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Whitecaps Striker Haber on Trial With West Brom


cyris2k

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VANCOUVER Whitecaps striker Marcus Haber has today joined Albion for a four-day training spell.

The 20-year-old has just completed a highly-successful first season in Canada, scoring eight goals and recording four assists during the United Soccer Leagues First Division campaign.

It led to the pacey, 6ft 3in forward being named the USL-1 Rookie of the Year as well as the Whitecaps Newcomer of the Year and Fan Favourite.

Prior to joining the Caps, Haber spent two seasons with the Under-19 and reserve teams of Dutch Eredivisie club FC Groningen.

Born in Vancouver, he has also represented Canada at Under-17 and Under-20 levels and was a member of the Under-23 squad involved in qualifying for the Beijing Olympics in March 2008.

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Second place team in the Championship. Cool. As much as I'd love to see him in a Caps uniform it would be great to see how far he could go. Given his size, speed and touch on the ball he is a natural for the EPL. If he catches on with West Brom I hope they get promoted!

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^I'm happy for Haber and hope that he is offered a contract but I think its a bit of a leap of faith to suggest that the size, speed and touch that he exhibited in USL play will equate to an EPL career. lets walk before we run. Let's not forget he spent a year bouncing around europe trialing but not getting contracts from lesser clubs than WBA.

I think he is most definitely a better player for having gone through 1 year in Vancouver. he really showed me something toward the end of the year but I'm not prepared to believe that he's suddenly become an EPL caliber player. I hope you're right and I'm wrong though.

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quote:Originally posted by SthMelbRed

^whatever happens for him in Europe, Haber must know that he has the safety net of being a dominant striker at MLS level with his hometown club should he choose to go that way.

It might even be a stretch to translate his USL success to MLS. We can't assume that. If he were to play in MLS, I'm sure he'd have some success but its entirely possible that he could struggle too.

However he does have the safety net of knowing that he is highly valued by his hometown club, who sadly don't have the ability to pay him sufficiently to stay in vancouver and continue to develop. I know my preference would be to see him stay at least one more season and get regular playing time. Europe isn't going anywhere...it's always going to be there.

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quote:Originally posted by VPjr

^I'm happy for Haber and hope that he is offered a contract but I think its a bit of a leap of faith to suggest that the size, speed and touch that he exhibited in USL play will equate to an EPL career. lets walk before we run. Let's not forget he spent a year bouncing around europe trialing but not getting contracts from lesser clubs than WBA.

I think he is most definitely a better player for having gone through 1 year in Vancouver. he really showed me something toward the end of the year but I'm not prepared to believe that he's suddenly become an EPL caliber player. I hope you're right and I'm wrong though.

It is amazing what a year in the first team did for him both confidence and playing smarts. I don't think he is EPL now but if he keeps on the growth and development curve he is on then he will be and sooner than we all think. I think having TT, a former striker, for a coach is helping a lot of the younger players in Vancouver.

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quote:Originally posted by tmcmurph

It is amazing what a year in the first team did for him both confidence and playing smarts. I don't think he is EPL now but if he keeps on the growth and development curve he is on then he will be and sooner than we all think. I think having TT, a former striker, for a coach is helping a lot of the younger players in Vancouver.

I totally agree with your 1st sentence. That is why, when I speak to young players, I urge them not to rush off to Europe until they are ready. They really need good quality training and competition for 1-2 years here at home before making the jump across the pond.

Haber definitely has the physical attributes to be successful in England or Scotland. Let's just see if he can continue to develop. I sure hope so

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quote:Originally posted by VPjr

It might even be a stretch to translate his USL success to MLS. We can't assume that. If he were to play in MLS, I'm sure he'd have some success but its entirely possible that he could struggle too.

However he does have the safety net of knowing that he is highly valued by his hometown club, who sadly don't have the ability to pay him sufficiently to stay in vancouver and continue to develop. I know my preference would be to see him stay at least one more season and get regular playing time. Europe isn't going anywhere...it's always going to be there.

I watched him live twice this year, once in the league and once in the Voyageurs' Cup. I also watched a few games online. What he showed at the USL was very impressive for a 20-year old. We get an MLS 'Game-of-the-week' here on ESPN and I watched a few of those, too. I have no doubt that Marcus Haber could step in and be a good striker in MLS straight away. In a couple of years, he'd be dominant. He's already better than the main striker for MLS Cup winning RSL (the guy with speed to burn, no football brain, and a first touch worse than most house league players--even if he did score a big goal to tie the match on Sunday).

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Haber is my pick for Young Cdn POTY based on his breakout season with the Caps. A trial in England sure can't hurt him. I do agree with all the others that playing time has to be an issue.

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quote:Originally posted by Ed

Haber is my pick for Young Cdn POTY based on his breakout season with the Caps. A trial in England sure can't hurt him. I do agree with all the others that playing time has to be an issue.

I'm very pleased to see him achieve some success in light of what was said about him after the U20 WC in 07.

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Haber offered contract with Albion.

http://communities.canada.com/theprovince/blogs/backofthenet/archive/2009/11/27/haber-offered-a-contract-with-west-brom.aspx

Vancouver Whitecaps forward Marcus Haber has been offered a contract by English League Championship side West Bromwich Albion, The Province has learned. The 20-year-old Vancouverite was the United Soccer Leagues First Division rookie of the year in 2009 with eight goals and four assists in 30 league appearances. After starting his European career with Dutch side FC Groningen, Haber was cut and failed to catch on after trials at Leeds, Gillingham and Hartlepool, returning to Vancouver in February.

