Johnson to Fulham all but done (Wizards wheeling and dealing)


Eddie Johnson’s pending transfer move to English club Fulham is "99 percent done" a source told SBI on Tuesday. The details of the transfer fee were not made available but Johnson is expected to join fellow Americans Clint Dempsey, Carlos Bocanegra, Brian McBride and Kasey Keller on the struggling English club as early as this weekend.

Johnson and his agent, Richard Motzkin, are in London finalizing the deal that is expected to net Major League Soccer close to $6 million in transfer fees, which would easily shatter the previous record for an MLS transfer fee, held by Clint Dempsey.

The Wizards have wasted no time preparing for Johnson’s departure. The Kansas City star is reporting that the Wizards have acquired the No. 1 overall pick in the upcoming MLS Draft for veteran defender Nick Garcia. Kansas City could used the No. 1 overall pick on highly-rated forward Patrick Nyarko, who could be called on to step in to Johnson’s starting role.

That wasn’t the only deal the Wizards completed on Tuesday. According to league sources, Kansas City is set to ship defender Jose Burciaga to the Colorado Rapids for an undisclosed draft pick.

So what do you think about these developments? Do you think Johnson is making a mistake by moving to Fulham. Do you think San Jose should have gotten more for the top pick in the draft? Are you surprised to see Jose Burciaga traded? Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in Americans Abroad, European Soccer, MLS- Colorado Rapids, MLS- San Jose Earthquakes, MLS- Sporting Kansas City, U.S. Men's National Team. Bookmark the permalink.

72 Responses to Johnson to Fulham all but done (Wizards wheeling and dealing)

  1. CPTKevin says:

    unfortunately for American soccer fans I think Fulham will be relegated if they don’t pull a “West Ham”. I’m not sure Johnson is the man that Carlos Tevez was last year who bascially rescued West Ham from relegation on the last day of the season. Time will tell. Best of luck to EJ, who knows, I might even add him to my fantasy team?!

  2. Tony in Quakeland says:

    Nick Garcia? I’m going to puke.

  3. Daniel says:

    You have to think the owner of Fulham just likes the “2 for 1” feel of the pound to the dollar. It’s nice the Americans have been able to take advantage of it as well.

    It’s high time he did it. Now we are finally going to see what Johnson is made of. Let’s hope he does well in the new atmosphere.

    I’m assuming he has enough starts for the US Nats to avoid any work permit issues such as what happened to Convey.

  4. Kyle says:

    This is going to leave KC pretty empty on goal scoring capabilities. They were already having problems last year. They seemed to have a really good offense that would fire off shots like an automatic, but like an automatic they had horrible aim and rarely scored. Now without the one perosn who could at least find the back of the net, I think they will struggle unless someone steps up or Nyarko becomes some sort of wonder kid. I am not too surprised with Burciago. After that error in one their last games of the season last year that ended up costing them the game (at a crucial point in time), he seemed to have lost favor and confidence with the coach. Hopefully he can find his form and confidence.

  5. kpugs says:

    USA FC! These past couple of seasons I’ve almost come to regret that I’ve had a favorite team in England for so long. Well, long by American standards I’d imagine. I’ll still continue to pull for Fulham much like I pull for the Jets as long as they’re not playing the Giants.

    The real question is what is going to happen when McBride comes back? Dempsey, McBride, Eddie Money, Kamara, Healy…no room for all those strikers.

  6. kpugs says:

    Good call on discussing the KC side Kyle. I just went back and looked at their roster. Not scary at all from an attacking point of view.

    Marinelli doesn’t really have the legs to be a full time threat. Arnaud/Sealy will have to step up big time if they don’t get a major attacking player out of the draft or transfer.

  7. HLJKL says:

    No one to score goals and half there defense gone. What are the Wizards going to do?

  8. frank says:

    Quakes fan and season ticket holder here….man that’s a terrible move. I
    figured we wouldn’t be that great next season, but holy crapola who’s going to score? Guess were going italian style 1-0.
    LOOOOONG season ,but HAPPY were back…..

