Americans Abroad in England 2008/09 Season Recap – Howard, Dempsey, Friedel, Hahnemann, and more
It was a very successful season for several Americans playing abroad in European soccer. Tim Howard was one of the top goalkeepers for Everton, and Clint Dempsey played a major role in Fulham earning a 7th place finish in the Premier League. Oguchi Oneywu played for Standard and won another league title in Belgium, while Zak Whitbread and Millwall nearly were promoted to the English Championship. Other Americans had mixed results as Heath Pearce was demoted to the reserve squad for German Bundesliga 2 side Hansa Rostock, Eddie Johnson received little playing time at Cardiff City, and Freddy Adu hardly played for AS Monaco. Here’s a full recap of the 2008/09 season for Americans Abroad in the top European soccer leagues.
Tim Howard (GK) – Everton – English Premier League – Howard had a great season for Everton earning 17 clean sheets in the Premier League and playing all 38 matches. He was arguably a top 5 goalkeeper in the league and continues to be the #1 choice for the US National team. A busy international schedule for Howard should keep him in good form for next fall’s start of the Premier League. Everton has qualified for the Europa League as well.
|Everton||English Carling Cup||1||0||5||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Everton||English FA Cup||7||0||27||5||1||1||0||0||0||0|
Clint Dempsey (MF) – Fulham – English Premier League – Dempsey played in almost all the games for Fulham in the Premier League as they had a terrific season, finishing 7th and qualifying for next season’s Europa League. He had 7 goals in the Premier League and was one of the solid contributors at Left Midfield. With Fulham qualifying for European soccer, he will be likely to stay with the club but could attract offers from other clubs.
|Fulham||English Carling Cup||1||0||0||0||2||0||1||1||1||0|
|Fulham||English FA Cup||4||1||1||1||19||14||6||8||0||0|
Brad Friedel (GK) – Aston Villa – English Premier League – Friedel had a solid performance as the Villa keeper and played all of the EPL games this season. He had 13 clean sheets and has arguably had the best career of any American in the EPL. Friedel could follow Kasey Keller and finish his career in MLS in a year or two but it definitely still good enough to remain in the Premier League.
|Aston Villa||UEFA Cup||3||0||3||2||2||2||0||0||0||0|
|Aston Villa||English Carling Cup||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Aston Villa||English FA Cup||3||0||8||2||1||1||0||1||0||0|
|Aston Villa||Premier League||38||0||124||0||0||0||2||9||1||1|
Brad Guzan (GK) – Aston Villa – English Premier League – Guzan was the back-up to Friedel and received little playing time this season. Most of his starts were in the UEFA Cup and he only played in the Premier League in a game where Friedel earned a red card. He’s only 24 and appears to be in-line to take over the starting goalkeeper position when Friedel leaves Villa.
|Aston Villa||UEFA Cup||5||0||28||2||2||3||0||0||1||0|
|Aston Villa||English Carling Cup||1||0||4||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Aston Villa||English FA Cup||1||0||4||2||1||1||0||0||0||0|
|Aston Villa||Premier League||0||1||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
Jonathan Spector (D) – West Ham United – English Premier League – Spector was often injured and only played 9 games in the Premier League for West Ham. At age 23, he still has plenty of time to find his form and should get some significant time with the international team this summer.
|West Ham United||Premier League||4||5||0||1||0||0||6||7||1||0|
Marcus Hahnemann (GK) – Reading – English Championship – Hahnemann started most of the season for Reading but they were unable to get promotion back to the Premier League. He had a solid season but the club struggled to get one of the automatic spots. Hahnemann has yet to sign with a new club but should be draw interest from several English clubs.
|Reading||English Carling Cup||1||0||4||0||0||0||0||1||0||0|
|Reading||English League Championship||34||0||207||17||10||12||1||6||0||0|
Jay DeMerit (D) – Watford – English Championship – DeMerit was captain for Watford and played most of the season as a centerback. He had a few injuries but helped Watford avoid relegation with a finish in the middle of the table. Unfortunately, Watford conceded 72 goals and never had any chance at promotion this season.
|Watford||English Carling Cup||3||0||0||0||0||0||3||1||0||0|
|Watford||English FA Cup||3||0||1||0||0||0||2||2||0||0|
|Watford||English League Championship||31||1||0||0||5||1||22||37||3||0|
Eddie Johnson (ST) – Cardiff City – English Championship – EJ was at Cardiff this season on a loan from Fulham and only received 5 starts all year. He struggled to get much playing time and had 2 goals and 4 assists. It is not known if Johnson will have his loan extended at Cardiff or return to Fulham. However with Fulham qualifying for the Europa League they will need more depth and could have Johnson back for the 2009/10 season.
|Cardiff City||English Carling Cup||2||0||0||0||1||1||2||3||0||0|
|Cardiff City||English FA Cup||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Cardiff City||English League Championship||5||25||2||4||17||7||10||24||1||0|
Jemal Johnson – Milton Keynes Dons – English League One – It was an up and down season for Johnson with the MK Dons. He started the season off strong and ended with 5 goals and 10 assists, but fell out of the starting lineup towards the end of the season. The MK Dons failed to win promotion and Johnson was not included in the roster for most of the last month. He has been released by MK Dons and it is not yet known where he will sign.
|Milton Keynes Dons||Johnstone’s Paint Trophy||1||0||0||0||1||1||0||3||0||0|
|Milton Keynes Dons||English Carling Cup||2||0||0||0||3||1||0||1||0||0|
|Milton Keynes Dons||English FA Cup||1||0||1||0||1||1||0||0||0||0|
|Milton Keynes Dons||English League One||20||14||5||10||32||21||22||24||3||0|
Mike Grella (ST) – Leeds United – English League One – Grella transfered to Leeds in the winter break and received playing time as a late substitute in most games. He never started but should get more playing time next year as he adjusts to English soccer.
|Leeds United||English League One||0||12||0||0||3||3||4||1||0||0|
Zak Whitbread (D) – Millwall – English League One – Millwall advanced to the final of the promotion play-offs but the club lost to remain in League One for next season. Whitbread was a crucial part of the defense and could get a call-up to the National Team with a busy internation schedule this summer.
|Millwall||Johnstone’s Paint Trophy||1||0||0||0||1||0||3||3||0||0|
|Millwall||English Carling Cup||1||0||0||0||2||1||1||1||0||0|
|Millwall||English FA Cup||1||0||1||0||0||0||3||0||0||0|
|Millwall||English League One||37||4||0||1||13||4||65||35||9||0|