Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Mravec and Teammates Walk Out on Seattle Impact - Former SKC Wizards Update

For those that haven't been following my Twitter feed, you've missed a lot of news regarding indoor soccer, specifically the Seattle Impact, an expansion team in the new MASL, which the Missouri Comets are also part of. The TL;DR version of the story is basically that their owner, Dion Earl is a part of a lawsuit against him, the team, and the league for sexual assault. Really the story as a whole is like bad TV, if you haven't read up on it, just read this interview he did with Deadspin, it's just crazy.

Anyway, I bring that up, because former KC draft pick Michal Mravec had signed to play with the Impact this season. His stint with the Impact though lasted just one game as he and 22 teammates walked out on the club because of Earl's conduct. Earl referred to it as a "mutiny." The Impact found more players that have allowed them to continue playing at this time.

In other indoor soccer news, one former player has replaced another on the roster for the St. Louis Ambush. For the second year in a row, Jamar Beasley is out in St. Louis. This year he at least played one game for the Ambush before leaving. Replacing him on the Ambush roster is KC's 2014 second round pick, Adnan Gabeljic. Gabeljic had been without a club since being waived by the OKC Energy.

Here's the rest of this week's update.

Active without a club or unknown
Vicente Arze
Jamar Beasley
Federico Bessone
Jose Burciaga
Toni Dovale
Edson Elcock
Andy Gruenebaum
Mechack Jerome
Peterson Joseph
Neal Kitson
Eric Kronberg
Michal Mravec
Nelson Pizarro
Akeem Priestly
Scott Sealy
Ivan Trujillo
Konrad Warzycha
Sal Zizzo

MLS
Davy Arnaud - DC - Offseason.
Teal Bunbury - New England - Started and played 90 minutes, recording a goal and an assist in New England's 2-1 win over New York.
Bobby Convey - New York - Did not dress in New York's 2-1 loss to New England.
Luis Gil - Salt Lake - Offseason.
Michael Harrington - Portland - Offseason.
Jack Jewsbury - Portland - Offseason.
Eddie Johnson - DC - Offseason.
Kei Kamara - Columbus - Offseason.
Chris Konopka - Toronto - Offseason.
Rauwshan McKenzie - Portland - Offseason.
Khari Stephenson - San Jose - Offseason.
Tyson Wahl - Columbus - Offseason.

NASL
Stefan Antonijevic - Fort Lauderdale - Offseason.
Alex Martinez - Carolina - Offseason.

USL
Brian Fekete - Pittsburgh - Offseason.
Cyprian Hedrick - Oklahoma City - Offseason.
Jonathan Leathers - Charlotte - Offseason.
Kyle Miller - Oklahoma City - Offseason.
Michael Thomas - Oklahoma City - Offseason.
Yomby William - Richmond - Offseason.
John Wilson - Charleston - Offseason.

Indoor
Jamar Beasley - St. Louis - Did not play in St. Louis' 8-7 win over Chicago. Waived by St. Louis.
Adnan Gabeljic - St. Louis - Just signed with St. Louis.
Pat Healey - Baltimore - Played in Baltimore's 27-0 win over Harrisburg.
Boris Pardo - Wichita - Started in Wichita's 13-3 loss to Missouri. Started in Wichita's 3-2 OT loss to Dallas.