  9. Xiphosis says:

    I’d suggest renaming Fulham F.C. to US F.C. but it wouldn’t look as sexy on the insignia.

  10. Sandro says:

    I like the fact that we have more US Players going abroad, but it would be nice if he had gone to another team. Regardless wish EJ the very best in Fulham and hope he can help the team turn around.

  11. jeff says:

    i agree w/ kpugs . . . where do all these strikers fit in w/ the “new” captain america (mcbride) coming back soon?

    best of luck to EJ regardless.

  12. EDB says:

    1) I think SJ should have gotten more for the #1 pick
    2) I think that is alot of money for EJ, but he was able to show in international comp that he could break away.. (just needs to learn to finish)
    3) Does KC have any defenders left?

  13. Tony in Quakeland says:

    Now that I’ve stopped puking…I suspect that McBride will return, see part time duty and leave in the summer. Dempsey may go out on the wing, but I would love to see him stay central but withdrawn.

    As for EJ, English style Route One football will suit his strengths. He’ll score goals. He’s still not a soccer player, however.

  14. NateinSF says:

    I want to hear Ives take on the Feilhaber situation. Do other opportunities exist outside of Israel? I really don’t understand why he would make that move.

    I’m curious to see how this transfer works out for EJ, and how Fulham chose to use him in their attacking setup.

  15. Dominghosa says:

    Not sure about any of these moves. The only good move I see is KC getting rid of Burciaga for their sake and Burciaga getting out of KC for his sake. I think he’ll shine even more after this trade.
    It’ll be tough to ask a rookie to priduce just as much as EJ did for KC. I doubt tthe kid will ever get a hat trick in the coming seen. Getting two hats, as EJ did last season, would be nearly impossible.
    With EJ, Garcia, and Burciaga gone, it’s going to be a very, very long season in KC. Are they also playing for next year’s No. 1pick already? O’Brien White?
    I hope San Jose is also getting something else in return than just Nick Garcia.
    And as for EJ to Fulham, not sure that’s a good move. It’ll be good for him in the sense of transitioning to England with all the other Americans there. But by all accounts and their season-long form, Fulham is going down to the Championship. And I agree with others, I don’t think EJ is Fulham’s Tevez.
    I thought I’d root for Fulham if they grabbed another American. Now, not so much. EJ doesn’t entice me. I’m an Everton fan anyway. But I will pull for Fulham for the sake of the American players, especially Dempsey.
    Oh and kpugs/kev, IN NO WAY will I EVER root for the Jets. It’s like UCLA rooting for USC/SUC. Like God rooting for the devil. Like cows rooting for glue.

  16. Cory says:

    While Fulham needs all the help it can get scoring goals, its efforts have to be more driven towards not conceding goals, a problem which has been the #1 factor in its disappointing season thus far.

    Porous Defense is what has been producing the losses. It’s blind as day to see. Like the above comments have stated, it doesn’t help bringing in another forward when the Whites already have several already.

    Kamara, Healy, Kuqi, McBride…now Johnson. Dempsey has been filling in at the striker position, but he’s best fit playing out wide. If he moves back to winger, then what? You have Bouzza, Seol, Davies, Cook coming back from injury–what’s the best lineup?

    Do you bench Bouzza and put Davies and Duece together? Do you play a 1-5-4 and put Dempsey as an attacking midfielder/withdrawn forward?

    With Johnson, the team just becomes more convoluted.

    Not a big fan of it…as you can see.

  17. EssEff says:

    Tony, I’m with you. Garcia is a thug. Dirty mf. One of my most hated players in MLS. Sigh.

  18. Zungazan says:

    The more I think of it, the more I like this trade. Would be nice if KC would throw in a draft pick as well though.

    Also, I noticed the captain’s armband on his MLS photo. A captain-quality, veteran defender… Not bad at all.

    hey poster frank, how much you want to bet that the Quakes will make the playoffs?

