What would you do if you were Kenny Cooper?July 28, 2008 • By Soccer By Ives
Photo by ISIphotos.com
(No, there are no updates on Kenny Cooper’s transfer decision. It appears will be waiting at least one more day, if not longer for a final conclusion. If you are wondering what is taking so long, you may not realize everything involved in this big decision. With that in mind, consider the following:)
You are Kenny Cooper, a 23-year-old American striker with two transfer bids to consider. What do you do?
Yes, it may sound a bit like a bad impression of Dennis Hopper in Speed but the question is a good one. If you are Cooper do you go with the bid from Norwegian power Rosenborg or English First Division club Cardiff City? It is the question Cooper is in the midst of trying to answer as two European clubs and one league wait with baited breath to see if the big kid from Texas will stay or go.
Do you take more money from Rosenborg in a lesser-known league to play with a team that plays its share of UEFA Cup and occasional Champions League soccer, or do you take less money and join Cardiff City with an eye toward possible promotion to the EPL, the richest league in the world?
You can choose A or B, or possibly C, which would mean staying in MLS at an increased salary with the hope being that your continued success leads to bigger offers from bigger clubs down the road. You’re playing for your hometown team, for a coach you’ve known and respected for year. Do you stay another season and enjoy dominating MLS?
Cooper has to know how lucky he is to even have the decision. If you had asked Taylor Twellman the same question he would have had his passport stamped before you could get the word "or" out of your mouth. The same goes for Shalrie Joseph, who still dreams of Europe even as he continues to lead the league’s best team and enjoys a big (by MLS standards) new contract.
It might seem like a no-brainer but sometimes the best moves are the ones you don’t make. Just ask Eddie Johnson, who could have jumped on an offer from Derby County, but chose to wait a while. He eventually joined Fulham and now heads into a second season in the EPL while Derby is back in the First Division. Jozy Altidore was seriously considering making a move to Reading, a club that pursued him for years, before things fell apart. Now instead of having joined newly-relegated Reading (and yes, you could argue that Altidore would have kept Reading up) Altidore is set to join La Liga runners-up and Champions League participants Villarreal.
You see? The decisions aren’t nearly as easy as some would like to believe. All three options have their merits, which makes it that much tougher for Cooper and his people to reach a decision. Perhaps staying in MLS leads to a move to an EPL team in the winter or next summer. Perhaps another injury like the one Cooper suffered last year costs him another year and the chance to make a similar move a year from now.
These are all the questions and scenarios that have Cooper so torn. It is far from an easy decision, no matter how easy it may seem on the outside.
So, tell me, what would YOU do?