Report: Cameron returns to Stoke training with numerous teams interested

Geoff Cameron of Stoke City

 Photo by ISIPhotos.com

By DAN KARELL

Geoff Cameron is back in first team training with Stoke City after his post-World Cup break but its unclear whether he’ll remain with the club for this season.

After spending the last two seasons at right back for Stoke, manager Mark Hughes brought in new competition at the position in Phil Bardsley and according to the Stoke Sentinel, five clubs in England and four in Germany are interested in Cameron’s services.

The nine clubs reportedly interested in Cameron include Sunderland, Hull City, West Bromwich Albion, Swansea City, and Southampton from England and Schalke 04, Eintracht Frankfurt, and two other unnamed German clubs.

The report states that Cameron is hoping to seek assurances from Hughes about potentially playing in central defense or central midfield, more natural positions for Cameron and the positions where he has performed the best for both the U.S. Men’s National Team and the Houston Dynamo in the past.

Cameron has one year left on his contract with a club option for another year, and Stoke are not in a situation where they would have to sell Cameron for to financial reasons.

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What do you think of this report? Do you see Cameron remaining at Stoke City this season? Should he consider a move to the Bundesliga?

Share your thoughts below.

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69 Responses to Report: Cameron returns to Stoke training with numerous teams interested

  1. JayAre says:

    Schalke 04. Champions League football. Bigger paycheck.

    • JayAre says:

      Oh yeah & the chance to compete for a league title in Europe. He’s 29 there isn’t much to lose. it’s no like if he sits on the bench for a month it will hurt his “development” that only applies to young guys.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Let’s be real about it, Cameron was brought in to play a 442 by Pulis, just like what he had in Houston. He’d be well suited to an English team playing British hoofball. If you sign him to a team like Swansea, he’s probably going to disappoint because they play technical soccer and he’s a little sloppy. What he needs is a team that wants physical play and work rate, and is willing to trade defensive presence for some sloppiness and the occasional brainfreeze on his part.

      UCL UCL UCL doesn’t really address fit. UCL ball might suit a player or not. It really depends which team, their style, their depth, and how he fits in. For a while he was a good Stoke fit for Pulis. He needs to seek out a similar situation.

      Considering how Hughes did at QPR I wouldn’t take this very hard. It may be a blessing in disguise.

      • kobrien says:

        Any CB that has the technical skiils to be an effective outside back in the EPL is not “sloppy” by any means.

        • The Imperative Voice says:

          As a Dynamo fan, I might have seen him play once or twice, but dismiss if you feel like it. As a CM he had a tendency to roll balls over the endline hitting passes straight upfield through cracks in the defense. He didn’t quite play the angle ball you need on a through ball well enough.

          He also, for that matter, had a tendency to want to just run straight upfield, and thus had trouble playing in tight spaces in the middle under pressure.

          As a back, he tends to like to hit long outlet passes, including risky diagonals. His accuracy is less than perfect. He is more adventurous than a pure possession guy. Those giveaways make him sloppy.

          Or are we going to tell me he’s perfect? There’s a reason he ended up supplanted for Brazil. FJ does not give the ball away as much and can hit a better cross.

          He is not Gooch-sloppy but for English purposes, the EPL sides like ‘em tidy, particularly Swansea. I felt like he was more effective at Stoke because they were content to play hard defense, whack the ball out of the back, and wait for free kicks and other isolated situations for goals. In a more precision environment, he will become the weak link.

          He isn’t EJ or Gooch sloppy but it’s all relative.

      • Francois says:

        Geoff Cameron is very good with the ball at his feet, and can pass well. Hughes wouldn’t have started him at right back if he wasn’t comfortable with his skills in those areas. Not sure if serious, but you are way off base with your assessment.

      • alf says:

        Is this your ‘expert’ opinion?

        • Creige says:

          Anyone who watched Geoff at Stoke or Houston know he has good ball control and eye for the pass (his crossing is meh though). There are plenty of highlights to support that.

          • The Imperative Voice says:

            I was “anyone.” He played here.

            He is not a big fan of playing sideways, and he tends to force the ball upfield.

            I always felt like his virtues were kamikazi runs downfield, and getting to the endline and hitting a ground cross back in.

            I do not feel like he is a great, calm, composed back. He is more in the manner of an athletic back, although he is skilled relative to some people like Gooch who have been of the type.