International
Korede Aiyegbusi - Auerbach - Germany - Started and played 90 minutes in Auerbach's 2-0 loss to Plauen.
Scott Angevine - Vasa - Finland - Offseason.
Omar Bravo - Chivas - Mexico - Started and played 90 minutes, scoring two goals in Chivas' 2-1 win over Morelia.
Mitchell Cardenas - Atlético Coatzacoalcos - Mexico - No game this week.
Sunil Chhetri - Bengaluru - India - Offseason.
Eloy Colombano - AD Berazategui - Argentina - No game this week.
Daneil Cyrus - Ha Noi T&T (W Connection) - Vietnam (Trinidad) - Offseason.
Pablo Escobar - Cúcuta Deportivo - Colombia - Started and played 90 minutes in Cucuta's 2-0 loss to Jaguares. Started and played 56 minutes before being red carded in Cucuta's 2-1 win over Atletico Bucaramanga.
Roger Espinoza - Wigan - England - Started and played 70 minutes in Wigan's 1-1 draw with Middlesbrough.
Herculez Gomez - Tigres - Mexico - Came off the bench and played 8 minutes in Tigres' 2-1 win over Toluca.
Jermaine Hue - Harbour View - Jamaica - Offseason.
Jeferson - América RN - Brazil - Did not play in America's 1-0 win over Nautico.
Will John - Maghreb Fes - Morocco - Tied Raja Casablanca 1-1.
Igor Kostrov - Veris - Moldova - Defeated Academia 3-0.
Carlos Marinelli - Universidad San Martin - Peru - Came off the bench and played 17 minutes in San Martin's 1-0 loss to Cesar Vallejo. Came off the bench and played 16 minutes in San Martin's 1-1 draw with Juan Aurich.
Neven Markovic - Servette FC - Switzerland - Started and played 62 minutes in Servete's 1-1 draw with FC Schaffhausen.
Yura Movsisyan - Spartak Moscow - Russia - Started and played 88 minutes, recording an assist in Spartak's 4-2 win over Mordovia Saransk.
Lawrence Olum - Kedah FA - Malaysia - Just signed for the club.
Pablo Punyed - Stjarnan - Iceland - Offseason.
Oriol Rosell - Sporting Club de Portugal - Portugal - Started and played 90 minutes in Sporting's 5-0 win over Espinho. Did not dress in Sporting's 3-1 win over Maribor in the Champions League.
Yann Songo'o - Blackburn - England - Did not dress in Blackburn's 2-1 win over Leeds.
Milos Stojcev - FK Sarajevo - Bosnia - Started and played 90 minutes in Sarajevo's 2-0 win over Sloboda Tuzla.
Matt Taylor - Saarbrücken - Germany - Started and played 89 minutes in Saarbrucken's 1-0 win over Homburg.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Three Academy Graduates Still Alive in College Cup

The NCAA tournament first two rounds have completed and heading into this weekend, three graduates from the Sporting KC academy are still alive. Eric DeJulio and Creighton received a first round bye and then beat Oregon State 1-0 to advance to the next round. They will host Xavier in Omaha this coming weekend. The other two still alive, Zach Wright and Andy Lopez both at North Carolina. Lopez has not played this season for UNC, while Wright came on as a substitute and recorded an assist in UNC's 6-0 win over James Madison. Wright didn't play in UNC's 2-1 win over Charlotte. The Tar Heels will now play Clemson in the next round.

Class of 2010

Brandon Fricke (Butler University) - D - RSr - Season over.

Class of 2011

Eric Hymer (Fort Hays State) - D - Sr - Started in Fort Hays 1-1 (3-2) shootout win over Northeastern State. Started in Fort Hays 3-2 loss to Quincy.

Raymond Lee (Saint Louis University) - MF - Sr - Started in Saint Louis' 2-0 win over Tulsa. Started in Saint Louis' 2-1 loss to Louisville.

Eric Moore (Rockhurst University) - D - Sr - Season over.

Michael Oakley (University of Missouri Kansas City) - D - Sr - Season over.

Paul Oliver (California Baptist) - D/MF - Sr - Season over.

Jordan Rideout (University of Missouri Kansas City) - F - Sr - Season over.

Taylor Vinnage (Benedictine) - GK - Sr - Season over.

Class of 2012

Andrew Brown (Bradley University) - MF - Jr - Season over.

Eric DeJulio (Creighton University) - D - Jr - Started in Creighton's 1-0 win over Oregon State.

Daniel Hare (Loyola University in Chicago) - D - Jr - Season over.

Andrew Lightner (Dayton) - D - RSo - Season over.

