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United News and Notes

*Argentine playmaker Marcelo Gallardo will join the team in a week to 10 days, GM Dave Kasper said. Besides the sports hernia surgery last summer and the knee problem that ended his 2008 season, we found out today that Gallardo had adductor surgery in December. It was performed by the Argentine national team doctor.

"His starting points [in training camp] won't be great," Kasper said. "He obviously has to get healthy and get fit. Now it's a matter of just finishing the final rehabbing and when he can begin training."

Kasper confirmed that, early in the offseason, Gallardo "expressed that he may have an interest in going back to Argentina, but that never really went anywhere."

*Team captain Jaime Moreno is still recovering from knee and hernia surgeries and will begin training when the club moves to grass fields in Bradenton.

*Fred is having his visa renewed in Brazil, and barring complications, will arrive Monday.

*Back-up goalie Zach Wells is about four weeks away from returning after foot surgery.

*United's negotiations with Honduran forward Walter Martinez are "a little difficult right now" because of Marathon's loan demands, Kasper said.

*Colombian defender Gonzalo Martinez remains in limbo. He is not here and "we're going to see where we are with this group plus a couple more trialists and a couple more players we are trying to sign," Kasper said. "He may decide to sign in Colombia." A few MLS teams have shown interest in trading for his rights but no formal offers, Kasper said.

Much more in the continuation of this thread.....

*Second-round draft choice Lyle Adams, a defender from Wake Forest, is in Europe exploring opportunities. "All indications were that he was coming here, but I think he had a last-minute change of heart and wanted to fulfill a trial opportunity," Kasper said. "He is going through that right now, and we will see where we end up with him."

*Rookie goalkeeper Milos Kocic from Loyola College in Baltimore is in camp and, despite possible opportunities in Europe, "we feel confident that he wants to be here," Kasper said.

*Free agent defender Kyle Veris, who played for Los Angeles and then was with a Norwegian second-division club, is on trial and most likely will go to Florida with the team on Feb. 3. United is intrigued by his size (6 feet 4, 195 pounds) and athletic ability.

*With the new roster limitations and the reduction in developmental slots, Craig Thompson, Quavas Kirk, Pat Carroll and Ryan Cordeiro were not invited to camp.

*Defender Ibrahim Koroma, who was with United on a free loan late last season, will not be back because the African club that owns his contract wanted a fee.

By Steve Goff  |  January 22, 2009; 2:09 PM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: A Few Minutes With Ben Olsen
Next: Video: Donovan's Goals


Certainly it is early, but the first impression one gets is that the United operation isn't near as tight as one would hope. Lots of loose ends. Used to be that draftees "wanted" to play for DC, now we see more and more of "I'll have to get back to you." Might be the changing nature of US soccer, but maybe not.

Posted by: Ruthie1 | January 22, 2009 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Looks like an end to My my my my my my Koroma....

Posted by: joedoc1 | January 22, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Anyone else need a little O.R. work?

Posted by: Eugene7 | January 22, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Is there a fairly up-to-date roster for the team posted anywhere? The one on the DC United website is hopelessly out of date.

Posted by: janspoor | January 22, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

I'm really hating the smaller rosters....I won't miss Kirk or Carroll -- I thought their skills were a bit limited. But, Cordeiro's pace and dribbling made him intriguing, and I loved Thompson's hustle. Reminded me of a young Namoff. Hard to say we'll miss Koroma, but I was intrigued to see if we could groom a young African talent.

I'm really hating the smaller rosters.

Sounds like Kocic will have a great chance to win the back-up job, with Wells out. I'd like to see that happen. I imagine Crayton will start this year, but that the FO might want to phase him into a backup role in the next year or two, if possible

Posted by: fischy | January 22, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

What qualifies Adams to work overseas? Did I miss that?

Posted by: JkR- | January 22, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Hmmm - I can't really say that I feel like we've made the roster changes that get me excited for this team. It sounds like the few additions that we've made are ones that are capable of contributing rather than being a lot of projects.

If there's one thing this team still needs - it's speed. Speed up top. Speed through the middle. Speed speed speed. Maybe some of the fast guys who wash out for Urban Meyer and the Florida Gators can play the other football......


Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | January 22, 2009 2:43 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: DadRyan | January 22, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

JkR- I believe he has a passport.

I am really concerned about Gallardo. 3 surgeries is hard to come back from. I don't think hes going to do much of anything for us.

Posted by: strago | January 22, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

What qualifies Adams to work overseas? Did I miss that?

Posted by: JkR- | January 22, 2009 2:43 PM


You don't need to qualify in many countries.

Posted by: beach3 | January 22, 2009 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Re: Adams - Not every country has the protectionist work permit requirements of the UK. His trial is probably in Denmark with the rest of Wake Forest.

Re: uninvited players - I agree with Fischy. No problem with those names with the exception of Cordeiro. He seemed to have a good shot at progressing up to a serious contributor.

Posted by: Eric_in_Baltimore | January 22, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Maybe somebody will want to give one of those 4 a shot and we can get a little something for there rights..

Thanks again Goff.

Posted by: BurchFan4 | January 22, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Reading "intrigued by his size" with regards to DC had me rolling on the floor at work.

Posted by: sitruc | January 22, 2009 2:57 PM | Report abuse

"intrigued by his size"

Thats what she said

Posted by: AnthonyTheGreat | January 22, 2009 3:09 PM | Report abuse

On a not so serious note, I wonder if Victor could afford to make Onyewu filthy rich to play for us... now that'd be something!

Posted by: BurchFan4 | January 22, 2009 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Please, please, please let the be a viable replacement for Gallardo somewhere... call me pessimistic, but I don't see him playing 110% and through a full season this year.

Posted by: Dynaformer | January 22, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Why does Goff keep referring to Gallardo as "Argentine playmaker"? Don't you have to play to be considered a playmaker?

Posted by: MNKicker | January 22, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Sooo... how is Veris's footskills or ball control? I dont care so much about his size if hes clumsy and doesnt possess at least some ball skills, and calmness in the back.

Posted by: BolivianDCFan | January 22, 2009 3:41 PM | Report abuse


What about all of that can be considered good news?

Gallardo coming to United in the same condition he was last year... plus, he considered not returning.

Moreno is on the mend... again.

Fred's got to get his visa renewed... that never goes well for United.

Wells is still injured

Adams is in line with DC United's draft pick policy... get drafted, then go to Europe.

Walter Martinez is... difficult

Gonzalo Martinez has no status...

And here I was getting excited for the season. Now I wish the season would start in May to give United enough time to find a team.

Posted by: TCompton | January 22, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

I don't see him playing 110% and through a full season this year.

Posted by: Dynaformer | January 22, 2009 3:25 PM

Because it's mathematically impossible to play 110%? Then I agree

Posted by: Kev29 | January 22, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

The more I hear on the Gallardo front, the unhappier I become. 3 leg/groin surgeries is alot, especially for a 32 year old player. Also, he had leg surgery in December and never informed DCU? That is the gist of Goff's "quote" from Kasper. Seems to me that could be grounds for termination of contract -- something that might make sense for all concerned. I'm just wondering if Gallardo will be physically and mentally up to playing in DC this year.

Posted by: griffin1108 | January 22, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

The news about Gallardo never gets any better than "mildly disturbing". The team needs some guarantees from him if he says he expects to be back in "a week to 10 days" and was contemplating not coming back at earlier this offseason. He better at least fax the team a copy of his plane ticket and valid visa.

DC cannot expect to be a playoff contender if we get the same contributions again from Gallardo and Olsen. The team is pretty old and the old guys get lots of money (by MLS salary cap standards) so it's hard to offer younger players much.

Posted by: Joel_M_Lane | January 22, 2009 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Adams was in Norway and is now showing his wares to a team in Austria.

Gallardo will be telecommuting from home suggesting to his teammates on the field where to pass the ball and when to shoot through the new Bluetooth system DCU acquired (hence maintaiing his status as official playmaker).

Gonzalo Martinez will officially change his first name to Walter wear a new number and play forward so we can save face on two counts (not being able to dump one and acquire the other).

This team looks like it will be so much better than last year...not!

