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Tuesday kickaround

*D.C. United waived reserve midfielder John DiRaimondo, who made just one league appearance last year but featured regularly in CONCACAF Champions League and U.S. Open Cup matches. I am expecting the club to soon reach deals with Bolivian defender Juan Manuel Peña, 37, and rookie goalkeeper Andrew Quinn, who will serve as No. 3 on the depth chart behind Troy Perkins and Bill Hamid.

Unless the club makes any late acquisitions or drops another returning player, the final roster slots will come from a four-man group: midfielder Drew Yates and defenders Barry Rice, Daniel Woolard and Jordan Graye. The deadline is Wednesday at 5 p.m.

*In a stunning move, the Chicago Fire cut Jon Busch, the 2008 MLS goalkeeper of the year who played every minute of the past two regular seasons. He earned $135,000 last year. At the moment, Andrew Dykstra, a former Virginia Commonwealth player who did not make a league appearance as a rookie, is the No. 1 goalie. Speculation has turned to Miguel Montes, Fire Coach Carlos de los Cobos' keeper when he was guiding El Salvador's national team. Montes, who is with Salvadoran club Aguila, has more than 30 caps. Meantime, San Jose has dropped New Zealand midfielder Simon Elliott, who is in search of a club before the World Cup.

*American forward Jozy Altidore (hamstring) is hoping to return for Hull City this weekend against Fulham.

*I love the WPS's format for the all-star game June 30 at the Atlanta Beat's stadium in Kennesaw, Ga.: 36 players selected (22 through voting, 14 by coaches and the commissioner); the U.S. and international with the most votes are captains, who, in the days before the game, will join with coaches in choosing their starting lineups though an alternating, playground-style process. Credit to the women's league for its creativity: the playoff format is also unique with the No. 4 seed playing No. 3, the winner facing No. 2 and that survivor advancing to the final against the top seed.

For Americans abroad and TV listings.....

*Americans abroad:
Monday
D Clarence Goodson 90 in Start's 3-3 tie at Rosenborg
Tuesday
GK Marcus Hahnemann and Wolves at West Ham
D Jonathan Spector and West Ham vs. Wolves
MF Alejandro Bedoya and Orebro at Malmo
F Kenny Cooper and Plymouth at Ipswich

*Soccer on TV:
Spain, Gijon-Coruna 3 p.m. ET, ESPN Deportes
England, West Ham-Wolves 4 p.m. Fox Soccer Plus
Spain, Sevilla-Xerez 5 p.m. GolTV
Libertadores, Estudiantes-Bolivar 6:30 p.m. Fox Sports Espanol
Libertadores, Libertad-Universitario 8:30 p.m. FSE

By Steve Goff  |  March 23, 2010; 8:48 AM ET
Categories:  Americans Abroad , D.C. United , MLS , TV , Women  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Najar signs with D.C. United
Next: D.C. United close to acquiring Peña

Comments

Jeff Bradley was pimping that system for MLS way back in the day.

Posted by: beach3 | March 23, 2010 8:58 AM | Report abuse

Why did we only keep two midfielders for the defensive midfield position? Seeing as Quaranta in the attacking mid position is more an experiment than anything else, this sounds rather dicy to me. With all the wide/attacking players that we have, this seems like a strange move.

Posted by: UnitedDemon | March 23, 2010 9:15 AM | Report abuse

My post-season system, which Garber has yet to call me about is like a regular tournament and is as follows:

Top 8 teams make the playoffs in two groups of 4. They're seeded by regular season points and play a one-game round-robin with the higher seed having home field advantage (a real HFA!). The top two in in each group advance to the semifinals (A1 v B2 and B1 v A2) which could be a home-home series or home field advantage to the group winner.

I think this would keep the number of post season games roughly the same as the current format - OK, the 2009 format, I have no idea what MLS plan in 2010 - and, therefore, would maintain post-season revenue.

Don, gimme a call, would ya.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 23, 2010 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Not that they seem poised to make a difference, but 3 of Yates, Rice, Woolard and Graye will make the squad, right? And we're going to have a roster of 26? I'm getting more and more optimistic.