Andrew Miller (Baker University) - D - Jr - Started in Baker's 4-1 loss to Rio Grande.

Nate Opperman (University of Evansville) - F - Jr - Season over.

Derek Schrick (University of Missouri Kansas City) - MF - Jr - Season over.

Chris Tuso (Baker) - MF - Jr - Did not play in Baker's 4-1 loss to Rio Grande.

Shane Woods (Drury University) - F - Jr - Season over.

Class of 2013

Joe Amico (Jacksonville) - D - So - Season over.

Chris Arce (Neosho CC) - MF - So - Season over.

Matt Bernard (Drake) - MF - RFr - Season over.

Paul Dean (Rockhurst University) - D - So - Season over.

Seo-In Kim (Duke) - MF - So - Season over.

Adam Lightner (Northern Illinois University) - D - So - Season over.

Clay Stewart - (University of Missouri Kansas City) - MF/D - So - Season over.

Wes White (University of Missouri Kansas City) - F - RFr - Season over.

Austin Wilcox (University of Missouri Kansas City) - MF - So - Season over.

Drew Wilson (Fort Hays State University) - D - So - Started in Fort Hays 1-1 (3-2) shootout win over Northeastern State. Started in Fort Hays 3-2 loss to Quincy.

Kyle Vassar - (University of Missouri Kansas City) - D - RFr - Season over.

Class of 2014

Darby Cronin (University of Missouri Kansas City)- MF - Fr - Season over.

Andrew Dittemore (Missouri State) - GK - Fr - Season over.

Andy Ericks (Colorado School of Mines) - MF - Fr - Season over.

Heath Honold (Wake Forest) - F - Fr - Did not play in Wake's 0-0 (3-2) shootout loss to UMBC.

Mason Leonard (Drake) - D - Fr - Season over.

Blake Levine (Baker) - F - Fr - Came on as a substitute and scored a goal in Baker's 4-1 loss to Rio Grande.

Matthew Lewis (Fordham) - D - Fr - Started in Fordham's 2-1 loss to Dartmouth.

Andy Lopez (North Carolina) - MF - Fr - Did not play in either of UNC's games.

Noah Mudd (Trevecca) - D - Fr - Season over.

Joey Piatczyc (West Virginia) - MF - Fr - Season over.

Cole Stevenson (Denver) - F - Fr - Did not play in Denver's 1-0 loss to Oregon State.

Austin Williamson (Northeastern State University) - GK - Fr - Did not play in Northeastern State's 1-1 (3-2) shootout loss to Fort Hays State.

Zach Wright (North Carolina) - F - Fr - Came on as a substitute and had an assist in North Carolina's 6-0 win over James Madison. Did not play in North Carolina's 2-1 win over Charlotte.

Sporting KC a Number of Roster Moves

Sporting Kansas City made their first set of offseason moves today, declining options on six players, announcing four others out of contract, and mutually terminating the contract of Lawrence Olum.

The termination of Olum's contract paves the way for his move to Malaysia that came out yesterday. The move will allow Sporting to retain the Kenyan's MLS rights should he return to MLS.
Of the four players out of contract that Sporting is extending offers to, Aurelien Collin was already known. He's joined by the team's second homegrown player, Kevin Ellis, and forwards Jacob Peterson and Soony Saad. 

Collin's contract discussions have already been well documented. He's looking for a pay increase, and with his center back partner, Matt Besler, signing a Designated Player contract during the season, you can bet that Collin is looking for something similar or at least a max. salary. That's something that I'm not sure that KC is going to give to Collin. Unless the new CBA is going to bump the salary cap a lot, I can't see KC using that much cap on their two starting central defenders.

Kevin Elllis had a break out year for Kansas City. With all the injuries and call ups along the back line, Ellis played all four of the defensive positions along the back line, partnering Matt Besler, Collin, Erik Palmer-Brown, Chance Myers, and probably others I'm forgetting. A bump in salary for him would either see him moved to the senior roster year, or take KC's other HGP slot above the minimum. With his play this year, he deserves the bump.