Posted by: LostinPotomac | January 22, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Just get rid of Gallardo! Its gonna save money, time, and problems down the line...

Posted by: AnthonyTheGreat | January 22, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I won't mind the roster size if that means everybody on the roster is better than Craig Thompson. Thompson wasn't great, but last season there were lots of guys on the bench who just couldn't contribute anything. Thompson at least could be trusted to give 100% and not do anything too stupid, and we relied on him for several games where we had injury concerns. I think if everybody on your roster could be trusted to fill in when needed that could be considered an upgrade to the MLS roster situation.

I think JKR was asking about what skills does Adams possess that might make him suitable for employment at a European club. I mean, the guy was a late second round MLS pick. That usually doesn't bode well for a career in Europe.

Posted by: Matte | January 22, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Two months from seasson opening and fragile Gallardo remains a big "if", we have too many aging veterans in the team...prospects do not look good this year, last year the club was a hospital!!.

Posted by: cgzmn | January 22, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

It's also times like this where I feel like MLS' roster rules really prohibit a team from ever really rebuilding without ever tearing apart the machine when DC had a year like they did last year.

To retool - you need to toss the whole team out and start all over and suffer a few years to get back to a point where you can enjoy a run for a couple of years where you augment parts of the team.

Right now we are where we were after the runs of 1996-2000. Our nucleus is aging/injured and the team needs to be broken down in order to get the pieces to fit back together to where you don't start pre-season with this many roster questions.

Posted by: VirginiaBlueBlood | January 22, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Regarding Adams, it is not hard for a good college player to catch on with second division clubs on the continent. Witness our picks from the last two years: Jacobsen got a deal in France and Needham is now in Norway after a year in Puerto Rico.

Posted by: LostinPotomac | January 22, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

But look at Gallardo:
- three surgeries in the past 6 months
- one surgery that he did not notify DCU about
- Wishes to stay in Argentina to rehab
- Wont join DC till warmer weather in FL
- Numerous rumors and speculations about wanting to go back to Argentina over the offseason
- In his thirties

I dont think he cares in my opinion. He is one of our DPs and is holding us down on numerous young prospects - with his money we could pay the fee for Koroma, pursue Lyle Adams with a solid contract, and also pick up other prospects for a decent price. I just think Gallardo will be useless this year. Hopefully he can prove me wrong.

I also think DC should give up Luciano Emilio and pickup younger Freddy Montero who is much younger and has a interest in the MLS since training with Seattle Sounders FC

Posted by: AnthonyTheGreat | January 22, 2009 4:41 PM | Report abuse


We can't get rid of Gallardo. The money was guaranteed through this season. We are stuck with him for better (if his booboos heal and he does not stub hs toe on his way here) or worse.

Posted by: LostinPotomac | January 22, 2009 4:49 PM | Report abuse

'Gallardo "expressed that he may have an interest in going back to Argentina, but that never really went anywhere." '

--That could mean he decided he loves it here . . . or that no one in Argentina wanted to sign him.

Hooboy, Kasper's take on Gallardo is depressing.

Posted by: fallschurch1 | January 22, 2009 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, I should have been more specific in my question about Adams. While I was aware that most of the Euro leagues are not as restrictive as England, I thought that there was at least SOME eligibility requirement for non-Euro citizens. I thought being a Euro member had some type of employment protection against non member immigrants.

Like, at least are they an experienced professional in their field?

But, yeah, is he even qualified from a talent perspective? I'll take credit for that too...(even if not due)

Posted by: JkR- | January 22, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Next year let's just tell Fred that camp opens January 8.

Posted by: fallschurch1 | January 22, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

I just hope the lights don't go out again this year.
That was embarrassing.

Posted by: StewartDC8 | January 22, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

3 surgeries. That's a lot of scar tissue waiting to tear...

Posted by: fischy | January 22, 2009 5:19 PM | Report abuse

I saw an earlier comment that Gallardo's December surgery happened without DCU's knowledge? If true, that seems odd. You would think that would be a violation of his contract. DCU sure does look stupid on this Gallardo deal.

