

"It has always been my dream to play professionally and this is a great opportunity," Giusfredi told SBI on Friday. "I feel like this is the right time for me to go."

Giusfredi had planned to sign with Major League Soccer but was unable to sign with the league after MLS determined that his lack of American citizenship or a green card made him a player the league couldn’t sign, a source with knowledge of Giusfredi’s situation told SBI.

"I was ready to play here (in MLS) but the league decided I couldn’t," Giusfredi said. "It was upsetting that the league couldn’t do more for me because I wanted to stay here and play here."

Giusfredi scored 10 goals and added eight assists in 16 games for Seton Hall in 2007, earning All-Big East First Team honors. He finished his Seton Hall career with 30 goals and 15 assists in three seasons.

Giusfredi will join Spartak Moscow in Spain, where the club is training ahead of its UEFA Cup clash with French club Marseille on Wednesday. Spartak Moscow finished in second place in the Russian Premier League in 2007. The 2008 Russian season is set to begin in mid-March.

A native of Argentina and product of the River Plate youth academy, Giusfredi came to the United States as a teenager and played all four years of high school soccer in New Jersey (one year with Eastside, three more with St. Joseph, Montvale).

Giusfredi cited his desire to help his family financially, as well as his concerns about injury, as the key factors in his decision to leave school.

"I’m 21 now and I feel like I would be wasting time if I waited another year to become a professional," Giusfredi said. "I have an opportunity now and I’m going to take it." 

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49 Responses to Giusfredi leaves Seton Hall, close to deal with Spartak Moscow

  1. Rocco says:

    Good job MLS. Another one leaves. Too busy trying to pursuade washed up 30 year olds to come over.

  2. adam says:

    is there a picture of this kid that doesnt make him look like a complete munson?

  3. Sayerville FC says:

    Here’s what I don’t understand – If he doesn’t have a Green Card, why couldn’t MLS have signed him as an international player?

    Plenty of players in MLS come from the college ranks and take up an international spot because they don’t have a Green Card.

    I mean, Patrick Nyarko, to name a recent example, doesn’t have a Green Card and he was signed to Generation Adidas. And seniors Andy Iro and Julius James don’t have them, either, not to mention the myriad foreign college plaeyrs taken in recent drafts. So, that just doesn’t make sense.

    Finally, what’s up with the kid not having a Green Card despite living in the US for at least 7 years?

    I would have liked to have seen this guy in MLS but if the Green Card is a hurdle, it’s not the league’s fault that he has lived here since at least ninth grade, plus three years of college, and doesn’t have a Green Card yet.

    It doesn’t take seven years to get a Green Card. Look at all the MLS players who have gotten one in less time as examples of this.

  4. Nick says:

    @adam

    Agreed, this has to be one of the strangest looking humans on earth.

    That does suck that the MLS couldn’t get his signing done. If Spartak are willing to sign him he has to be a good prospect.

  5. Fuego Fanatico says:

    The guy has a face like Buck Russell’s hat.

    “A lot of people hate this hat. It angers a lot of people, just the sight of it. Ah, I’ll tell you a story about that on the way to school.”

  6. undrafted says:

    Maybe no team wanted to take him on as an international player? Especially one taking up a senior roster slot. He might not have been deemd eligible for a Generation Adidas contract, but that doesn’t mean he was necessarily ineligible altogether. How about a quote from within MLS on this story?

  7. Ed says:

    Maybe they could have done something similar to what they are doing/going to do with the three foreign guys at the combine? It seems to me he’s right, MLS didn’t do enough to try and sign him.

    And lay off the looks guys, it’s not like anyone of us are Fabios either.

  8. sublicon says:

    Ives, is there not a better picture of this guy? Honestly…

    link to lolfunny.com

  9. Mikemike says:

    Humans on earth?

  10. kpugs says:

    Dopey dopey doooooooo, dopey dopey dooooooo.