  19. kpugs says:

    Dom…you sound like a Jets fan! Only kidding of course, I know where you’re coming from. 😉

  20. Luis says:

    Two thoughts here.

    First, I like that EJ is going to England but there’s such a logjam of forwards at Fulham. Might EJ lose playing time to Dempsey, or vice versa? It would suck if in order for one American to get on the field, another one has to sit. I suppose that kind of happened already before McBride got hurt, but Dempsey’s quality was enough to force his inclusion in the side.

    My second thought – England will either bolster or kill EJ’s game. If he starts taking people on and regains his confidence, I see him blossoming. If he tries and fails, he’ll become just another pass first, pass second American forward. Still searching for that guy who will take people on and beat them.

  21. Too bad the “Yanks Out” signs at Anfield are ruining a good day for the USA. Obviously two unrelated stories, but with the possibility of Fulham going down and those morons in Hicks and Gillete making a bad situation worse, this may not be the best year for Americans in England.

    I’ve never been sold on EJ but I wish him and Fulham the best of luck.

  22. What do I think?

    You can read my thoughts here:

    link to

    Thanks for the heads up Ives. I hope for him and for Fulham that he can make the transition awfully quick. There’s no time for learning the system. The team needs results NOW!

  23. Dominghosa says:

    I forgot to add, it’s like Toffeemen rooting for ‘pool. NO WAY.

  24. Dannyc58 says:

    Wow. This is nothing like West ham. How dare you haters bring them up!

    It was NOT ONLY Tevez that kept us up, people need to get a grip.

    And Fulham JUST GOT WORSE, not better.

  25. frank says:

    yo, Zungazan i hope your right. Like i said
    i’m just thrilled my quakes are back. But man, it’s gonna be pretty ugly futbol. I didn’t imagine that Nyarko would of scored 20 goals or anything but he sure sounds more exciting that kei kamara. Again i’m just not so sure who(outside mls) will want to come play in buck shaw?! Oh and with “moneyball” strategy the owners are not known for dropping crazy money.(see a’s) . Hey but thanks for betting on the quakes.

  26. Carl says:


    Remember that Dempsey has been playing out of position up front with McBride out. He’s much better suited as a reserved striker/attacking mid or even as a central mid where he can use his creativity to make opportunities.

    And then what’s wrong with having four footballers who can play forward. Surplus is never a bad thing. It’s will let Hodgson go with the hot hand, err… foot.

  27. Amit says:

    Perhaps Derby will loan Eddie Lewis and Benny Feilhaber to Fulham also! All I know is, Fulham can keep Keller forever.

  28. john says:

    I really don’t think Johnson is much of a player and I can’t believe that Fulham is paying this much for him. This speaks volumes of how expensive forwards are and how the US national team players are viewed now in England (particularly at Fulham). Fulham can stay up, but I’m not sure Johnson would help them do it. I’d be very surprised if he did anythign the rest of the season other than to frustrate Fulham fans (and us).

  29. cosmic says:

    I believe that McBride’s returning to MLS in the summer- coming back from that injury at his age…I don’t see it, especially with relegation looking more certain. Ditto Keller.

    Don’t many EPL contracts let players leave if their club is relegated? Dempsey has certainly impressed enough to get serious offers from other clubs- he would get major minutes at almost every EPL club. Boca- not so sure, although he certainly has proven he can play at this level-a change of scenery might benefit his game. EJ would be fine in the Championship and I believe in the end this is his upside to Fulham. He’s not matchfit and and I don’t see him adjusting until it’s too late (this season).

  30. Tony in Quakeland says:

    If the reported transfer fee is correct, all I have to say is….

    Introducing Jozy Altidore, America’s first $20 million man.

  31. Mikemike says:


  32. kpugs says:

    And would you look at that, KC went and traded Nick Garcia for the 1st overall pick in the draft. Alex Nyarko?

