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Pontius signs new contract with D.C. United

Chris Pontius, who started 23 league matches and played numerous positions in his rookie season last year, has signed a new long-term contract with D.C. United, the club announced Thursday morning.

Although terms were not disclosed, it's safe to say he will receive a significant pay raise after agreeing to a base salary of $36,000 and guaranteed compensation of $66,000 before last season. His previous deal was probably two years plus two club-held option years, with incentives and incremental raises.

Pontius, 22, had four goals and three assists in the regular season and eight goals and six assists in 40 overall matches, earning him finalist honors for MLS rookie of the year along with the winner, Los Angeles defender Omar Gonzalez, and Toronto goalkeeper Stefan Frei. He played on the flank, in central midfield, at withdrawn forward and striker.

Last month he was invited to U.S. national team training camp for the first time, and despite not being included on the game-day roster for the friendly against Honduras, he has been recalled for camp starting next week in Carson, Calif. The Americans will face El Salvador

Meantime, I am awaiting confirmation on the extent of midfielder Danny Szetela's knee injury, which apparently will require surgery.

By Steve Goff  |  February 4, 2010; 10:35 AM ET
Categories:  D.C. United  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Thursday kickaround
Next: U.S. roster for El Salvador friendly

Comments

Great move to lock him in.

Posted by: nairbsod | February 4, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

Hearty congrats to Pontius. He's earned the raise and long-term investment.

For the short-term: With Szetela down, maybe it's time to eat a little pride and bring back Gomez?

Posted by: fischy | February 4, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

What effect if any does this have on his future ability to play in Europe?

Posted by: OWNTF | February 4, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

That's it, I'm getting Party Boy slapped on the back of my 08/09 authentic!

Posted by: DadRyan | February 4, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Szetela--important acquisition? Or the MOST important acquisition?

Posted by: Logan_Circle | February 4, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

So what are the odds that Szetela gets more playing time in '10 than he did in '09? (ugg)

Posted by: tcbannon | February 4, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Inching up to the salary cap!!

Posted by: Kev29 | February 4, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

"So what are the odds that Szetela gets more playing time in '10 than he did in '09? (ugg)

Posted by: tcbannon"

If the past is prologue, not much chance at all. He reported out of shape last year, never worked himself into shape during the season, apparently showed up to camp this year less than 100% fit (possibly blowing out a knee in early training?), and now has another injury to work his way back from (or not).

Poor guy (and poor DCU), I hope he turns it around. I also hope the conspiracy theorists will shut it down on the question of his playing time. Sometimes the simplest explanation -- in this case, the one repeatedly cited by management -- is the correct one.

Posted by: Godfather_of_Goals | February 4, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

51 days until United's first 2010 league match!

Posted by: Curious99 | February 4, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

If Szetela is going to be out of commission, who in the world is going to play center mid with Simms?

Posted by: Atlanta4MLS | February 4, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

What effect if any does this have on his future ability to play in Europe?

Posted by: OWNTF

It gives MLS a lot more negotiating power.

Posted by: Reignking | February 4, 2010 12:05 PM | Report abuse

I heard part of the contract was a bow tie, cuff-links, and leapard print thong

Posted by: SexyOffender | February 4, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

51 days until United's first 2010 league match!

Posted by: Curious99 | February 4, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

If Szetela is going to be out of commission, who in the world is going to play center mid with Simms?

-----------------------------------------------------

I'm sure we'll read the team is thrilled to have such depth and go forward with John DiRaimondo and Floribert N'Galula. By the way have either of them ever started a first-division game?

Posted by: fischy | February 4, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

By the way have either of them ever started a first-division game?

________________________________

Not sure about N'Galula, but DiRaimondo started several games for the Rapids two seasons ago, and would have continued to do so if not for an injury. He started that season for Colorado at center mid, and helped the Rapids defeat L.A. in their season opener. He marked up well against Donovan and Beckham in that game.

Posted by: LUA13 | February 4, 2010 12:28 PM | Report abuse

We need a high caibre Center Midfielder now! Chang and Payne, put up the bucks!

Posted by: lemovs1 | February 4, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

DiRaimondo doesn't get the credit he deserves. He hasn't really had a chance, but this could very well be it. Shoot, didn't you see his wonder goal on the first day of training over at DCU Dot com?