If only my terrible luck didn't affect the teams that I support. (I became a lions fan in 2007 and got season tickets 2 years ago for DC)

Posted by: SexyOffender | March 23, 2010 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Did the article say "37" or "27" year old Juan Manuel Pena... I mean at 37 you might as well put Juan Antonio Samaranch or Juan Valdez in front of poor Troy Perkins... because all three of them combined are going to get baked w/the speed we will be seeing. I love the Troy Perkins signing but just wish we would have also picked up central midfielder & an attacking speedy front runner. we are asking Troy to do way to much.
Ok I guess with the signing of a 37 yrs. young center back and a 17 year old winger it all averages out to 27 yrs so I guess we go for it and trust the DCU front office. Personnel decision making has been very interesting this spring & I don't think we can just write it all off on the CBA factor... Is Santino fit yet?

Posted by: Zipfutbol | March 23, 2010 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Question:

Now that Jon Busch is a "free agent", what is the process other MLS teams must follow to sign him under the new CBA?

Posted by: invncbl | March 23, 2010 9:34 AM | Report abuse

Question:

Now that Jon Busch is a "free agent", what is the process other MLS teams must follow to sign him under the new CBA?

Posted by: invncbl

I think another type of lottery...or raffle...or bake sale...

Posted by: Reignking | March 23, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

I love that All-star format idea. Are they all going to line up on the sideline and say "pick me!"?

I'm not sure that their playoff format is necessarily great as we saw last year. I think it lets the top teams get a little rusty while they wait around for their match.

I almost wish we would do an Aussie Rules style finals format where the higher seeds get a chance to have a loss but not get eliminated. That would make the top couple of spots in the league table even more valuable in the playoffs.

Posted by: fedssocr | March 23, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Don't the Union automatically get Busch?

Posted by: SexyOffender | March 23, 2010 9:43 AM | Report abuse

I wonder what the chance of Busch moving down to the new second division is. Sure, he was making $135K last year, but Louis Crayton was making $100K-plus and just signed with the new Minnesota team. Busch could be a star in that league and maybe transition to coaching like Steve Ralston will be doing in St. Louis.

Posted by: paulp_00 | March 23, 2010 9:44 AM | Report abuse

You know that Busch is an excellent keeper, right?

Posted by: Reignking | March 23, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Sign-in info for DadRyan's MLS Fantasy Division:

www.mfls.com
League: Argy Bargy Insiders
Password: united
My team: Night Marchers

Posted by: benonthehill | March 23, 2010 9:53 AM | Report abuse

That's a cool format for the WPS All-Stars.

Can they have something like the home run derby or the 3-point contest? Probably not. But I'd pay $5 to see whether Cat Whitehill could land a ball in a garbage can 75 yards away.

Posted by: OWNTF | March 23, 2010 9:57 AM | Report abuse

I'm in the Argy Bargy league. Boalsburg United.

Posted by: JkR- | March 23, 2010 10:04 AM | Report abuse

Busch could just start his own league. Making it a ...

Posted by: WorldCup | March 23, 2010 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I'm in with Argy Bargy Insiders fantasy soccer.....let's roll.

Vamos United!!

Posted by: Smitty68 | March 23, 2010 10:14 AM | Report abuse

@WorldCup:

The former Chicago keeper would also have a built-in beverage sponsor.

Posted by: BaltoFan | March 23, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Eggs -n- Puddin is in Argy Bargy.

Some advice . . . fill out your early rosters with popular players, not just good players as transfer fees loom large as the season goes on . . . i.e. C. Castillo from DC may be a solid choice, but popularity increases fees, so he may only produce a mid range fee.

If a player's fee turns out to be 100 K, you can sell him for a cheaper player and bank the rest for later transfers.

Posted by: delantero | March 23, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

Anybody know if mlsnet.com will have their fantasy league this year?

Posted by: jleppig | March 23, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Busch to St. Louis? Colorado?

Posted by: Reignking | March 23, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

delantero -- I always thought you wanted to buy low, sell high, but you are talking about the "fee" part? I guess that makes sense.

