Allsvenskan Notebook Feb. 1
Traffic snarls American’s road to Djurgården. | Dis and dat... | Edman rips HIF a new one.
Traffic snarls American’s road to Djurgården
Djurgården’s efforts to sign U.S. Under-20 international Gale Agbossoumonde hit a major snag when the Yank’s agents of sorts, Miami-based sports marketing company Traffic, set the pricetag a bit too high for the Stockholm club.
Traffic Sports USA is the American arm of Traffic Sports Management, a Brazilian company. It calls itself a sports marketing agency, but it also dabbles in the third-party ownership of players that is becoming more prevalent in South America. As was famously the case with Argentina striker Carlos Tevez, investment groups such as Traffic buy the rights to the player, pay him a salary and rent him out to the highest-bidding club until they can sell him at a profit. Traffic owns the rights of 70 mostly Brazilian players it has scattered around the world.
It also owns Agbossoumonde.
After turning down offers to play for Atletico Madrid and Sevilla in Spain, Agbossoumonde, whom his American teammates call “Boss,” was ready to sign with MLS. However, the Togo-born central defender balked when the offers came in too low, he said. “When the MLS offered me the contract, I was like, 'Come on, are you really serious,” he said.
Traffic once more peddled him to European clubs with Djurgården his latest suitor. The American reportedly wants to stay in Stockholm, but Traffic is seeking a six-figure deal.
“He wants to come here and he wants to play for Djurgården,” said DIF general manager Stefan Alven. “The problem is the Brazilian company (Traffic) owns his rights and wants way too much. Maybe we can get him on loan but we haven’t had any answers to our questions.”
Agbossoumonde continues to train with DIF and is with the team at the Copa del Sol in Spain.
Dis and dat
Elfsborg and Kalmar engaged in war of words over David Elm’s signing with the Borås club. Kalmar general manager Jonny Petersson told Web site fotbolldirekt.se he thought Elfsborg overpaid for the former Kalmar and Fulham midfielder.
“He’s just not worth the money they paid,” Petersson said. “Fulham saw the chance to get rid of player it didn’t want and make some money.”
The Kalmar GM claimed Elfsborg paid 12 million crowns for Elm, more than six times what Kalmar got for selling him to Fulham.
“Had we brought David back, we would have paid out much more than we originally got, and Kalmar doesn’t do things like that,” Petersson said.
Elfsborg chairman Bo Johansson, however, denied the Borås club paid anything close to 12 million kronor ($2 million).
“It’s just not true,” said Johansson. “We paid Fulham 2.7 million kronor ($515,000) plus taxes for David Elm, nothing more.”
Johansson said he thinks Petersson was simply “spouting sour apples” at losing the bidding war for Elm.
“When it came down to it, David saw that Elfsborg is the better team and the better club and the better place to play,” Johansson said.
Elm’s deal is full of incentives, including a clause if he performs extremely well – leads the Allsvenskan in scoring, for example – Fulham would help pay his salary.
>b>Edman rips HIF a new one
Helsingborg defender and captain-in-waiting Erik Edman ripped into his team Jan. 28, calling his fellow players “wimps” and saying they needed to take training and playing seriously or “we will end up in the qualification spots” at the bottom of the league.
Edman spared no one from his tirade.
“The players are here to evolve and improve but that’s not how it is here at the moment,” he said. “It is time for the young players to prove themselves and they have to learn that just having talent isn’t enough. Guys like May Mahlangu and Simon Thern have to step up and they’re not.”
Edman was especially critical of his fellow defenders, saying no one has stepped up to replace now-departed Markus Lantz and Joel Ekstrand.
“That has not happened,” said the left defender. “Above all, the national team players Alexander Gerndt, Rasmus Jonsson, Marcus Nilsson and Pär Hansson who must step up even more.”
Edman didn’t spare himself from his critique, saying the veteran players, “including myself and also my friends Christoffer Andersson, Mattias Lindström and Erik Wahlstedt and others. We are too wimpy. We must, as veterans, provide a higher standard image and raise the bar.”
Although tirades such as Edman’s are common in American sports, they are almost unheard of in Sweden. Plus, Edman made his comments to Helsingborg Dagbladet rather than behind closed doors, a most –un-Swedish thing.
“I am really confused and hurt by what he said,” said Helsingborg manager Conny Karlsson, who also said he was “disappointed” by Edman’s actions.