Jacob Peterson was another player who saw play all over the field for KC this year due to injuries. While Peterson has the work ethic that Peter Vermes loves, he plays a position (wing forward) that KC desperately needs to upgrade this season. Peterson though did prove himself to be capable as a fill in as a wing back for KC. At this point I wonder if that may not be the position he'd fill for KC. He'd still be able to get forward in KC's system, but he'd open up the wing position for a winger who can provide more offensively. If the price is right I'd like to keep him around.

Saad saw a drop in playing time this year for KC, playing over 400 fewer minutes than he did last year. He has plenty of talent, but I don't think he fits that well in Vermes' system. I like him, I think he can be a good forward in this league, but he's struggled out on the wing for KC, and with Dom Dwyer in the middle he's not going to get much time there. Development in his wing play is certainly something that needs to improve, but I'm in no way against keeping Saad around.

All four players have received bona fide offers, so the team will retain their rights, should they make it through the expansion draft without being taken.

For the six players who didn't have their options picked up, most are not surprising at all. Probably the most surprising would be Toni Dovale, who had looked dangerous at times on the wing for KC. But at $180,000 per the players union numbers, he did not produce enough for Vermes to want to keep the Spaniard around.

Sporting will also be in the market for goalkeepers this weekend as both Eric Kronberg and Andy Gruenebaum had their options declined. Kronberg came into the season as the starter, but never really looked comfortable in there. His time was marred by some poor decision making, most famously in the playoff loss to New York when he hesitated coming off his line and Bradley Wright-Phillips scored the winner late. As for Gruenebaum, he did okay for Kansas City when he started in place of Kronberg, but his issue was the fact that he just couldn't stay healthy. Three different times this past season Gruenebaum missed time due to injuries.

Sal Zizzo is probably a more disappointing loss for his work off the field on the Benny Feilhaber Show. Which is probably the reason his option wasn't picked up. Zizzo played in 19 games for KC, and only recorded three assists. None since a 2-2 draw with Toronto in May, although he did have a goal in the CCL late in the season. I had figured with all the defensive injuries that Vermes would try Zizzo in one of the wingback positions, as he'd played there with the Portland Timbers before coming to KC, but he never did.

The last two players are the least surprising of the moves. Victor Munoz and Michael Kafari made a combined one competitive appearance for Kansas City. Munoz started Kansas City's US Open Cup win over Minnesota, but left after about 30 minutes with an injury (and looked incredibly poor up to that point). Both played in the second half of KC's loss to Manchester City in a friendly during the season though.

Kronberg, Gruenebaum, and Zizzo will all go into the re-entry draft in mid-December (1st stage December 12, 2nd stage December 18). Kafari and Munoz will be available in the waiver draft on December 10th. Dovale will apparently not be available in either and has his out-right release.

While those six are gone, and look unlikely to be re-signed, KC did pick up the options of five others, keeping Jon Kempin, CJ Sapong, Ike Opara, Dom Dwyer, and Seth Sinovic with KC, at least into the expansion draft.

With these moves it certainly appears that KC is set for a busy offseason.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Olum Looks Headed to Malaysia

