It has come to light in the last day that Everton and U.S. goalkeeper Tim Howard will not be available for the friendly with the Philadelphia Union. Accoding to the Union, they were only informed of this fact a few days ago after previous representations to the contrary. To be blunt, Everton probably has minimal marketing value in the U.S. without Howard. The Union claim that they would have pursued other opportunities had they known of Howard’s absence.
Everton say that Howard is being rested after having played in the Gold Cup for the U.S. this summer. The team is well within its rights to rest its player, but they need to be upfront about their intentions. If Everton made representations that Howard would be available for the Union game, they now need a better excuse than he’s being rested. It’s a friendly. He can’t stand in goal for twenty minutes before being substituted? This scenario reminds me of Valencia backing out on their tour dates last year. Do European teams think they can get over on MLS? If so, they’ll only get away with it once.
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