  33. kpugs says:

    Carl, I was thinking more from the players’ standpoint than the team’s. As a manager or Fulham fan it’s one of those good dilemmas to have. But I’m not really either. :)

  34. Dominghosa says:

    As for Jozy, yes he’ll garner at least $20 million.
    Off topic, kind of, but I don’t know how Jozy could have upstaged Pato at the U-20 WC. Pato must have been injured or wasn’t feeling right becuase that kdi canplay.
    Me missed some point-blankers in hsi debut against Napoli but the Napoli GK also made some great saves on him.
    Pato eventually scored but that wasn’t what impressed me the most. That kid has serious ball skills. He was able to hold the ball up and dribble around defenders and keep possession.
    I think Jozy has a better, harder, more accurate shot and has more strength than Pato. But Pato gets the nod as a better player right now because of his touch, awareness, and dribbling skills.

  35. kpugs says:

    Dannyc, you’re doing the hating here buddy, as is completely obvious to everyone.

    Tevez literally scored the goal that kept West Ham up on the final day of the season. Trying to do that is like trying to pretend they barely managed to finish 17th in a 20 team league while spending as much as some of the biggest clubs in the Premiership.

  36. Dominghosa says:

    yikes. I need spell checker.

  37. ejs says:

    I think Feilhaber going to Israel would be good. European cups and a league that is probably equal to the Championship, plus PT

  38. Michael says:

    If Fulham get relegated what does that say about American players in Europe/England? I know that Fulham’s problems are not 100% due to the quality of American players, but I wonder what others see when they see all these Americans and their inability to garner points in the BPL. It really disturbs me and I hope it doesn’t hurt the career of our boys, but I don’t see FFC getting out of the cellar this year.

  39. aristotle says:

    Wow! Interesting news.

    Regarding the McBride situation, as someone already said, he has very little time left with Fulham and after such a long layoff at his age he may not have much left to contribute.

    Someone mentioned Fulham’s owner liking the value of the dollar as a possible reason for all of the U.S. purchases, but doesn’t the coach get to pick his players? If that’s the case, as you would expect, then for some reason every new coach at Fulham seems to like the idea of getting U.S. players! I believe this is the third coach in about a year that has continued this strategy? Maybe they just don’t have any money.

    Sadly all of the American players will be going to the Championship League. The only battle I see at the bottom of the Premier is the battle for who will go down with Derby and Fulham. All of the teams above Derby and Fulham have shown quite a bit of fight and more quality. I hope people don’t make a connection between Premier League teams with American players and being relegated! I think we had about thirteen at one point last year and now at the end of this season we will be lucky to have five, and three will be goalkeepers! Hahnemann will probably be on his way out soon too. Oh well. We could have ten or more in the Championship next year!

  40. aristotle says:

    I wasn’t copying anyone’s comments, honest! By the time I was done entering my comments other people were saying the same things!

  41. TK says:

    Quote -If Fulham get relegated what does that say about American players in Europe/England? I know that Fulham’s problems are not 100% due to the quality of American players, but I wonder what others see when they see all these Americans and their inability to garner points in the BPL. It really disturbs me and I hope it doesn’t hurt the career of our boys, but I don’t see FFC getting out of the cellar this year. End Quote

    Funny post. Who gives a flying f what the Englsih think? More will wonder about the incompetent Sanchez and his love for NIrish players who are clearly below ours skillwise. How he put together a joke of a team.

    How Clint D was a revealation for him and he seemed shocked that Demps could play and foprced his way inot his pathetic line ups and choices, and how he wasted all of that transfer money.

    Fans and managers are way above the sort of angst that insecure, needing approval Yanks like yourself generally show.

    Boca is marginall P’ship material. Obvious.

    Demps is their best player, playing out of position on a crap team, playing him out of position. He actually wants to play th eball on the ground and forced his manager to play him evern though he wasn’t one of his boys.

    Bake’s abilities have been forged and are respected and understood.

    Keller. Desperate move. Brought in because of piss poor goalkeeping and injuries. His was well repsected in the EPL and has more than proved himself.

    EJ – IMO CCC material but we will see.

    People who watch the matches and games know this and could care less about your mental issues. Myabe some troll poster will bust chops and you, like many immature Yank followers will pee their pants in worry. God, we are such an immature soccer nation it’s not even funny.