            It’s not the highlights, it’s relying on it everyday. He’s lanky and thus not great with defenders on top of him in tight spaces……better on the run. He can be good going forward, but he can also roll half a dozen passes over the sideline in a game. He doesn’t suck but it’s a tradeoff.

        • The Imperative Voice says:

          Appears to be Hughes’ as well, QED, tyvm.

      • The Superfluous Title says:

        I would argue that Hughes has proven himself at Stoke. Best finish in a long time for the Oatcakers this past season. Pulis never did that though he was admirable in other areas.

  2. Joe says:

    I actually wouldn’t mind Cameron staying at Stoke. Surprised that Schalke are interested though.

    • Bean says:

      There has only been one player in the Prem with more tackles, and interceptions over the last couple of seasons.Cameron has been dominant.

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        Cameron’s issue has never been aggression, it has been the “controlled” part of controlled aggression. He dives in and gets out of position a lot. Strong intuitive defender, not the best soccer IQ guy.

    • Ali Dia says:

      Schalke stick out, you’re right. This is rarely a good thing… makes me nervous that they see him as a versatile squad player who will not be a first choice at any one position.

      Outside of that, I see nothing on this list of greasy meat pies that is definitively better than Stoke, where he has at least settled.

  3. Ian says:

    Sunderland: Where American dreams go to die.

    Don’t go there, Geoff.

    • Mark from LA says:

      I followed Altidore at Sunderland last year. Sunderland’s now a decent place to play as long as Poyet is there, with a caveat. Poyet’s a good manager, and he’s got a chance to have a similar run with Sunderland as Martinez did with Wigan. Cameron would be a decent CB upgrade for Sunderland.

      The caveat is definitely the front office. My problem with Sunderland’s current roster is a lack of midfielders that lead the team naturally into good flowing attacks. If Sunderland doesn’t address this then this year will feel similar to last year and Sunderland will struggle to stay up. I also think that Borini, while a very useful player, is not worth 14 million pounds when midfield is the bigger problem, and also when Liverpool probably value him for less. No need to overpay, if Borini does sell for that much it’s indicative of a problem.

      If the front office addresses the midfield need then players should go to Sunderland, Poyet will give them a fair opportunity for a place, and even give players second chances over time as well.

      • Ali Dia says:

        This is very accurate in my view. The on-field quality is limited by an abject lack of midfield creativity. This would be a boring team in the Championship. Maybe even League One. Unfortunately, the kinds of players they need are exactly the kinds of players they can never get. Show me a creative 20-something MF of quality and I will show you a player you would rather play in Ligue 2 than die a cold lonely death in Sunderland.

        As you have stated, ownership/front office team is incompetent beyond belief. They are clueless and would have a tough time hanging on to anybody with any quality at all — Juventus send players like Giaccherini to Sunderland like parents send their kids to Outward Bound to improve their discipline and show them how good they have it I guarantee hey will fire Poyet (who is decent but not Martinez, although to his credit he avoided relegation where Martinez did not). Probably his succesor too before the season is done. The only stability at the club seems to involve retaining the high-profile mistakes of the previous regimes.

        Making matters worse, no sane player wants to be at Sunderland. It is an abysmal place that Newark would not want as a sister city. Homeless people sleep in the empty trophy case when there is no more room in the similarly vacant place at Newcastle. A barely glorified holding cell filled with flawed, broken players awaiting an unlikely parole – it is not surprising that the only players who appear at all inspired are the younger S. American imports, who seem to retain some measure of hope in an Ellis Island sort of way.

        I am done with Sunderland and the US should be too. We cannot fix their problems. Don’t need them creating ones for us. Extract Jozy and set that dumpster ablaze.

  4. JakeTheSnake says:

    Schalke would be an upgrade, but most of those English teams would be pointless swaps. Except for probably Southampton.

    • Kosh says:

      haven’t you seen the mass exit from Southampton? They could be the worse of the bunch this year.

      But I agree I don’t see how any one else from that English list is better.

      • tim says:

        Have you not seen how much money they’ve made off the exodus? Soton will be fine with reinvestment. Also, they’ve a top class academy, who knows what gems are lying in wait there.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      I disagree, it sound like Hughes is rendering him surplus, which would mean status quo would be setting up a Julio Cesar bench-ornament scenario. If he’s been told to move……move.

      • GW says:

        Or Hughes could be thinking along the same lines as JK i.e. realizing that Cameron is best inside either at center back or at holding midfield.