    Strangely, I don’t care that MLS decided not to sign him. He was always going to go to Europe anyway. I think the league DOES need to sign young players who are also quality players. But if it ends up that the kid doesn’t even have a green card and it would be a hassle, cost teams international slots they don’t want to use on a gamble, etc. I can see why he wasn’t signed.

    Don’t get me wrong, it would have been nice to see him in MLS. But it doesn’t bother me that he won’t be.

  11. kpugs says:

    Ed, this guy is about to start a professional footbal career in Europe. His life will probably become infinitely better than most of ours. Therefore, I really don’t feel bad wondering what his bone structure must look like. ;)

    There IS a better picture though: link to shupirates.com

  12. Dave says:

    It’s more likely that MLS just didn’t think he was worth the salary of a GenAd player, especially given he’s international.

    Yeah, he was a first-team Big East forward. So was Kenny Anaba, and nobody paid him the least bit of attention.

    Personally, I think MLS needs to be more aggressive about signing domestic players, but Giusfredi may have priced himself out. Not really enough info here to know for sure.

  13. northzax says:

    first off, it can easily take seven years to get a green card, depending on the quotas involved. I have a good friend who’d brother is a natural born US citizen (And whose father is a British three star general) who has been waiting 9 for her card. so yes, it can take a long time.

    sounds to me like he was hoping MLS would do all his paperwork for him.

  14. Steve T. says:

    MLS needs to sign these guys even if they plan to leave for Europe in a year or two because of the transfer fees we could receive!

  15. Fabio says:

    You are all ugly. But that’s a terrible picture. Eat more I can’t believe it’s not butter. Thank you.

    The kid played 16 games last year. He just isn’t that interesting to chew up an international slot. Of course he will phrase it as they wouldn’t do enough but it looks like a wise pass to me.

  16. fredo says:

    yea, let’s concentrate on luring luis figo, zidane or agustin delgado to MLS instead.:(

  17. dallen says:

    Here is his school pic: link to nmnathletics.com.edgesuite.net

    Not as weird as up top, but still not a great looking guy.

  18. Frank says:

    No green card, no citizenship=he’s here illegally???? Sounds like that’s the reason why he can’t play in MLS.

  19. blersh says:

    He looks like Amy Sedaris in Strangers with Candy.

  20. gld431 says:

    I was also forced to pursue my soccer career elsewhere because MLS did not want to sign me. I now play in the local 30 over rec league. Who cares about this guy, no MLS team probably wanted this guy since he would take an Int’l slot

  21. nando says:

    I’ve seen him play and have had classes with him. He’s a good kid who can flat out play. The MLS should have found some way to sign him. I agree with Rocco’s first comment.

  22. Jamie says:

    Frank, just because someone is in the country without a green card doesn’t mean they’re here illegally. There are many different visa categories (including student), which don’t require a green card. And to second northzax, from personal experience with the US immigration system, it can take a very long time to get a green card. It’s not as simple as your local congressman would have you believe. You don’t just stand in line and have one magically handed to you. The bureaucracy is dense; The personnel are often hired straight out of Wal-Mart; and it costs, even without a lawyer, a significant investment. If this player was hoping that MLS would help him get the green card, that’s not surprising, considering corporations, including MLS, do this regularly for non-Americans.

  23. Dominghosa says:

    link to theglobeandmail.com

    The top half of the story is about the G. Rossi of Canada but much of the story is about the debacle that is the Canada national soccer system. Yikes.

  24. Onionsack says:

    I saw him play last year, very very talented player. Would have easily been a top draft pick in MLS. Seton Hall also have another great player that was a freshman last year too.

    Just goes to show MLS is clueless as to how to harvest the great talent this country has to offer.

    I bet the fuck up the Kassel thing too and let him go to UMary instead of sign him, then he leaves for Europe and says screw you RB and MLS.