Posted by: mbyrd28 | January 22, 2009 5:32 PM | Report abuse

At this point in time Gallardo does not deserve to wear a DC United jersey let alone a youth clubs jersey. I had nothing but the highest hopes when we signed him, but so far he has turned out to be Riquelme v 2.0. Maybe it's just the way these players were raised that they could play whenever they wanted and not when they don't want too -- but I frankly think that DC should step up to the plate and control the situation. It sounds more like they are coddling him and making him feel like hes the greatest thing ever.

Maybe I eat my words after he becomes Schletto, but I doubt that is going to be the case. As I mentioned earlier, 3 surgeries is an AWFUL lot to come back from. I hope he proves me wrong...

Posted by: strago | January 22, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

DC's website says Peralta's move was a loan deal...

Posted by: StewartDC8 | January 22, 2009 5:54 PM | Report abuse

In the past 3 seasons, I have had serious doubts about certain roster moves made by upper United management. To my surprise, some have prospered (Doe, Khumalo). The reality, however, is that the majority of these moves have been complete failures Niel).

Remind me again why we got rid of Christian Gomez?

Instead of resigning the former LEAGUE MVP for a measly 100K more/year (and DP status), we signed a former "star" with a known history of injury for 1.4 million more(+ a DP slot)than the new Gomez contract would have cost. The "Gallardo Gaffe" has United gasping for air under the MLS salary cap limits, severely limiting management's ability to search out high-impact players.

The truth is, United will not have room to operate until they dump Gallardo's contract.

Good luck selling broken merchandise.

Posted by: FbAller | January 22, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Sooo... how is Veris's footskills or ball control? I dont care so much about his size if hes clumsy and doesnt possess at least some ball skills, and calmness in the back.

Posted by: BolivianDCFan | January 22, 2009 3:41 PM

Excellent point. The FO (and the fans) were also "intrigued" by the size of Kirk, Stokes and Peralta. I'd love the find that great player with size and skills, but so far, it's not working out so well.

Posted by: DrBeaker | January 22, 2009 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Seriously? Someone still doesn't know what a dumb move it would've been to retain CGomez?

Posted by: Reignking | January 22, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Remind me again why we got rid of Christian Gomez?
Posted by: FbAller | January 22, 2009 6:03 PM

Really? Perhaps it's because they saw what was coming in the near future, ie. note where he was in the 2nd half of the Rapids's season. Not only that, but he wanted guaranteed years! If he were such a godsend that we should've kept, why is Colorado doing whatever they can to shop him around?

He's gone...let's move on.

Posted by: DrBeaker | January 22, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

"I saw an earlier comment that Gallardo's December surgery happened without DCU's knowledge? If true, that seems odd. You would think that would be a violation of his contract,,, "

Posted by: mbyrd28


Actually, the article does not explicitly quote anyone claiming that DC United did not know about the Gallardo surgery. It says "We" (e.g., Goff/Soccer Insider) found out about it today.

Posted by: Towson_Tiger | January 22, 2009 7:30 PM | Report abuse

Count me as another one bummed that Cordeiro didn't get a shot to make this year's team.

And speaking of the new tiny rosters, are teams really going to carry three keepers? Is it legit for them to do some kind of loan deal with USL to maintain the rights to your third keeper but not actually pay them?

Gallardo.... ech.... Not sure how any news about him could get worse.

Posted by: edgeonyou | January 22, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

What about all of that can be considered good news?

Posted by: TCompton | January 22, 2009 3:47 PM

This part:

> Wells is still injured

Posted by: edgeonyou | January 22, 2009 8:02 PM | Report abuse

We dont really have a lot of "healthy" depth to work with so far this preseason.

Posted by: AnthonyTheGreat | January 22, 2009 8:03 PM | Report abuse

I feel like I should cancel my season tickets. Oh well...looks like I will have to go through the pain another year.

Posted by: DCUnitedFootball | January 22, 2009 8:26 PM | Report abuse


Have you seen Gallardo's contract? Any chance United could have him do maintenance work at RFK? God knows DC United needs just as much help off the field as we do on.

This team kind of reminds me of the movie Major League before the Indians were good.