        Bardsley brings the kind of offensive capability Cameron could not provide either for Stoke or the USMNT.

      • Anthony says:

        The article in the mirror states otherwise and Hughes wants to keep him: link to mirror.co.uk

  5. Thomas says:

    I think if wants to move to play DM or CB, Southampton would be the best option. Dejan Lovren left which leaves a CB spot open, and Morgan Schneiderlin could be leaving which opens a spot at DM.

  6. apw says:

    I was worried this would happen as soon as they signed Bardsley, plus they already have a stockpile of Central Mids and the Stokies love Shawcross and Huth in the middle. Perhaps it’s time to move on, though it sucks because he was getting 90 min week in and week out.

    • Diego's Maradoughnuts says:

      If Cameron cannot keep a spot because of Phil Bardsley, he has only himself to blame and should maybe quite soccer and become a cook or a spot-welder. Very mediocre player, Bardsley, who isn’t getting any younger and was recently left on the curb by Sunderland.

  7. Brain Guy says:

    “After spending the last two seasons at right back for Stoke, manager Mark Hughes brought in new competition . . .”

    No wonder the team struggled.

    • GW says:

      Except Stoke did not struggle. They finished 9th under Hughes. The season before they finished 13th under Pulis.

      In fact it was the best they have done in the Premiership.

  8. MLS_Soccer_Talker says:

    Schalke….wow.. give it a shot.

  9. slowleftarm says:

    Other than Schalke, none of these clubs look like upgrades from a soccer perspective and I doubt they would pay more money. Schalke is a definite step up though with Champions League football etc.

    • Alex H says:

      Additionally, when you combine GC’s versatility with the added games from a CL schedule there will be plenty of opportunities for GC to hit the field and prove himself.

      • Francois says:

        Agreed, and I think he is an upgrade from Matip, although Matip has much more potential and is younger.

    • whoop-whoop says:

      True, but… big picture… just as a player moving to a “bigger club” isn’t always a good career choice, a move that isn’t an upgrade in overall team quality can well be an upgrade in opportunity and good for a player’s career. If he can get himself to an EPL/Bundesliga team where he can realistically compete for a starting role at CB, it could be a pretty decent move.

      • Alex H says:

        At 29 he has nothing to lose. The future is now. If he wants to be a part of the USMNT at 31 for Copa America or WC at 33 then he better be playing at a top club to prove that he still has it.

        • whoop-whoop says:

          What has he to lose? Playing time. Certainly it is desirable to move to a bigger club, but not at all costs or in all circumstances. It’s important to take a realistic look at the coaching philosophy vs your own assets and competition at your desired position. I don’t see that playing well and regularly at a mid table EPL/ Bundesliga club in no way limits a player’s chances at making USMNT. Pretty sure at the moment, in light of his competition, that it would be seen as a huge asset.

          • Diego's Maradoughnuts says:

            +1. Sometimes I hate this site because you know exactly what people are going to say and it’s cheap logic. It’s like taking some vapid girl on a date… everybody scanned the menu and ordered the most expensive thing, Only live once right?!? Ridiculous.

            Geoff Cameron does not “need” to move anywhere to keep his spot. He is the only guy on the back line getting regular minutes in a first tier European league. THIS IS HARD! AMERICAN PLAYERS FAIL TO DO THIS REGULARLY! MICHAEL BRADLEY AT VILLA RING A BELL TO ANYBODY AT ALL?!?

            Schalke are in the CL and as such they need a deep squad. Cameron is ideal because he can cover many positions… but he doesn’t look likely to be first choice at any one of them. And Schalke are garbage in the CL anyway. One of those teams like Olympiacos who is just fodder for a decent team once they encounter them. Remember their “semi final” team?…. Comedy fail. Could’ve lost by 15 goals.

            I hate this predictable rubbish. A guy from a middle market team locks down a starting spot at third base… and then the Yankees made an offer so he can be a pinch hitter / spot starter? Let’s jump all over it! Start spreading the disappointment!

  10. That_Guy says:

    This is good for Cameron, who can now find a place where he can play DM or CB. The USA is going to be short in CDM for 2018 (surprisingly) and it could be a place for him to stay in the national team picture. CB looks more crowded, but I think its fair to say Yedlin, Johnson, and Chandler with pressure from Ream, Lichaj, Castillo, Garza, and Farrell will be the ones in the outside back pool. CB or DM would be Cameron’s best position moving foward from a USMNT perspective and now with people interested he can go to the place that would play im there.