Looks like the Sporting KC roster turnover that many were expecting has started. A licensed FIFA player agent, Arvind Narayan, announced today on Twitter that he had helped to close a deal between Sporting KC and Kedah FA in the Malaysian league for Sporting KC midfielder, Lawrence Olum. The Tweet has since been deleted, but I did get a screen shot of it.
The Kenyan had become a starter for Sporting KC this past season in the team's deep lying midfield role after the sale of Oriol Rosell to Sporting Portugal in Lisbon. Olum did okay in the position, but the drop in talent level was apparent. KC struggled with distribution with Olum sitting in the deep role. Used to Rosell being there to start the attack and string passes together, KC was forced to have Benny Feilhaber drop further back on the field to play the distribution role. This took Feilhaber out of the attack more, limiting the influence that he'd had in the early part of the season when Rosell was there.
Late in the season, Olum split time with Honduran, Jorge Claros, until Claros was suspended for three games, that combined with national team call ups was the rest of the regular season. His last appearance for the club came in the regular season finale against the New York Red Bulls, when he was subbed after 30 minutes in favor of Mikey Lopez.
Since signing with Kansas City in the middle of the 2011 season, Olum appeared in 67 games for KC, 40 of those starts. Over half those starts (21) came in the 2014 season. He also scored three goals for KC in his time here, including the one in the 2013 regular season finale against Philadelphia that allowed Kansas City to host MLS Cup 2013 against Real Salt Lake. The 30 year old also made his debut for his national team this year, playing for Kenya in their unsuccessful attempt to qualify for the 2015 African Cup of Nations.
While the move hasn't been announced by the team, Olum does appear in photographs on his new team's Facebook page. So this move seems to be happening. It'll be a bit of a blow for Kansas City's depth, but the position on the field I think is one that most KC fans would say needed to be upgraded from the 2014 season.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

End of Season Stats

Here are some stats from the 2014 Sporting KC season for you.

In all competitions over the last two years, including national team action, Matt Besler played 7,281 the most in any two year span for an Kansas City player.

In terms of just minutes for Sporting KC, Seth Sinovic also set a team record over the last two years, playing 7,208 in all competitions in the 2013 and 2014 seasons.

KC was 6-5-6 in league play at home this year. The six league wins at home are the fewest since 2009 when KC won just four games at home.

The 21 goals conceded at home in league play was the most conceded at home since conceding 24 in 2006. The 25 in all competitions is the most since conceding 25 in 2006.

KC was 8-8-1 in league play on the road this year. The one away draw is the fewest in KC history.

KC was 8-11-2 in all competitions away from home, that's the most road losses since they lost 11 in 2006.

The 26 goals scored on the road in all competitions is the most since the team scored 30 in all competitions on the road in 2005.

The 30 goals conceded on the road in all competitions is the most since they conceded 31 in 2007.

Sporting conceded 55 goals in all competitions this year, that's the most conceded in one season since conceding 68 in 2002.

Dom Dwyer's 7 PK goals is the most in a single season since Preki scored 7 in 1996 (both were 7 of 8 from the spot in league play).

Dwyer also set team records for goals in a season in league play (22) and in all competitions (24).

Toni Dovale set a club record for international goals in a season with 3.

Bradley Wright-Phillips scored six goals against KC in all competitions this year. That's a club record for a single player. The previous record had been 5, held by seven players.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Comets Cruise Past Wichita

The Missouri Comets remained perfect on the season, taking care of business against the Wichita B-52s, winning 13-3 against their Central Conference rival. The Comets started the game with a ton of early pressure against an undermanned Wichita side. The B-52s defense held strong in the early going of the game. But just after the half-way point, the Comets finally got the lead. Leo Gibson fired in a shot from the corner that hit off B-52s goalkeeper Boris Pardo and the wall and into the path of Alain Matingou who knocked the ball home to give the Comets the 1-0 lead. A minute later the Comets doubled the lead. Missouri was holding possession around the yellow line where John Sosa played the ball to Brian Harris who took a touch and fired a bullet into the far corner to double Missouri's lead.

