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Running with the Herd: Preseason awards, call-ups, and Corboz moving on

Corboz and some guy named Burrito play some soccer.
Corboz and some guy named Burrito play some soccer.
Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports
Mael Corboz heads to Germany

After being cut by the New York Red Bulls as the MLS season started, Mael Corboz appeared to have found his own niche in the American soccer pyramid. He had joined the Wilmington Hammerheads in the USL and was starting every game for them, impressing many. With a year or two of play like that it was likely Corboz could find his way back to MLS, especially considering Wilmington's affiliation with NYCFC.

That appears to not be the case, though. In July, Corboz left Wilmington to join MSV Duisburg on trial, missing his first game of the season. Wilmington's owner has a minority share in Duisburg; the move made sense, especially for a training stint for a young guy with a French passport in his back pocket. Mael Corboz hasn't played another game for Wilmington since then. Rumors of the move to Duisburg shuttered for a while, but then news that Wilmington would not return to the USL in 2017 came out.

More recently, his Wilmington teammates have wished him well abroad and news of Corboz in Duisburg has resurfaced. One interesting caveat is that Corboz is apparently still on trial and only training with the team. Apparently, his contract with the Hammerheads goes until the end of November and Corboz is unlikely to join the German side before then. Either Duisburg is unwilling to pay a transfer fee or Wilmington is unwilling to release Corboz from his contract, a rather strange situation for a player moving between two teams who share ownership. At the very least, it's unfortunate that the young midfielder will possibly have to sit out until the winter before he can play again.

Najem, Basuljevic receive preseason honors

TopDrawerSoccer's preseason awards are out for college soccer, and the New York Red Bulls appear to be running the midfield.

Two New York Red Bulls Academy graduates, Arun Basuljevic and Adam Najem, feature in the Preseason First Team Best XI. As if the New York Red Bulls weren't deep enough in the midfield already. Najem, a senior who played for the PDL Champion Michigan Bucks this summer, is a Hermann Trophy favorite, while Basuljevic, a junior who starred for Red Bulls U23 team the last few months, will look to lead a Hoya's squad who have lost half a dozen players to the pros.

Additionally, New York Red Bulls U23 starting goalkeeper, Eric Klenofsky of Monmouth, made TDS' Preseason Third Team. Klenofsky is not an academy graduate, but he is certainly a local player the team appears to be keeping an eye on for the future, a la Tim Schmoll.

Abang moves on

Anatole Abang appears to have one foot, two hands, and a shoulder out the door in New York. A lack of playing time has understandably left the player frustrated for lack of opportunities this year, culminating in a loan move to Hobro IK in Denmark.

Abang was an incredible physical presence for the first team last year, and dominant at the USL level when given the chance. However, with his inconsistent game time on both levels this year, it has been hard for Abang to find form on either level. With his development stagnating and rumors of European offers drying up, a change in scenery appears to be just what Abang needs. One would hope he tears it up in Denmark, develops remarkably, and returns to New York ready to BWP's heir apparent, but that seems more and more unlikely. Instead, Abang will become just another name in the long list of prospects New York couldn't develop or didn't trust, and that's a shame.

Gloster gets the call

Long time New York Red Bulls academy player and recent USYNT residency player Chris Gloster has been called into the US U17 National Team. The fullback recently made his debut for New York Red Bulls II, after playing away from the club all last year with US Soccer's residency program down in Bradenton, Florida. Gloster has long been a staple of the Youth National Teams, and it is good to see him continue to receive call-ups despite residency ending. Gloster and the U17s will face Qatar, Portugal, and Mexico in the Torneo de Naciones in Mexico City at the end of August.

No other active Red Bulls are on the roster, but former Red Bulls Academy member and current PSG player, Timothy Weah, was also called up.

Thorsheim, Middelfart battling for survival

It's only three games into the Danish Second (read: third) Division season, but Chris Thorsheim and Middelfart are already in a relegation battle. Despite starting the season off with an undefeated record of 1-2-0, Middelfart are last in the league contending for relegation with -7 points. The team was hit with a 12 point penalty by the league due to the club's financial troubles prior to the season starting. In turn, Middelfart's record, which would be good for second in their division, find themselves firmly in last place. Thorsheim, who appears to be a regular starter for the team at rightback, and his teammates will need to continue to play outstandingly to dig themselves out of this hole their club has dug them.