Posted by: Reignking | March 23, 2010 10:37 AM | Report abuse

The very point of an All Star game is to honor players. So there's something a bit incongruous about saddling a few guys with the "honor" of being the metaphorical fat kid picked last for the team.

Maybe I'm reading too much nuance into the whole thing, but I'm pretty sure I'm right: The guys who are picked last would be publicly branded more as "the guys who were picked last" than as "All Star selections." The night would turn into an insult of sorts rather than an honor.

Posted by: BChris | March 23, 2010 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Maybe every one should be an All-Star, and no one's feelings will get hurt.

Posted by: OWNTF | March 23, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Well, they should all at least get a ribbon at the end of the season.

Posted by: BChris | March 23, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

More likely - the order of selection will not be made public.

Posted by: VercengetorixII | March 23, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

dangit, delantero, stop giving away my strategies . . . gotta keep whatever competitive advantage i have

Posted by: benonthehill | March 23, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

I picked Jon Busch for my fantasy team!

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 23, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

I picked Jon Busch as my starting GK. Eat that suckas!

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 23, 2010 10:58 AM | Report abuse

Fischy's Fries. Had to cut loose McBride, when I realized I had too much high-priced talent which had left me with a bench that was too full of TFC. Looking at a sleeper choice, but right now I think I'm pretty good -- though I've got too many DCU players.

About Busch -- there seems to be an awful lot of misunderstanding about the new CBA. First off, the players did notget free agency. The league will be creating a re-entry draft for those players whose contracts have expired and aren't re-signing with their old team. That will happen after the season. Second, players like Busch -- players waived by their team were always 'free agents' once they've cleared waivers. There's a process for putting in waiver claims in the first 48 hours. Priority right now is based on last year's standings. After the 3rd week, it is revised based on current standings. If no team does out in a waiver claim, the player is free to sign with any team. At least, that was the old rules. It's possible MLS got rid of the waiver "draft", leaving Busch free to sign with anyone right now, but I doubt it.

Posted by: fischy | March 23, 2010 11:20 AM | Report abuse

I suggest people signing up for Argy Bargy Insiders fantasy league use their same Soccer Insider handles as their team name. It'll keep things clearer and it may not be too late to change your name.

Posted by: WorldCup | March 23, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

Because it's a fantasy league, I named my team "Mitts & Osborne."

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 23, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

Why would Busch stay in the US/MLS? He's good enough to catch on elsewhere, especially on a free transfer. Hell, he could suit up for Juve this weekend (comment on Juve, not Busch!).

Posted by: Godfather_of_Goals | March 23, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

"Eat that suckas!" Isn't it suckahz?

""I always thought you wanted to buy low, sell high, but you are talking about the "fee" part?""

Well, it's still buying low (b/c the players are free now), but in 2 days, they'll be high.

Posted by: delantero | March 23, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

The women will only be selecting the starting XI "pick 'em" so the remaining players will be spared the possible ignominy of being picked last.

Posted by: OWNTF | March 23, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Good idea, WorldCup.....I added my Soccer Insider handle to my team name.

Posted by: Smitty68 | March 23, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Why did we only keep two midfielders for the defensive midfield position?
------------------------------------------------------

@Demon -- not sure I see your point. A 24-man roster basically means you have a starter and a back-up at each position, plus a couple of guys who can fill in at several positions. At D-Mid, DCU has Simms and Morsink. Then, they have guys like Barklage, Najar, Wallace and McTavish, who can get shifted around as needed. Right now, the team looks heavy with wingers because it's not really clear who the right win and back-up will be.

Of course, they could just be saving a slot for Veron...

Posted by: fischy | March 23, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

@SexyOffender - so this is all your fault? Stop it then...stop it, I say!

Posted by: soccerman | March 23, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

fischy, maybe I'm not understanding the MLS rules. He can not of course just sign with another MLS team, but couldn't he sign with a team outside MLS still in the U.S.? With Crayton for example, wouldn't D.C. still hold his rights if he came back to MLS but it was OK for him to sign with the D-2 team because it's outside of MLS?

Posted by: paulp_00 | March 23, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

I'm in for the Argy Bargy Insiders fantasy league - my team is Soccerman's "Myasis Dragon." Say it slowly...