  25. Kosh71 says:

    Senior International spots are not things to just burn on untested – yeah he was great in college, I know that – rookies. These slots are tradeable, but have you heard of any trades to date? The big clubs like DC, LA, Houston, NYRB simply don’t have enough room for a player like this, and even if they do they might not be able to fit him under the cap. And for the smaller clubs, well if you are already hunting in South America or Europe for pros, why burn an international spot on a promising (yes) but untested rook – who might have had some serious salary demands (could be I don’t know).

    It’s easy to say that MLS made a bad move here – heaven knows they have had their share. But I don’t think that they would have easily passed on a young promising talent – who openly stated his desire to play for the league – so easily if there wasn’t some other caveat attached to the deal. So let’s spare the rushed judgement until we hear the league’s POV on this. Shall we?

    From what I saw of his highlights that Ives gave us, the kid appears to have some huge upside, and he could have been a huge boon to the league (who knows). But there are stronger soccer/business minds out there that have also been watching the kid too – and for them to pass, tells me that they are privy to something else that involoved tad bit more risk than ours – which entails bitching about this in a simple post.

    I have said my piece.

  26. Kosh71 says:

    Senior International spots are not things to just burn on untested – yeah he was great in college, I know that – rokies. These slots are tradeable, but have you heard of any trades to date? The big clubs like DC, LA, NYRB simply don’t have enough room for a player like this, and even if they do they might not be able to fit him under the cap. And for the smaller clubs, well if you are already hunting in South America or Europe for pros, why burn an international spot on a promising (yes) but untested rook – who might have had some serious salary demands (could be I don’t know).

    It’s easy to say that MLS made a bad move here – heaven knows they have had their share. But I don’t think that they would have easily passed on a young promising talent so easily if there wasn’t some other caveat attached to the deal. So let’s spare the rushed judgement until we hear the league’s POV on this. Shall we?

    From what I saw of his highlights that Ives gave us, the kis appears to have some huge upside, and he could have been a huge boon to the league (who knows). But there are stronger soccer/business minds out there that I would guess have been watching the kid too – and for them to pass, tells me that they are privy to something else that involoved much more risk than anyone of us just bitching about this in a simple post.

    I have said my piece.

  27. Kosh71 says:

    My bad, for the double podt. I am having computer issues.

  28. JaySlick says:

    “there are stronger soccer/business minds out there that have also been watching the kid too – and for them to pass, tells me that they are privy to something else that involoved tad bit more risk than ours”

    but they didnt pass on him… they signed him, he will be playing in Moscow…

    seriously, it couldnt have been about salary b/c u can easily sell him on in a year or 2 if thats what was called for and recoup at least what u put into the guy. the international slot thing is the deal-breaker, and really friggin stupid. Jonathan de Guzman lives in Netherlands since 13 and they steal him for the national team, this kid lives here the same period of time, and we cant even get him in the league b/c of his status as an international? thats not a good sign for the future in this league.

    PS: dallas has acquired international slots before (IIRC) and might be in the market for one this season.

  29. Sayerville FC says:

    Kosh 71 wrote:

    “Senior International spots are not things to just burn on untested – yeah he was great in college, I know that – rokies.”

    Kosh, foreign rookies straight out of college get drafted and signed every year.

    This year, three went in the first round: Andy Iro (England) to Columbus, Generation Adidas pick Patrick Nyarko (Ghana) to Chicago and Julius James (Trinidad & Tobago) to Toronto.

    Last year Chivas took John Cunliffe (England) and Toronto took Andrew Boyens (New Zealand) in the first round.

    In the 06 draft, Mehdi Ballouchy (Morocco) was taken as an underclassmen, as was Yura Mosivysian (Azerbajan). Both went in the first round.

    I could go back further but you get te idea.

    So, teams burn foreign slots on international players from college every year and MLS signs plenty of foreign underclassmen who don’t have Green Cards or US citizenship.

