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MLS: No Stateside move for Alan Smith

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New Notts County player-coach Alan Smith has ruled out any potential transatlantic move to Major League Soccer.

The former England international blasted the structure of the United States' elite division as he discussed his decision to join the Magpies rather than a more lucrative club in America..

Talking to the Nottingham Post, Smith said: "I wasn't interested in it because I wanted to come here. As soon as I spoke to Shaun [Derry] and Greg Abbott my decision was made.

"'I'd spoken about going further afield to America, but it never really appealed to me because there's no promotion or relegation and I don't like playing for fun."

He had been linked with a transfer to the MLS as recently as November, after mentioning the possibility of signing for newcomers Orlando City.

The forward told CitiBlog: "I’m getting married in a couple of years, unless I go play in America, but the season overlaps and runs at the wrong time."

He added: "David Beckham’s [Miami franchise] would be too late for me because that would be 2017, but I’ve got a gym with my best friend in Orlando and they’ve just got confirmation yesterday that in 2015 they’re going into the MLS.

"So I have contacts out there and that’s a possibility so you’ve just got to have as many options as you can really."

Smith had previously been mooted as a potential target for the Lions after talks with manager Adrian Heath while in the States for a pre-season tour with Newcastle United in 2011.

Speaking to the Journal at the time, Heath said: "I’d love to take Alan over here at some point.

"We have spoken a couple of times so far and it seems at the moment he wants to sit out the last year of his contract at Newcastle. So I may have to wait but if anything changes, he can come to Orlando whenever he wants.

"I know he likes it here and I’d love to sign him."

As well as Newcastle, Smith has appeared for Leeds United, Manchester United and MK Dons, and though he won't become Orlando's star man, there is talk in Italy that Robinho may fulfil that role.

La Gazetta dello Sport are reporting that the Brazil international is looking to end his career in America, and would be willing to take a "vacation" between the end of the European season with AC Milan and the Lions' induction to the MLS next year.

City's president Phil Rawlins revealed in November that the club were also targeting the 30-year-old's teammate and compatriot Kaka, though Milan chief executive Adriano Galliani has played down this notion in the past week.

Both players were left out of Phil Scolari's World Cup squad, despite possessing 179 caps and 56 international goals between them.

Orlando City are owned by Brazilian Flavio Augusto da Silva, and Rawlins told MLSsoccer.com: "Obviously, with our connections in Brazil, we hope to bring up a very very strong Designated Player and have them here in the first year."

The club currently sit top of the USL Professional Division, and will face AS Roma in a friendly on Friday night.

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Topics:
MLS
Notts County
Football
League One
Alan Smith

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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