    • Josh D says:

      Not sure we’ll be short. We’ll still have Jones (though older), Williams, and Bradley. Plus the younger guys like Kitchen, Trapp, and Powers as young central midfielders who can play further back.

      • That_Guy says:

        I thought Powers was an CAM. Jones at 36? Kitchen has stalled. Williams, Bradley, and Trapp are the 3 I can think of, with maybe Edu making a resurgence. 3 CDM arent a lot. But I am sure there are a lot of guys in the pipeline I dont know about. I just feel there are more RB and LB in the team for 2018 then there will be CDM.

        • Rich D says:

          Kitchen has stalled?!? I guess you haven’t watched DC United during the last month and a half.

        • bryan says:

          like Rich said, Kitchen is having his best season to date. also, Caleb Stanko just signed with Freiburg of the Bundesliga and should be in the conversation.

      • slowleftarm says:

        If we’re still playing Jones in 2018, we’re in big trouble.

      • bryan says:

        yup, Stanko and Mikey Lopez too.

    • GW says:

      The USMNT will never be short of candidates for holding midfielder.

      When the incumbent moves on you already have Danny Williams, Edu, Tim Ream, Perry Kitchen, Mikey, etc., etc..

  11. Bac says:

    I’m glad he getting this kind of attention, regardless of where he ends up.
    -He drastically improved last year at Stoke (despite some critics here who don’t seem to acknowledge this)
    -He was named to the FIFA best 11 twice at the World Cup – vs Ghana and Belgium (I know-He coulda been worst 11 vs Portugal)
    -You don’t get interest from 9 different teams in 2 different top flight leagues unless you’re doing something right
    -Looks like he’s overcome any “anti-American bias” to be getting plenty of attention
    -Its great when any of our boys gets some props overseas
    -He busted on Lalas..and right or wrong…anyone that does that is okee dokee in my book!!!

    • Ali Dia says:

      All good points. I think the attenton speaks for itself– so what if the hot chicks aren’t ready to photographed with an American defender yet? Their loss. The fat chicks are tripping over themselves and throwing elbows for some Geoff Cameron. He’ll have a place to stay in the EPL for yeas to come

  12. Jack says:

    If Cameron wants to move to center mid, Sunderland isn’t the worst move. They could certainly use him there.

    • Dirk McQuigley says:

      The Black Cats might be a good fit. He can play at least three positions and if they use him as a CDM he can hit over the top 50 yard balls right to Jozy.

  13. Alexandria says:

    Phil Bardsley is competition? That guy is terrible. What a joke Geoff isnt going to move on for fear of loosing his place to Bardsley he has to be angling for preferred playing position, which if I was Hughes I’d sell him now. Next year will just be the same conversation.

    • Gary Page says:

      My thoughts also. Bardsley isn’t as good as Cameron, IMHO. Also, Huth is getting pretty old; Cameron may be ready to replace him in the middle. Cameron played practically every minute for Stoke and did well. I don’t see any reason for him to move.

  14. Louis Z says:

    I’m curious why he is getting interest now, is not like he had a good WC. It must be because of what he did during the season, unless, this is just a ploy by his agent to get him to play more centrally.

    • Tim Riggins says:

      You’re crazy if you think he didn’t have an amazing cup. One bad game (and it wasn’t even bad, just a high-profile mistake) and you try to claim he didn’t have a good WC. Utter garbage comment.

      • John says:

        Amazing? Yikes

        Only Jones, Johnson and Howard had amazing tournaments.

        Everybody else had good and bad games.

    • H-Town says:

      Nine top tier league football managers and clubs disagree with you. I’ll go with their opinion.

    • Louis Z says:

      Let me see…
      He allowed the back heel pass to a streaking forward for the tie score vs Ghana.
      He committed an AYSO clearing in the first minute of the Portugal game.
      He committed another mistake in front of the goal on a bad clear that a Portugal forward failed to capitalize. He allowed to be beat on a final play that cost us a win.
      He didn’t play in the Germany game.
      Had a decent Belgium game, nothing amazing.

      Yep, he had an Amazing WC making critical errors 2 out of the 3 games he played. You should coach or at the very least be a professional scout.

      • petro4ever says:

        Not a great way to end your post given that this article is about how a whole bunch of coaches and professional scouts want him on their teams.