    So, there doesn’t seem to be an issue with MLS teams being reluctant to draft foregn college kids. And, there doesn’t seem to be any hesitation for MLS to sign foreign underlcassmen to GA deals if they don’t have Green Cards.

    All of which makes Ives’ and Eliseo’s clim that Green Card and citizenship issues prevented him from signing with MLS very baffling.

    Now, if the kid just wanted more money than MLS was offering and that’s why he signed overseas, that’s understandable. But to make it out like somehow his residency status kept him from signing with the league or kept MLS teams from wanting to add him to their roster seems disingenuous.

  30. Rocco says:

    I’m sure its all about $$ here guys. Hell I’m surprised MLS gets as many kids as they do now.

    One of my buddies I played with in college got drafted by an A-league team down in Texas. What did he do? Took a sales job in Mass for a technology company.

    It is going to take more time. Once the MLS players union can negotiate better salaries for incoming players they might have a chance.

    For example, take a look at a guy like Joe Vide. Good player, started about half the games last year, SJ picked him up. I think I read his salary was around 17K? Are you kidding me. He’s better off working somewhere and progressing through corporate America.

    Follow the $$.

  31. ejs says:

    he looks like hes holding a small dog while watching his agent be eaten by sharks

  32. undrafted says:

    Before this year, teams couldn’t use all of their international spots on experienced players (some were reserved for players under 25 years old).

    This seems to be more about salary than anything else. The international issue may have been a factor in him missing out on a Generation Adidas deal, but I doubt anything would prevent him from following the path of Kiki Willis or Angulo in getting into the league.

  33. Chris says:

    This is a loss for MLS, but a great opportunity for Eliseo. I go to Seton Hall and have seen this guy play on many occasions. He is special. Would have loved to see him on the Red Bulls in the near future, but it wouldnt surprise me to see his name come up in the discussion with bigger European clubs. Good luck to him!

  34. MasterShake says:

    with a picture like that on his Resume why would any team even give him a look..

    of course I am joking..but cmon..can we get a better picture please??

  35. Mario in SJ says:

    Did I imagine it or were the Senior international slots referred to in some of the above posts eliminated? Aren’t they all called foreign player slots, 7 or 8 per team?

  36. Eugene says:

    Sayerville,

    Don’t forget Dane Richards (Jamaica) last year. I would say he was one hell of a good use of an international slot.

  37. BLont says:

    If the league or an MLS team had been willing to pay what he wanted for him, he’d have been in MLS. It and they didn’t. End of story and best of luck to the lad.

  38. KingSnake says:

    Reminds me of the weasel in the old Foghorn Leghorn cartoons ( link to members.aol.com ), but as long as he scores goals, he’s beautiful.

  39. frank says:

    If he was eligible for a green card (here on a student visa, for example) and was as good as everyone says he is, and would play for what MLS would pay, don’t you think that MLS would be jumping through hoops for him with the INS?

    My wife is a naturalized US citizen so I have dealt with the bureaucratic beast first hand.

    However, if he is here illegally (overstayed a student visa or tourist visa and stayed with family, as an example) all the help that MLS could give him would be worthless…

  40. JM says:

    too bad the MLS didn’t sign him… he loves to play soccer and his skill and understanding of the game is so far beyond what many players in this country have that several MLS coaches have been watching him since his freshman season at SHU. he def. has talent, its unfortunate for soccer fans in the states that he’ll be going overseas.

  41. aristotle says:

    Ed: Sorry for this post
    ejs comment:
    “he looks like hes holding a small dog while watching his agent be eaten by sharks”

    ejs:

    I am still trying to stop laughing! I’m sorry, but this picture is bizarre. He should have destroyed it or at least stopped it from circulating! It’s really hard to believe this guy could play soccer from looking at the picture. My first impression was that Ives had made a mistake and posted the wrong picture. ejs’s comment is dead on, but to support it, how about adding a modified caption underneath from Austin Powers that fits his situation. I can’t think of one that would do ejs comment justice. Something to the effect that he is getting revenge on MLS for not signing him. How about “MLS has 48 hours to give me 1 bazillion dollars or I will blow up their headquarters!” I’m sure someone can do better. This should have been Ives’ “You Write the Caption”.