The second quarter saw the Comets continue to dominate possession and limit the B-52s chances. Just over a minute into the quarter the Comets added on another goal. Andre Braithwaite did a nice job winning the ball and got into the box. Braithwaite touched the ball past Pardo, but before he could get there to touch it home, Coady Andrews came rushing in and knocked it into the net to make it 3-0. Less than a minute later the Comets made it 4-0. Matingou intercepted the ball near midfield and played it into the corner for Max Touloute. Touloute took a touch and slammed it inside the far post. The Comets domination continued and just over five minutes in they caught the B-52s on the break. Touloute led the break, getting into the middle of the field with Gibson to his right and Bryan Perez to his left. Touloute picked out Gibson who immediately fired the ball across the box to Perez who had the simplest of tap ins to make it 5-0. Around the midpoint of the half, the Comets found themselves killing a power play as Stefan Stokic got called for an illegal slide tackle. The power play didn't matter though as they were able to string shorthanded. After some pressure, the Comets cleared the ball high into the air near midfield. Touloute beat his man to the ball, winning a header and racing in 1 on 1 with Pardo. Touloute beat him to the far post for his second of the night to make it 6-0. With just over a minute left in the quarter, the B-52s finally got on the board as Daniel Sack won the ball after a poor clearance by the Comets. Sack fired home to make it 6-1 heading into the half time break.

The B52s came out for the third quarter and looked ready to make a game of it. After having just three shots on goal in the first two quarters, they had three in the first couple minutes of the third quarter. The Comets weathered the pressure though, keeping the B-52s on their on goal. Danny Waltman played the ball up to Harris who raced up the field from midfield before cutting inside his man and firing a shot that beat Pardo to the near corner to make it 7-1. The B-52s continued to pressure, but were unable to find shots let alone goals. With less than five minutes left in the quarter, the Comets added another. Sosa deflected a clearance into the Wichita box. Perez beat Pardo to the ball, knocking it just over him. Perez had another easy tap in to make it 8-1. A minute later, Harris finished off his hattrick. After receiving the ball near the yellow line, Harris knocked the ball into the corner for Braithwaite. Harris followed the play though and got to the ball first, knocking it past Pardo to make it 9-1 after three quarters.

The fourth quarter came alive with more scoring from both teams. The B-52s got things going three and a half minutes in as Brady Bryant picked off a poor restart by the Comets and beat Waltman to the far post to make it 9-2. The Comets responded quickly though to restore their eight goal lead as Harris got his fourth goal of the night. He won the ball just inside the B-52s end with a nice slide tackle. Harris kept the ball, got inside the yellow line and fired a shot into the far upper corner for his fourth of the night, acting like a man on a mission. Less than a minute later though the B-52s had their third. After some poor communication in the box Andrews attempted to clear the ball near his own line, but it hit off of Travis Pittman and into the net. All three goals the B-52s scored on the night were due to poor communication and passing by the Comets, something that they'll need to get cleared up going forward. The Comets though went back to doing their business and put the B-52s back on their heals. Just over seven minutes in, The Comets were again up by eight. Robert Palmer got by his defender in the corner and knocked it to the far post where Gibson was there for the tap in to make it 11-3. Two minutes later the Comets were up by nine. Kiel Williams won the ball in the corner, knocking it into the middle for Braithwaite, who knocked he ball past Pardo as he fell down to make it 12-3. The Comets kept possession much of the rest of the way, just killing the game off. With under a minute left, Gibson turned his defender in the box and looked to be 1 on 1 with Pardo, but Kevin Ten Eyck pulled down the Comets leading scorer and earned himself a blue card and a penalty shot for the Comets. Gibson stepped up to take the kick, dribbled down and stalled his run, waiting for Pardo to commit. When he went down, Gibson chipped it over him to make it 13-3.

Overall a very strong performance from the Comets as they took down another former PASL team with a big win. They did it this time without a lot of help from their leading scorers, Gibson and Assadpour, who had just one assist combined until Gibson's goal made it 11-3 half way through the fourth quarter. Harris was a monster tonight, scoring four and being all over the field, even after getting knocked into the boards by former Comet, Byron Alvarez. They'll now head to Harrisburg for their lone multi-point scoring game against the Heat next Saturday the 29th.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Expansion Draft Rules Released and an Explanation

Today, MLS released the rules for this year's expansion draft that will occur after MLS Cup on December 10th. The draft will see both New York City FC and Orlando City SC select 10 players from the existing 18 other teams in the league. Since MLS rules are just a bit cumbersome and at times difficult to understand, I'll try to break down some of the rules that may be difficult to understand.

