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Posted at 11:32 AM ET, 01/12/2011

D.C. United news & notes

By Steve Goff

Apologies for the slowdown this week -- juggling soccer and college basketball, planning to resume normal blog operations next week. Check my Twitter feed for periodic MLS and U.S. updates.

I'll be in Baltimore on Thursday for the MLS draft. Festivities begin at noon ET on ESPN2. Temper your enthusiasm, for only a handful of players are projected to have an immediate impact this season. Most teams are seeking prospects who might offer long-term rewards.

With the No. 3 overall pick, D.C. United is sitting in a powerful position to claim a promising player and weigh trade options. Once all coaches and general managers settle in Baltimore tonight, talks involving all sorts of draft picks and players leaguewide will intensify and carry into Thursday morning.

"We'll listen to anybody, but I think there are some players out there" in the draft pool, United Coach Ben Olsen said. "I'm not excited to give up that pick, but we'll listen."

I'll have much more on United's draft philosophy in Thursday's print edition (available online late tonight). Meantime, I can tell you that:

*MLS veteran forward Abe Thompson, who starred at W.T. Woodson High and the University of Maryland, has been offered a preseason trial. Thompson, 29, played for second-tier Miami FC last year.

*Goalkeeper Chase Harrison, who was with the club on loan late last season, is probably going to join the club for preseason training. United has also invited Alex Horwath, 23, an MLS pool goalie who spent time with Kansas City, San Jose and Seattle last year. United is seeking a third keeper to join Bill Hamid and Steve Cronin.

*Unconfirmed: Rapid Vienna inquired about DCU midfielder Branko Boskovic for a short-term loan this winter, but because of the brief MLS offseason, United turned down the proposal. Boskovic was with Rapid for 3 1/2 years before signing with United last summer.

By Steve Goff  | January 12, 2011; 11:32 AM ET
Categories:  College Soccer, D.C. United, MLS  | Tags:  D.C. United, MLS  
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Comments

Anybody watch WHU v Birmingham? It sounded like Spector played well from the reports...

Posted by: glfrazier | January 12, 2011 11:50 AM | Report abuse

I would love to see Abe play for DCU. They need all the scoring help they can get. He was tremendous at WTW and Maryland.

Posted by: CardCat | January 12, 2011 11:55 AM | Report abuse

heard he had an assist and a possible 2nd assist.

Posted by: TheWashDipsSince88 | January 12, 2011 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Does any of the potential draftees have a filthy rich parent who would build a stadium?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | January 12, 2011 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Does any of the potential draftees have a filthy rich parent who would build a stadium?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | January 12, 2011 12:01 PM

well we know one of them has a filthy rich brother...

Posted by: VTUnited | January 12, 2011 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Does any of the potential draftees have a filthy rich parent who would build a stadium?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | January 12, 2011 12:01 PM

well we know one of them has a filthy rich brother...

Posted by: VTUnited | January 12, 2011 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Y'know, someday when Sepp is no longer around to entertain us with his idiocy, we'll still have Platini.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | January 12, 2011 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I am no expert, but I don't agree with Goff's comment:

"Temper your enthusiasm, for only a handful of players are projected to have an immediate impact this season."

There are three 3-4 Akron players (Sarkodie, Kitchen, Ampaipitakwong,and Nagbe), a few forwards of forwards (Bruin, Herzog, Meram), and a five or six defenders (Tettah, Anibaba, Soares, Boxall, Warshaw, and Cruz) that could play immediately (at least for DCU). Also there are two foreign players that were invited to the combine (Plato and Rooney) that have been pretty good.

That is about 14 players I think will make an impact this year.

Posted by: no_recess | January 12, 2011 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Plato?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79vdlEcWxvM

I'd rather have the Greek's #11 shirt, Archimedes.

Posted by: Ron16 | January 12, 2011 1:49 PM | Report abuse

"You reek!" exclained Mrs. Archimedes after her husband returned from playing soccer one summer afternoon.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | January 12, 2011 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Sorry Plata.

Posted by: no_recess | January 12, 2011 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Ahhhh, 270 . . . well played.

Posted by: stevie_in_gp | January 12, 2011 3:17 PM | Report abuse

no_recess, playing for a side as awful as DC United does not necessarily equate to "having an impact".

See Boscovic, B; Quaranta, S; Alsopp, Hernandez, Pena, et al etc. etc. etc.

Posted by: Ron16 | January 12, 2011 4:16 PM | Report abuse

WOW! thanks for pulling down that picture of Troy letting a goal go by.

Posted by: dculoyal | January 12, 2011 4:23 PM | Report abuse

There are other clubs in MLS that have about as much talent as DCU. Chivas, Vancouver, and Portland come to mind. All I am saying is that I have not read anything from other blogs or experts that feel the same way about this draft as Goff and no I am not trying to call him out. I just disagree with his opinion and just because he is well informed does not make him infallible.

Posted by: no_recess | January 12, 2011 7:41 PM | Report abuse

@Ron 16

Oh by the way Allsop, Hernandez, and Pena are not part of DCU anymore.

Posted by: no_recess | January 12, 2011 7:43 PM | Report abuse

Steve's draft article.

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | January 12, 2011 9:07 PM | Report abuse

@norecess: exactly my point. They played for DCU, and they had no impact. Playing for DCU and "making an impact" are not one and the same. Just because several potential draftees are as good or better than most of the players we have now, does not mean they are impact players. That is how bad we really are.

Posted by: Ron16 | January 12, 2011 9:25 PM | Report abuse

Nice article Goff.

Posted by: Curious99 | January 13, 2011 12:03 AM | Report abuse

65 days until United's first 2011 league match!

Posted by: Curious99 | January 13, 2011 12:05 AM | Report abuse

@Ron16

Actually they did have an impact as I recall Allsop did score goals, Pena started some matches, and Boskovic also started. I guess we should start off with what defines making an impact, but I don't want to get into it with you in a long drawn out debate over nothing. If you want to stick by Goff and every opinion that he has go ahead. You should change your handle to Goffs_Crowny or I_Sweat_Goff.

Posted by: no_recess | January 13, 2011 8:08 AM | Report abuse

@Ron16

People like you sweat Goff and his opinion too much. Seriously think about the impact of rookies for a second. Did you ever notice about Zakuani's impact for Seattle his rookie year? Now there is Nagbe who many believe is better than Zakuani. So are you telling that is not impact? Also several players in this draft are part of the US-under20 side that many believe is one of the more talented squads we have had recently. Also think about Salgado for a minute. Do you think if he was not a talented player that Chivas Guadulajara would have had him on their youth team? I think that you have overrated Goff's opinion on this topic (a draft that he has not covered very well). No doubt Goff knows his stuff very well, but I think he is wrong on this one.

Posted by: no_recess | January 13, 2011 8:24 AM | Report abuse

Nice article Goff.

Posted by: Curious99 | January 13, 2011 12:03 AM
________________________________________

Did you say so in the comments section on that article? From the paucity of comments posted, you'd think that hardly anyone ever reads anything Goff files for the print edition.

Posted by: universityandpark | January 13, 2011 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Interestingly, Ridge Mahoney of Soccer America predicts that United will take Victor Estupinan, a non-college player, after the expansion clubs nab Nagbe and Kitchen.

Posted by: universityandpark | January 13, 2011 9:53 AM | Report abuse

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