  42. Andy says:

    Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe Jozy Altidore has one year remaining on his contract with MLS. If he plays the entire ’08 season in MLS, he can leave on a free transfer. If someone scoops him up during the summer transfer window, then nobody is paying $20 million for a player with so little time left on his contract.

  43. Tony in Quakeland says:


    I enjoy your posts and agree with 90% on your observations. But, man, Dale Carnegie you’re not.

    Not that you care…;-)

  44. Tony in Quakeland says:


    Talking realtive value here, not contract specifics.

  45. aristotle says:

    Hey TK:

    Why don’t you take your America bashing somewhere else?

    You seem to think you’re an authority, and maybe you are, but who wants to be an authority on ignorance and hate?


  46. Dominghosa says:

    I would agree that the U.S. soccer knowledge is immature by youth and England’s is immature by attitude.

  47. Andy says:

    Ok, so we’re saying that somewhere down the line that Jozy will command that kind of transfer fee

  48. A.S. says:

    I don’t see how EJ’s move to Fulham will be any good for the USMNT. Half the team is going to relegated at the same time!

  49. jig says:

    Wait, what??? What are the rumors about Feilhaber?

  50. Dannyc58 says:


    They finished 15th for starters. And secondly they would have stayed up with a tie on the final day.

    Was Tevez incredible and inspirational during that run? Undeniably no question.

    Were Mark Noble, Robert Green, James Collins and Bobby Zamora a big part of that, of course.

    Only those that watched highlights think it was all Tevez, those of us that watched all 90+ minutes know the truth.

    I’m not an EJ fan, of course–and I am a West Ham fan. So to read someone even jokingly compare the two I found and find comical.

    I want Fulham to stay up, I just don’t see how this signing helps that, personally.

    West Ham was a team that finished 9th the season prior, Fulham finished 16th last year. Its not like their struggles this year are out of nowhere.

  51. EJ, welcome to the Cottage.

    In a year, I’m going to tell all my fellow Fulham supporters “I told you so” just like last year when I heard doubts about Dempsey.


  52. aristotle says:

    Maybe Fulham are building a team they think might help them get back to the Premier League after they are relegated? Sounds silly with so much time left, but when you consider that they are making purchases like EJ who is unlikely to help them now when they need it most, what else can they be doing?

  53. undrafted says:

    Nick Garcia is a 5’10” (generously) centerback with average pace that’s a bit rough in the tackle. He’s good in certain situations, but some teams can expose his weaknesses. Overall he’s at best an average starter, more likely approaching borderline starter status. Playing alongside Conrad, Garcia might actually look better than he is.

    This draft might not have a sure bet impact starter (Maurice Edu)for 2008 that’d be at least average league-wide among starters at his position. But it probably does. This trade is truly mind-boggling.

    Burciaga moving out makes sense since he lost his spot to Harrington.

  54. Dannyc58 says:


    They (Fulham) have a pretty high amount of debt, so I hope thats not their plan.

    I really really hope they stay up, and think that Hodgson(sp?) is the man. I just hope he can get them some height.

  55. AJF says:

    Garcia a thug? That’s ridiculous. Great trade for KC though. Wizards desperately need a high draft choice with no other forwards out there to acquire.

    EJ is a streaky speedster that’s pretty much poison in the locker room. He’ll mess Fulham up. Their problem now.

  56. aristotle says:


    I really hope Fulham stays up too, but to be honest even though there is a lot of time left, I have given up hope. The reason I feel that way is I think even if Fulham improves it will not be enough. What three teams (other than Derby) can you see them finishing in front of? Sunderland, Birmingham, Bolton, and Middlesbrough, and even Wigan seem pretty tough to beat right now as they fight to stay out of the relegation zone. Which two of these teams can you see Fulham beating? I think all of the higher teams are safe.