Posted by: soccerman | March 23, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

The main thing I like about the WPS ASG format is it involves only league players. The stupid "MLS vs. some out of season and out of shape foreign team in the US to get the cobwebs out" format is a joke and has to go.

Posted by: Ron16 | March 23, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

I wonder what teammates say about Busch. I know he makes some outstanding saves, but he also blames everyone else when the ball ends up in the net. Wouldn't surprise me if he were viewed as a locker room cancer but I have no direct knowledge....would be interesting to hear Brian Carroll's perspective from when they played together.

Posted by: dsheon1 | March 23, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Newport News Narwhals- I'd already created when the brilliant idea of simply using one's WaPo handle was mentioned...

Posted by: carmines757 | March 23, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

What hasn't been touched upon by anyone at DCU as KP and Kasper are patting themselves on the back for the arrival of a 2nd player this year through their youth academy is that Andrew Quinn represents a much deeper reach into DC youth program legacy.

Andrew was a member of the DCU team of youth players who went to Paris in 1999 to compete in the prestigious Dannon Cup event hosted by PSG at Parc des Princes. With Andrew in goal, DCU, coached by Dave Sarachan and communication department assistant Michael Kammarman, shut out Manchester United 1-0 in one of the matches. The team also featured a defender named Michael Bradley. Freddy Adu was invited to play, but his family advisor turned DCU down, citing his reluctance to expose him to European eyes so early.

Posted by: lgm6986 | March 23, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

what a bummer for Busch, certainly hope he catches on somewhere decent. he played for the hampton roads Mariners when i was a kid, and was always a favorite of mine.

Posted by: VTUnited | March 23, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I drank Busch beer while making up my team. Punks!

Posted by: Rand-al-Thor | March 23, 2010 12:52 PM | Report abuse

I read that they gave Najar #14. That's interesting.

Posted by: OWNTF | March 23, 2010 1:06 PM | Report abuse

@paulp -- No, you're really not understanding how this ever worked.

Examples: DC drafted Jay Needham, but couldn't sign him. The team retained his MLS rights for 2 years from the draft. Contrast that with two situations you probably know from this DC United preseason: The Fire drafted Drew Yates, but released him because they decided he wasn't as good as advertised -- and DCU picked him up (trying to decide whether to sign him). Earlier in the preseason, KC released Kurt Morsink, after he'd been with the team for 3 years. DCU picked him up and has signed him to a new deal. No compensation needed because the other teams had released the player. They forfeited their rights.

To use your example -- the only reason Louis Crayton hasn't caught on with another MLS team is he isn't very good. United chose not to re-sign him to a new contract when his old one expired last June (July?). Then, they released him from their roster. 48 hours later he was free to sign with any team, anywhere. He had a trial with KC this winter, but they cut him.

For 48 hours, any MLS team can put a waiver claim on Busch (assuming the old rules are still in place). His rights would go to whichever claiming team had the highest priority. If all teams pass on him, he's free to sign with any team afterwards.

What the new CBA promises to change is what happens after a season is over. MLS signs players to multiyear contracts. Really they have been one-year contracts (which would become guaranteed for the year on June 15 (or was it July 1st?), with options to renew jheld by the club each year. If a club chose not to renew a deal, the player was in a bit of limbo. Once the contract term expired (or wasn't renewed), players could move overseas. MLS teams could only retain rights if they made an effort to sign the player (or renew the contract if options remained) and the player refused to take the offer.

When a player was waived off a team's roster, they had to pass through waivers. If they did, they would be free to sign with any team. I'm sure that has not changed. Cutting a player cuts off the team's rights. The debate was not over what would happen to those players -- it was about what would happen to players who didn't want to take what their MLS team was offering after their contracts expired and wanted to move to another team.

Posted by: fischy | March 23, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

I read that they gave Najar #14. That's interesting.

Posted by: OWNTF | March 23, 2010 1:06 PM

dislike.

Posted by: VTUnited | March 23, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Has anyone seen Kevin Hartmann?