    Alright I am done being silly and mean now. The other picture is much better and I prefer to think of this as making fun of a bad picture, not Giusfredi. Doesn’t everybody have a picture that makes them look much worse than they really do?

    You can really feel the love here for MLS. Maybe some of you should contact Giusfredi and devise an evil plan! Sorry. I can’t get past that picture.

    If Giusfredi needs money I don’t know how or why he would have ended up in MLS anyway. Certainly the green card thing is not the fault of MLS. I think if MLS can just get over the hump and somehow actually start to make some decent profit in the next couple of years they will be able to raise the salaries, especially the low end. This would at least give more young players who don’t want to leave the US right away a better option.

  42. maxi11 says:

    how do you know this guy?

    i know him and his family, they are really good people and i hope he does well in russia and gets an opportunity to play pro soccer.

  43. twiny says:

    no one would care about this doofus if ives didn’t report on him. i think most people here would rather see a “all things the same at red bull park site” post than something about this freeloading bitch.

    and do we have any news regarding who his teeth have signed with? i heard lyon want to take a look at what his teeth can do. he’s got mad teeth, yo. teeth. der dee dar doo doo, ive got mad teeth. thats why i came to the US. im buddied up with ives and i need mad dentistry, yo. and if i get really good, i’ll play for my home country instead of the country i’ve sponged off of my whole life. thanks, toothly!

  44. aristotle says:

    twiny:

    Your giving us mixed signals. Do you like Giusfredi or don’t you?

  45. Mikhail says:

    Да нафиг он нужен в нашем Спартаке этот ваш клоун.

  46. Lex says:

    Huge lost for MLS!I saw this kid live and saw when Seton Hall would scrimmage the Red Bulls.
    The last time I saw him play RB he was the best player on the field.It just goes to show how stupid MLS coaches or talent scouts are!!!!!!!!!!

  47. RussianBear!andVOdka! says:

    GO GO SPARTAK MOSKOW!!!

  48. edgar leonardo says:

    I’m so happy for this guy, I’m so glad to say that I had the opportunity to play with him. Also with his little brother Ismael, both of them we’re great players, but Eliseo was one of the best playes I ever see…

    Es uno de los mejores jugadores que e conocido desde que vivo aqui en los Estados Unidos…
    (This is for you men…)
    I hope you remember this names?
    National Youth Games Birmingham Alabama…

    1.Sly- Nigerian (Head coach)
    2.Giften- Nigerian (coach)
    3.Edgar Tapia- Mexican
    4.Luis Granizo- Ecuadorian
    5.Daniel Lopez- Colombian
    6.Bryan Correo- Colombian
    7.Kenned Corrales- Colombian
    8.Renzo Cisneros- Peruvian
    9.Gabriel (Gabilan)- Colombian
    10.Bryan X. – Peruvian
    11.Renzo Sanchez- Peruvian
    12.Justin Corrales- Colombian
    13.Henry Guadalupe- Ecuadorian
    14.Nestor (Harry Potter)- Argentinian
    15.Glenn Retuerto- Peruvian
    16.Boris (Gordo)- Ecuadorian

    AND NOT FORGET THE BEST ONE IN THE TEAM…
    17-ELISEO GIUSFREDI- Argentinian
    GOOD LUCK FROM ALL OF US…
    Te deseamos lo mejor…
    PATERSON CLASH…

  49. Exequiel says:

    One of my best friend finally made it, for all those haters that dont know him.. If he already signed a contract in Russia is because he deserved it. I wish luck for you my brother dont forget your friends here in the US that support you to the end.. Eli te deseo lo mejor.. your friend Exequiel Villegas