• MLS clubs may protect 11 players between their Senior Roster and their Supplemental Roster.  If the player’s contract expires at the end of 2014, he will still be considered part of the club’s roster.

The first part is fairly straight forward, Sporting KC and all other teams will be allowed to protect 11 players on the team currently. The Senior Roster vs. Supplemental Roster is where we get some confusion. So I'll try to explain that.

MLS rosters are allowed to have 30 players on them. Spots 1 through 20 on the roster are deemed "Senior Roster" spots. What this means is that those 18-20 players (spots 19 and 20 do not need to be filled) count against the club's salary budget.

The Supplemental roster are spots 21-30 on the roster. These players’ salaries do not count against the salary budget. Generation Adidas players fall into this category (more on them later). Depending on their spot on the roster their minimum salary is either $48,500 (21-24) or $36,500 (25-30). The team can also have two home grown players making over the minimum amount factor in here, similar to a Generation Adidas player.

The league does not publish a list of which players are senior roster and which are supplemental, but using the MLS players union salaries and roster you can make a good guess.

For example, with KC Matt Besler, Claudio Bieler, Jorge Claros, Aurelien Collin, Toni Dovale, Dom Dwyer, Benny Feilhaber, Andy Gruenebaum, Eric Kronberg, Chance Myers, Paulo Nagamura, Lawrence Olum, Ike Opara, Jacob Peterson, Soony Saad, CJ Sapong, Seth Sinovic, Martin Steuble, Sal Zizzo, and Graham Zusi are likely taking spots 1-20 on the roster. Meanwhile, Christian Duke, Kevin Ellis (HGP), Igor Juliao, Michael Kafari, Jon Kempin (HGP), Mikey Lopez (GA), Jimmy Medranda, Victor Munoz, and Erik Palmer-Brown (HGP) are likely filling the supplemental roster spots.

The last part of the first rule is important as it pertains to Collin. With him out of contract, Sporting will need to choose whether to expose him and take their chances, or protect him and keep his MLS rights should he leave.

• If a club protects a player, it is not obligated to exercise the player’s option. It may renegotiate subject to terms of the CBA.

Fairly straight forward, if there's a player that is in an option year and KC protects them, KC does not have to pick up said player's option.

• If a player retires, he will not be a part of the club’s roster, but his club will lose its right of first refusal to him should he ultimately decide to play.
Again straight forward and a rule that shouldn't affect KC this year.

• Players on a club’s Supplemental Roster, other than Generation Adidas players who have not been graduated at the end of the 2014 MLS season or Homegrown Players on a club’s Supplemental Roster, will be part of the expansion draft.

• Generation Adidas players who have not been graduated at the end of the 2014 MLS season and Homegrown Players on a club’s Supplemental Roster at the end of the 2014 MLS season are automatically protected (clubs do not have to use a protected slot on them).

Combining these two rules. What that means is that the supplemental players I listed above, Christian Duke, Igor Juliao, Michael Kafari,, Jimmy Medranda, and Victor Munoz are all available for selection. KC's home grown players, Kevin Ellis, Jon Kempin, and Erik Palmer-Brown will all be protected automatically. The team's Generation Adidas player, Mikey Lopez may or may not be protected automatically. This depends on if the league graduates him from the program (which will occur before the draft).


• If NYCFC or Orlando City SC selects a Supplemental Roster Player, it must offer him a Senior Roster position and he must remain on the Senior Roster as of Roster Compliance Date.

Basically it's a bump in status, and potentially a bump in salary if a player from a team's Supplemental Roster is taken.

• Clubs are restricted in the number of International Player(s) that they may make available. Clubs may make available a number of International Players equal to their total number of International Players minus three, provided that if a club has three or fewer International Players it may make available not more than one.