        In the Ghana game, our backline was under constant pressure for at least 75 solid minutes, if not 85, due to Jozy’s injury and a massive under-performance offensively by our midfield. A goal was bound to leak in eventually given how much we were conceding possession. For the first 85 minutes of the match, Cameron was a big part of us keeping that 1-0 lead.

        No argument that the muffed clearance against Portugal was pretty awful. The last play was a team breakdown, however, and I’m not sure how much of that to put on Cameron as opposed to Bradley for making the initial turnover, which led our entire backline scrambling back when all of them anticipated just helping the midfield kill the clock (even if you argue the backline should have been better prepared for a turnover, it’s probably more reasonable to spread blame over all 5 players who were back there at that point in the game).

        Against Belgium each member of the backline — including Cameron — made some important individual plays. Much like the Ghana game, we just didn’t do much offensively and ended up absorbing a ton of pressure, which made the goals we eventually allowed inevitable.

        I wouldn’t say Cameron had an “amazing” tournament, but he was, overall, one of our better players. He made some individual mistakes, but if you track pretty much any player through an entire match, you can create a list of individual mistakes. I think when you look at his play overall and combine it with what managers have seen week-in week-out in BPL, it makes sense that he’d be in demand.

        • Louis Z says:

          Cameron is a quality player, what I’m arguing is the interest in him based on his WC performance. If the inquiry of other coaches are true is because his play in the premiership not because of his WC.

          And true, others made errors but his was of greater magnitude.

          • petro4ever says:

            Well, I’m not really sure it’s true that his errors were of greater magnitude. What about Bradley turning the ball over at the end of the Portugal game, for example, or Howard not quite keeping his balance on the Ghana goal in the first game? Each led to goals at consequential moments. You could go down our roster and find plenty of errors by players who played well, including errors that led to goals (Besler in the run-up to the first Belgium goal would be another example).

            The larger point is that when scouts (in any sport, really) evaluate players, they don’t just look at the errors and count them up without regard for the context in which they happened. No player would survive that kind of evaluation. They look at all of a player’s good and bad moments, as well as the circumstances surrounding them. In Cameron’s case, he started 3 of 4 games for a team that was playing 2nd and 3rd string strikers and who couldn’t keep possession due to problems in the midfield. As a result, the backline took a shelling and it was inevitable that it would let in goals. He did his part in limiting the damage, however, playing well against a Ghana team that was a tough out and holding his own against a dangerous Belgian team as well. His most glaring error was the shank clearance against Portugal, but when you look at his full body of work over the tournament, his positives outweighed his negatives.

            • GW says:

              p4ever,

              For all anyone knows,the WC may have had little to do with the interest in Cameron.

              After all at best he played a little above average.

              The EPL teams were all already aware of him. I would not think a couple of games in Brazil would outweigh what he did in two seasons with Stoke.

              My guess would be that the signing of Bardsley indicated the possible availability of Cameron.

  15. Joe A says:

    After giving it some thought. A move to Schalke might be worth it.

  16. Bertram says:

    If Cameron moves to Schalke or Frankfurt it would most likely be as a right back. At the current time Frankfurt has only Chandler at right back and the coach might be worried that he will have another bad season like he did last year at Nurnberg. Chandler was much better at the World Cup. Did a world class job of warming a huge spot of real estate on the bench. Would be great to see Cameron win the starting right back spot at Frankfurt from Chandler and then listen to Klinsmann rationalize why Cameron should not be playing right back for the USMNT.

    • slowleftarm says:

      To be fair, Chandler riding the pine for the USMNT was actually a huge improvement for him because at least he managed to show up.

    • GW says:

      Bertram,

      If you were you are still wondering why JK did not play Cameron at right back, and probably never will except in emergencies or as part of a three man back line, then you did not watch the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.

      There should be replays on you tube.

  17. bryan says:

    was not expecting this but that’s great if he can find a good move. and Stoke invested £2M and his current market value is £4.5M. so a nice ROI.

  18. Shawn says:

    MLS!

  19. a says:

    he’s a starter at Stoke-midtable PL club

    but at Schalke he’d have loads of competiiton. sure he might make more $$$ but he’d ride the bench more. though he’d have CL games to play and a chance to fight for a title

  20. Anthony says:

    On a side note, look at this video of Robbie Keane defending MLS: link to soccerly.com