  57. Bill Mac says:

    Why does it seem like there is a funnel for American players to Fulham. To me, Fulham have always seemed like a “championship” side that were out of their element in the EPL. I hear Craven Cottage is a lovely place but can’t our boys do better. For petes sake Benfica were after Eddie not too log ago. Fulham will be happy with a top 12 finish year in and year out. Rubbish

  58. Dannyc58 says:


    Sunderland are in trouble, even if they get Sidwell.

    I think Wigan, Bolton, Birmi have had spurts due to new managers. I still see one (a spurt) coming for Fulham.

    And I know its hard not to look, but just worry about Fulham, 7 wins and I bet they stay up, maybe 8.

    I see Sunderland going down, then a fight between Fulham/Bolton/Wigan/Birmingham….and honestly Newcastle has some TOUGH upcoming games…I don’t see them going down, but I forsee a scare coming for them.

    Readings defense is so porous, they aren’t a guarantee to stay up either.

  59. Matt says:

    I can’t believe this Garcia for the top pick thing. An average, moderately expensive central defender for the top pick in the draft?

    San Jose needs a forward like Nyarko. Sure they lost Goodsen to Europe but he can be replaced cheaper than this.

    I still don’t buy this happened as reported.

  60. Quakes Got Robbed says:

    I can’t believe this Garcia for the top pick thing. An average, moderately expensive central defender for the top pick in the draft?

    San Jose needs a forward like Nyarko. Sure they lost Goodsen to Europe but he can be replaced cheaper than this.

    I still don’t buy this happened as reported.

    Posted by: Matt | January 15, 2008 at 09:45 PM


    Believe it …. posted on …. nothing other than player for pick

  61. jason says:

    hopefully this makes a professional out of johnson.

    best thing that could happen to fulham for him would be the drop.

    i think garcia is worth the #1 pick, at the end of the day, MLS Cup winning sides are a mix of strong, experienced foreign talent and USMNT player pool players that don’t get callups like Garcia.

    a sound, conservative trade.

  62. Joamiq says:

    Wow, what a blur of activity!

    Garcia is not enough.

    EJ is making a mistake.

    Fulham is making a mistake.

    The Cottagers are going down, and they’re taking our Yanks and their reputations with them. But I’m going to be rooting really hard for them anyway, hoping that Demps and EJ go on a rampage and save the day…

  63. Fireball says:

    I’m still waiting for Fulham to splurge on a king-size, quality, premiership-level defensive MF. Everyone and their mother knows that’s what they need. Come on you Whites, 15 more days to make it happen!

    This doesn’t make a bit of difference in Fulham’s chances staying up. And.. they don’t get King from CCC’s Watford, and so EJ is next on their list?!? I’m happy for EJ, but isn’t there some other proven impact striker somewhere in Europe Fulham can afford?

  64. duck1318 says:

    I am surprised about both trades. I don’t know why a team would get rid of two established defenders. If Jimmy Conrad stays healthy next season that could have been a great defensive line. However, I think the Johnson deal is worth it especially if that amount of money is correct.

  65. duck13118 says:

    I should clarify. The Johnson deal is good for KC and MLS. It remains to be seen if this will be good for Johnson and/or Fulham

  66. Paul Lorinczi says:

    This is actually a good move for Fulham.

    Now they can put Dempsey in a position where he can start using his strengths. He is better going at guys than playing with his back to goal.

    Since Sanchez has left, Fulham look like they are playing more creative Football. The Sanchez style was terrible.

  67. Nordy says:

    I don’t think EJ is what Fulham needs. Too many question marks. And we don’t have time to for him to find his form. We need goals now!

  68. Tom says:

    Seems a lot of you Quakes supporters are dissing Garcia. He may not be flashy but he’s as steady as they come. I’ve often wondered why he never got a sniff with the MNT. If Onyewu can play for the MNT then Garcia should. I think probably his lack of height is what has hurt him.

  69. aristotle says:

    He did play with the MNT.

  70. Chris says:


    With the signing of Marlon King @ Fulham does that pretty much kill the deal for EJ?

  71. Thom says:

    a waste of money on Fulhams part