Maybe if Martinez sacrifices a bucket of Popeyes things will get better.

Posted by: Southeasterner | January 22, 2009 8:32 PM | Report abuse

Somebody figure out what Dallas did to get rid of Davino's guaranteed $400K contract for this year and try the same for Gallardo.

Posted by: Shmenge | January 22, 2009 9:45 PM | Report abuse

What a disaster Gallardo has turned out to be. An absolute debacle that likely precludes this team from being competitive until 2010 at the earliest.

In MLS, unlike every other professional league, you have one free agent, and if you misjudge him, you are screwed. Had we gotten Veron, we may well have won the Cup last year and next. Instead, we threw away our one free agent and ended up with a guy that will likely never play at his former level again.

Posted by: kjm1971 | January 22, 2009 11:30 PM | Report abuse

All the Gallardo lovers and Gomez haterz had the upper hand at the begining of last season and yet they still think that this was the best move around??lol
Can you guys please admit that Gallardo was a waste and the better option would gave been to stick it out with GOmez, even if he had as bad of a year as gallardo has had (impossible, gomez at least tried)we would have still saved what 1.2 million or more. We would have had a better chance to get rid of him if he sucked, try giving another team gallardos salary I DARE YOU. The truth is it doesnt matter what Gallardo or Gomez or anyone has done for other teams. ALl I care about is what they do for my team, my colors. NOw tell me based on OUR team has Gallardo been a waste? Now the trickier question, has Gomez been a waste? or better yet has Gomez let us down like Gallardo?

Posted by: Norteno4life | January 22, 2009 11:56 PM | Report abuse

Amen mah brotha

Posted by: AnthonyTheGreat | January 23, 2009 12:02 AM | Report abuse

The negativity on the board is appalling! There is plenty of action and positive moves. . it just hasn't been made official.

The Honduran will add some excitement. I like Janicki's growth prospects and the possibility of a healthy Gallardo and an Olsen---despite these clouds of doom now dominant--- would change the season.

How'd Fred do in Australia? Hopefully he'll be recharged. Let him stay a bit longer in Brazil. Kid needs to rest and have some fun or he's going in the tank this season with the other walking rehab cases.

Posted by: delantero | January 23, 2009 12:09 AM | Report abuse

My money is on Fred finding the net for his recently passed father this year. Shoot while I'm at it maybe he, or Quaranta will settle into a real play making role. I know, that's a long shot, but you know me, hopelessly optimistic. I'll give Gallardo a chance to make it back. I just hope he's not the biggest bust in MLS ever.
Hiring ancient history for DPs has got to stop. Don't know how it will, but these MLS clubs are too cash strapped, and rosters too small to put all their eggs in one stinking, tattered basket.
Hope for better news soon.

Posted by: DadRyan | January 23, 2009 12:50 AM | Report abuse

Well in Delantero! To the majority here: bashing the team on the first day of training? It's January relax. Look at this way; if Kasper and Soehn don't have a dramatic change in results, they're out on their bums. This has been made clear by the owners. If they are successful then all you haters will say how you knew it was going to be a great year. I think the players overall did well; considering injuries,coaching, scheduling, and negativity. DC UNITED is the only club in this league whose expectations are to win every title available. 4 mls cups, 2 us open cups, 1 concacaf cup, 1 inter-american cup in 12 years. Support during the good and bad.

Posted by: Dipssince78 | January 23, 2009 12:53 AM | Report abuse

Why does everyone assume DC United did not know about Gallardo's surgery?

Posted by: CHICO13 | January 23, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

DadRyan: thanks for the link!

Dip: "Look at this way; if Kasper and Soehn don't have a dramatic change in results, they're out on their bums." What makes you think United would change past practices so dramatically? We'll suck again for the first third of the season, eventually find some talent that sees us into a streak midseason (talent we should have in camp *now*), and then crash out at the end of the season due to reinjuries to all our overstretched, overage players.

United needs new blood, but the biggest need is in the front office. It takes extraordinary talent to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear, granted, but in the past few years it seems seems as if people are having trouble just finding a needle and thread...

Posted by: janspoor | January 23, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

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