Sunday, July 6, 2008

Borgetti over Henry

I didn't link to it when it was published Friday but I wrote this story for SI.com about the need for a Latin superstar to join MLS. Yes, there are many who would die to have Thierry Henry a part of MLS, but I argue that it would be better to have Jared Borgetti and/or Adolfo "Bofo" Bautista to join the league instead.

And of course I got some, uh, fan mail.

Only a moron would rather see Borgetti or Bautista in the MLS over Henry. The gulf in class between Henry and those other two slobs is beyond measure. And the only Mexican player who has proven to be a draw for Americans of Mexican heritage is Blanco and neither Borgetti or Bautista is anywhere near as charismatic or loved as him. I think both would be a waste of money.

So I guess I'm a moron. Borgetti and Bofo, who at this point are not close to joining MLS, would make great additions to the league. Borgetti would score plenty of goals while Bofo would be a poor man's Cuauhtemoc Blanco, with the ability to greatly influence whatever team he'd join and charisma to boot.

And really, it seems that Latin players are the way to go. Save for David Beckham, all the DPs who have been brought in have been Hispanic. Claudio Reyna I suppose would be a bit of an exception as well because he's more well known for his US national team connections.

13 comments:

Jason said...

I politely disagree.





And you're not a moron.

starinyourfire said...

i would think its a hard thing to gauge with the age demographic these days, borgetti and bofo would be great additions in terms of play for attendence though i think you would have to look at a younger mexican internationals like memo ochoa, carlos vela, gio and andres guardado(sp?)

dallas attendence rates don't seem to be much bigger with the addition of dulio davino, the rumor of bofo going to dallas as their dp would be interesting because now you're trying to bring together chivas and america fans watching their former players.

if ochoa would join chivas, san jose, galaxy, chicago, dallas, houston, and new york. i would like to believe there would be more of an interest because he's a young player who still has to prove himself because he's in the early stages of his career unlike a player like borgetti and bofo who have already done so much and it won't be so long until they call it quits.

Rudy said...

I vote for all 3 coming to MLS. Though I tend to think that Henry would be better for the league in terms of raising it's profile. If Henry was in New York I'm sure his effect would be similar to Beckham's. I think Bofo and Borgetti would provide a boost of their own to any team, just not on the same level.

starinyourfire said...

oh, regardless of who comes in from europe or latin america it won't make everyone happy or have the pull that we would like it to have. with the way the league is structured with a salary cap, people will continue to gripe and what not.


just throwing this out there because i would like to see it happen, i want memo ochoa on the galaxy as our starting goal keeper but 1. don't have the cap space for the move 2. this only happens in dreams and fifa video games. haha

papa bear said...

yeah...no.

Henry would be a better signing by several orders of greatness largely because there are non-diehard soccer fans who know who he is. (sure some just know him as "the Gillette guy who's friends with Tiger" but it's more than Borgetti or Bautista)

Also, there have been other Mexican 'superstars' who've managed to move the needle about as much as me signing would. Blanco really was a special case.

I do agree though that the future of the league will be siging YOUNGER talent from Latin American countries. That seems pretty obvious given the amount of attention already being paid to that part of the world.

drew_brown said...

Bofo is a better bet than Borgetti to draw at the gate. But neither would have the draw that Henry would.

I'd be willing to bet that Henry would draw more fans to ChivasUSA games than either star you mentioned.

It would be good for the league to get the mentioned players for the sake of 'level of play', but not if they're more expensive than a Guillermo Schelletto.

Matt L said...

LB,

I agree with you on most things, but this is not one of them. Henry would be by far a better signing for the league. However, I agree most with the person who wrote they would take them all.

--Matt L

delfin1 said...

Agree that Bofo/Borgetti would make solid DP's in MLS. But am with Jason, would have to respectfully disagree that they would make better DP's than Henry, if only based on watching the skills he displayed and electricity he created up close a couple of weeks ago. It was very much magical to see how many people Titi could draw for a late afternoon midweek kickabout. Productiviy wise, leading Barca in scoring on an off year speaks for itself. But back to the mass appeal point, he magnetically attracts fan bases across cultural lines, and in NY, that quality is absolutely necessary if you want to maximize your DP slot. Perhaps there is an argument to be made when which markets they'd be DP's in is specified.

Anonymous said...

i think they've tried bringing the older mexican superstar to the league with no avail. hernandez and hermosillo played descent but it didn't do much for the league and davino has drawn nothing extra for dallas. i believe bringing henry would be better for the league because he is a world star and even hispanics here know who he is.

A.Ruiz said...

I think Bofo for Chivas USA would be a good fit. He's definitely easy to hate, the first time I saw him my thought was "Who's the douchebag with the bleached hair and gloves in Mexico?".
But you know, hey played well vs the USA this Feb and he's proven his quality in the Mexican League and Copa Libertadores.

Henry would be bigger than all of them, save Ronaldhino. I don't understand how people make the argument that Ronnie would not be as big as Beckham.
Even when I wasn't so hugely into the sport except for the WC....around 2005. I knew who he was.

Lawrence said...

I read your article, and I think you make an interesting point, but it should go a little further.

Henry would only work (or at least with a sizable punch) in NYC.

Borgetti and Bofo would work great in a Houston, or Dallas. (I imagine)

I actually think Columbus needs a Mexican star. There are a ton of legal/illegal immigrants in Columbus and around. I used to live there (now in NYC though)

The other thing about Henry, is that MLS and followers aren't chasing Henry down. Henry is in question because HE'S brought it up. So thats a reason to see the two as different.

Henry would pack RB Park though, I guarantee you at lest .5 million people in the metro area can tell you who Henry is easy.

Joseph D'Hippolito said...

l.b., there are two problems with your suggestion. First, Henry is a far better player than Borgetti, who's one-dimentional beyond belief (can he do anything except head the ball?). Second, if Borgetti didn't make it at Bolton Wanderers (for whatever reason), why do you think he would make it in the U.S.? Of course, English culture is a lot different than the culture of an American city with lots of Latin Americans, so Borgetti would likely feel more at home. Even so, few older Mexican players (except Rafael Marquez and Blanco) wear well overseas.

Regarding Bautista, I get the feeling that he's a pain in the behind for his own teams in Mexico to deal with. Didn't Vergara dump him over a salary dispute? Anyway, if he is a pain, he's not likely to attract much interest from Mexican teams, let alone MLS.

Now, regarding younger Mexican internationals -- ain't no way they're coming here. No self-respecting Mexican club would let such players (like Ochoa) go in the first place unless they received nice transfer fees -- and MLS can't compete w/the kind of transfer fees that Guardado and the like can bring.

The fundamental problem with your critique, l.b., is that it doesn't address transfer fees. How much did MLS pay for Beckham and Blanco, if anything? If I'm not mistaken (and I might be), AEG didn't have to pay Real Madrid a thing for Beckham! That's one reason why Real was so infuriated at the deal.

Actually, there's one Mexican who might be a good pickup for an MLS team: Osvaldo Sanchez, if he's interested. He's still reliable and he's a "name" player. In fact, if Guzan goes overseas, Chivas USA would be stupid not to pick him up, if they have the cap space.

argaen said...

Why does it have to be one or the other for any of these players? The MLS needs more talent period. Any DP thats capable of playing, unlike Reyna, are helping to raise the leagues profile. The more the merrier.