Posted by: Reignking | March 23, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

14 has been assigned to this kid, according to the roster on the web site. That is incredible. I'm sure Benny gave his nod to it if he had been consulted about it, but this is sheer DCU arrogance. Few have meant more to that team than he, and, sure, you don't retire the number, but you at least sit it out for a year. They did that with Marco, not even assigning it to Gomez when he was acquired midway through 2004, even though Soehn wanted to do so to purge the club of Marco's legacy (yes, I know he was an assistant then).

Posted by: lgm6986 | March 23, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Just to clarify -- The players' prior (and future) demands for free agency do not pertain to the Busch situation. However, their demands for contract guarantees might have. The players wanted contracts that were guaranteed, at least some point before the league's midseason date. Whether the players might beable to get contract guarantees priorot teh start of a season is dubious, but the Busch situation points up why the players wanted rights in line with other players around the world. All of a sudden, as the season is starting the Fire brings in a goalie from outside and cuts Busch loose. It's hard to say if he can catch on to another team, but if he clears waivers, his contract is null and void. At this late date, he won't have a lot of bargaining power. he'll probably have to take a pay cut just to sign on with a team.

Posted by: fischy | March 23, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

My younger son has a #14 away jersey. I hope Najar can live up to that.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | March 23, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

@rk -- What do you mean? Hartmann has another crazy new hairstyle?

Posted by: fischy | March 23, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Ah, Dallas picked him up. Forgot that happened before the CBA.

Posted by: Reignking | March 23, 2010 1:38 PM | Report abuse

While I guess it is possible that Busch would go to CO, I doubt it, they have Matt Pickens as the starter and just brought Ian Joyce (Not to be confused with Portland's Ian Joy) who was with Southend United and Watford as well.

Posted by: lrg1231 | March 23, 2010 1:48 PM | Report abuse

UnitedDemon:

Simms and Morsink are the guys that play there normally. Wallace and McTavish can both fill in. In MLS, having 2 specialists and a couple utility players is depth. I don't know about you, but DiRaimondo would have been my 5th choice DM behind those 4, and he isn't really able to play any other spot. Seems like an easy decision to me.

***

Are we really dumping on Najar and United because he's wearing #14? Knowing what we all know about Olsen's personality, do you think he cares at all about who wears his number next?

There's no reason to be urgently trying to find something to be unhappy about.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | March 23, 2010 2:19 PM | Report abuse

fischy, I think I'm understanding this this now. Dave van den Bergh was never officially cut, but Dallas owns his rights while Busch was actually cut from Chicago. That makes a lot more sense (well, not really, but as much as the MLS makes sense I guess). I hope Busch find a new home before the start of the season!

Posted by: paulp_00 | March 23, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

I wasn't dumping on it, Chest, just noting it. I don't think they just gave him the number without thinking about it, but I wonder what the message is supposed to be and to whom.

Posted by: OWNTF | March 23, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Andrew Dykstra is not just a VCU alum -- he played at Osbourn Park (sp?) and for the local Herndon Arsenal club team, and was in the DC United Super Y League team. So, we should all wish him well -- except when he plays against DC United!

Posted by: DCUSince96 | March 23, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

I'm in the Argy Bargy league. Boalsburg United.

Posted by: JkR- | March 23, 2010 10:04 AM
_________________________________________

Boalsburg? Isn't that where Walter Bahr lives? I suspect that a few journalists will be making the pilgrimage to Boalsburg (or at least shooting phone calls and emails that way) between now and June 12.

Posted by: universityandpark | March 23, 2010 6:04 PM | Report abuse

Boalsburg? Isn't that where Walter Bahr lives? I suspect that a few journalists will be making the pilgrimage to Boalsburg (or at least shooting phone calls and emails that way) between now and June 12.

Posted by: universityandpark | March 23, 2010 6:04 PM |
***************************
Hope you don't miss this. Not only is Boalsburg where Bahr lives, it's where Bill Jeffery lived and died. And where I grew up.

I played as a youth in the Bill Jefferey Youth Soccer league.

I'm assuming you know who he is, but if not, he was coach of the WC 1950 US team. And head coach at Penn State, as was Bahr...

Posted by: JkR- | March 23, 2010 9:13 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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