Posted by: DadRyan | February 4, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

I will gladly, whole-heartedly, and immediately trade years of mediocrity and low spending on players in exchange for a positive (DC-area, Metro-accessable) conclusion to the stadium situation. If United doesn't win the Cup for another five years, but they get a permanent home in DC, I will be perfectly content.

I am very glad that we've secured Party Boy for several more years. He's a great player and could easily become the face of the franchise in two-three years.

Posted by: VercengetorixII | February 4, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Working for peanuts is all very fine
But I can show you a better time...

(Chang and Payne, in perfect harmony, to Party Boy)

Posted by: assocfoot | February 4, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

We need a high caibre Center Midfielder now! Chang and Payne, put up the bucks!

Posted by: lemovs1 | February 4, 2010 12:31 PM

Put up the bucks for who? people have been saying on here for weeks "we need a high quality center mid", but few people on here have suggested who this special player should be? Do you want the FO to spend money for the sake of spending money (Gallardo), or do you want them to take the time to find the correct player for the club?

Posted by: VTUnited | February 4, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

This makes me happy re: Pontius.

If Onalfo can help turn szetela into an assett, then he is already succeeding with DCU.

Posted by: DCB23 | February 4, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Well, it looks like Portsmouth may escape relegation after all, because it turns out that Avram ALWAYS gets a happy ending!

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/2838279/Avram-Grant-was-the-Premier-League-manager-who-visited-a-brothel.html

Posted by: OWNTF | February 4, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I never heard this about John Terry.

"In 2001, Mr. Terry drunkenly taunted American tourists in a Heathrow Airport hotel in the immediate aftermath of the World Trade Center attacks." WSJ

Posted by: OWNTF | February 4, 2010 1:37 PM | Report abuse

We need a high caibre Center Midfielder now! Chang and Payne, put up the bucks!

Posted by: lemovs1 | February 4, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse
____________________________________________

Too late, we'll have to wait til' june when the transfer window opens back up!

Posted by: BolivianDCFan | February 4, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

I never heard this about John Terry.

"In 2001, Mr. Terry drunkenly taunted American tourists in a Heathrow Airport hotel in the immediate aftermath of the World Trade Center attacks." WSJ

Posted by: OWNTF | February 4, 2010 1:37 PM

I know someone on this blog who is going to blindly defend mr. terry...

Posted by: VTUnited | February 4, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

Hey, at least he didn't get in a gunfight, like Xerez's manager last year...

Who were the other two idiots with Terry that night, anyway?

Posted by: Reignking | February 4, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Avram Grant has diverse tastes, according to his wife.

"He enjoys an Australian massage, a Japanese massage and a Thai massage."

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | February 4, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Who were the other two idiots with Terry that night, anyway?

Posted by: Reignking | February 4, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

-----------------------------------------

Frank Lampard, Eidur Gudjohnsen and Jody Morris

Posted by: Josh86 | February 4, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse

OWNTF:

I remember that Terry incident. Some captain, right?

***

Szetela needing surgery (especially if it's more than a keyhole-style surgery) puts us in a real bind. DiRaimondo, at this level, is purely defensive. McTavish would also make this a dual holding system. Quaranta is not a natural fit there, and would leave us starting Khumalo full time on the right (not that Boyzzz is a bad player, but a starter?). N'Galula is a completely unknown quantity. Wallace could come in, but a) that means reverting back to Burch at left back and b) that still leaves us with 2 defensive midfielders.

We all want to see an attacking midfielder brought in. This injury may have forced the club's hand. Otherwise, we're going to have to be like many other MLS clubs, playing 6 defense-first guys and basically waiting for our opponent to make big mistakes rather than creating things on our own.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | February 4, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Can we at least wait until a diagnosis/surgery is made public before we write off Szetela?

If it's an ACL replacement, his season is effectively over, if anything less, he'll play again . .

Posted by: delantero | February 4, 2010 3:06 PM | Report abuse

I never heard this about John Terry.
"In 2001, Mr. Terry drunkenly taunted American tourists in a Heathrow Airport hotel in the immediate aftermath of the World Trade Center attacks." WSJ Posted by: OWNTF

I used to like Terry, felt bad for him when he blew the Champions' League PK and all . . . not anymore, with this story above, he's become public enemy #1.

Any details of what actually happened at Heathrow?

Posted by: delantero | February 4, 2010 3:10 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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