Haber was on a four-day trial for Baggies boss Roberto Di Matteo. The Whitecaps have offered Haber a new deal but also have an option on his previous deal, meaning West Brom will have to buy him from the Caps. The Whitecaps, who jump to Major League Soccer in 2011, have said they won't stand in Haber's way if he wants to give Europe another go, but they will want to get a decent transfer fee for such a promising young talent.

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What can I say! This last year was a real breakout for the big guy and as much as I'd love to see him in a Caps uniform I am very happy for him. Must be nice to be part of an organization that doesn't get in the way of a player's dreams.

So the Caps will get some money, more Euro clubs will know about them, more interest will be shown in their players so they will develop more. Hello MLS... do you see how this works? This is how it's done!

I hope he gets some time in each game and stays healthy. Making a team that is in the promotion zone is no small accomplishment.

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Good for him, and best of luck.

Expect the transfer fee will be graduated. Have a floor and a ceiling with a final total being based on number of appearances blah, blah, blah. Could be a pretty tidy sum though. You may be aiming a bit low if Haber gets into the squad quick and performs.

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quote:Originally posted by Bertuzzi44

I wonder what kind of transfer fee the Whitecaps will be looking for?

I will take an absolute stab in the dark and say something in the range of £75,000 - £125,000?

I really have no idea...

This is very good for the Caps. I am ALWAYS happy to see a Canadian player getting sold on. I'd say he's worth at least £100,000, which would be a nice little sum for the Whitecaps and only further confirms that their strategy of giving young players opportunities through the residency and the 1st team is a good one.

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quote:Originally posted by tmcmurph

So the Caps will get some money, more Euro clubs will know about them, more interest will be shown in their players so they will develop more. Hello MLS... do you see how this works? This is how it's done!

Er, considering they've sold a player like Jozy Altidore for $10 million, I'm pretty sure MLS knows how it's done. ;)

Don't get me wrong, I think the Caps are leading the pack when it comes to a total club system in northern North America. But credit where it's due, MLS isn't exactly oblivious to this stuff either.

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^ If anything, MLS can only be "criticized" for hanging too big of a pricetag on too many players, effectively rendering them unsellable (despite what the club or the player thinks they are worth in the transfer market).

I can understand MLS' logic ("we don't want to be a selling league") and I actually think they've got the right idea most of the time because selling a player on the cheap too early when you have them locked up on long term contracts is simply foolish. However, I do think their strategy backfire from time to time. Taylor Twellman being a perfect example of asking for too much and thus not selling the player, stifling the player's ambition and leaving a bad taste in his mouth...and in this case the problem is doubly bad because he's been hurt almost continuously since his desired transfer fell through so the league and his club have gotten nothing from him either.

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quote:Originally posted by Rudi

Er, considering they've sold a player like Jozy Altidore for $10 million, I'm pretty sure MLS knows how it's done. ;)

Don't get me wrong, I think the Caps are leading the pack when it comes to a total club system in northern North America. But credit where it's due, MLS isn't exactly oblivious to this stuff either.

MLS was also able to transfer Mo Edu for quality coin even though he was experiencing a sophomore slump.

I see on the "Germany" thread that Straith scored today, so an excellent weekend for the Caps' academy.

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quote:Originally posted by VPjr

This is very good for the Caps. I am ALWAYS happy to see a Canadian player getting sold on. I'd say he's worth at least £100,000, which would be a nice little sum for the Whitecaps and only further confirms that their strategy of giving young players opportunities through the residency and the 1st team is a good one.

I'd say it's a great piece of business by the 'Caps, signing a promising, local kid, giving him the opportunity to excel at a professional level (which to Marcus' credit, he's grabbed hold of with both hands), and perhaps walked away with a six-figure fee in less than ten months. This has raised Marcus Haber's profile both locally and nationally and has linked his name with the club in a way which keeps the 'Caps in pole position to sign him again at some point in the future when the player feels it's time to return home to settle down. It has also marked down the 'Caps as a club which won't necessarily stand in the way of its players moving on to bigger and better things, which can't hurt its ability to sign other promising players in the future who might be looking for a stepping stone to a career in the big time.

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quote:Originally posted by VPjr

^ If anything, MLS can only be "criticized" for hanging too big of a pricetag on too many players, effectively rendering them unsellable (despite what the club or the player thinks they are worth in the transfer market).

I can understand MLS' logic ("we don't want to be a selling league") and I actually think they've got the right idea most of the time because selling a player on the cheap too early when you have them locked up on long term contracts is simply foolish. However, I do think their strategy backfire from time to time. Taylor Twellman being a perfect example of asking for too much and thus not selling the player, stifling the player's ambition and leaving a bad taste in his mouth...and in this case the problem is doubly bad because he's been hurt almost continuously since his desired transfer fell through so the league and his club have gotten nothing from him either.

I believe the Twellman case (as well as Shalrie Joseph, who had agreed to a $4 million transfer to Celtic a couple of years back) were a case of New England vetoing the deal, rather than MLS holding him back.

I also believe Clint Dempsey had to wait until he was on a free transfer before heading to Fulham, so New England have proven themselves extremely difficult in allowing their stars to move on.

It varies from team to team, really. Kenny Cooper had his original deal to Cardiff thwarted by FC Dallas because they felt it was a lowball offer. Dallas okayed Cooper's eventual move to 1860 Munich about a year later. They also okayed Eddie Johnson's move to Fulham on the first attempt.

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quote:Originally posted by SthMelbRed

MLS hasn't developed many of the players that they've sold on, though, have they? Mo Edu was part of MLS for a bit over a year and played about forty games in the league. They've pocketed a big fee, though.

That was sort of what I was getting at. MLS depends almost solely on NCAA to develop players. They are starting to change but it will be a while before they get it right. They (team or MLS) get in the way of players chasing their dreams. I can understand it from a business standpoint but don't like it.

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