This is one of the more confusing rules I've seen when talking with people about the draft. First the wording of it sucks. Why not just say you must protect at least 3 unless you have less than 4 in which case you can only make available 1 international available in the draft. For Kansas City they have 6 (possibly 7) internationals: Claudio Bieler, Jorge Claros, Toni Dovale, Igor Juliao, Jimmy Medranda, and Martin Steuble (possibly Victor Munoz as well I'm not positive of his status), so they must protect three of those players. Players like Aurelien Collin, Dom Dwyer, and Paulo Nagamura have their green card and do not count as internationals on the roster.

• For purposes of this expansion process, any non-domestic U.S. players will count as an International.

This refers back to my point about green cards in the previous rule. Initially reading this rule I was worried that this had changed. Reviewing prior year's rules for the expansion draft though, this has remained on the books so Collin, Dwyer, etc, don't fall into the internationals category.

• Designated Players are NOT automatically protected (i.e., clubs must choose whether to protect such players and if such player is not protected, he will be available for selection in the Expansion Draft). However, if the Designated Player has a no-trade clause in his contract, then his MLS club must protect him and he will count as one of the 11 players who may be protected.

This means that Sporting KC will have to choose if they are going to protect Claudio Bieler and Graham Zusi, both designated players for KC, they will not be automatically protected. It also means that because Matt Besler has a no trade clause in his new Designated Player deal, that he will fill one of Kansas City's 11 protected spots.

• Once two players have been claimed from a team’s non-protected roster, that team is eliminated from the expansion draft and may not lose any further players. In addition, once a player has been claimed from a club’s non-protected roster, that club may move a player from its non-protected roster to its protected roster.

The maximum number of players that Kansas City can lose is 2. If Orlando and New York take a KC player with the first and second picks of the draft, Kansas City's day is done. What it also means is that if KC has a player taken, they can protect another. For example, KC could expose both Eric Kronberg and Andy Gruenebaum and not worry about losing both. If one of them gets taken, KC could turn right around and immediately protect the other one to avoid losing him as well.

• Right to Negotiate: NYCFC and Orlando City SC will have the right to renegotiate a draft player’s salary (either up or down) without having to place such player on waivers or giving his previous club a right of first refusal.


This means that if, for example, Orlando drafts Paulo Nagamura and his big salary, OCSC would have the ability to attempt to renegotiate with the player to try to get them at a lower price. This is something that Kansas City will have to keep in mind when looking at players that they will protect, because now just throwing out high priced players could come back to hurt.

This rule is also something that will be interesting to watch, because if a player doesn't come to terms with OCSC or NYCFC, that club still holds their MLS rights (similar to what happened with Herculez Gomez and Kevin Hartman). In a year that the CBA expires between the league and players union, this could be an interesting wrinkle in the proceeds for the draft.

Nielsen Signs Extension with OKC - Former SKC Wizards Update

Last week it was the OKC Energy re-signing former Sporting players. This week, it's extending the contract of their coach. Jimmy Nielsen, former Sporting KC captain, signed a three year extension to his contract with the OKC Energy. The Energy finished 10th in the USL-Pro in their first season with a 9-14-5 record, Nielsen's first as a head coach.

In other news this week, Mechack Jerome helped Haiti qualify for the 2015 Gold Cup as they finished runners up in their group at the Caribbean Cup. In the third place game, Jerome scored the opener as Haiti defeated Cuba 2-1.

Here's the rest of this week's update.

Active without a club or unknown
Vicente Arze
Federico Bessone
Jose Burciaga
Julio Cesar
Edson Elcock
Adnan Gabeljic
Mechack Jerome
Peterson Joseph
Neal Kitson
Nelson Pizarro
Akeem Priestly
Peter Schmetz
Scott Sealy
Konrad Warzycha

MLS
Davy Arnaud - DC - Offseason.
Teal Bunbury - New England - No game this week.
Bobby Convey - New York - No game this week.
Luis Gil - Salt Lake - Offseason.
Michael Harrington - Portland - Offseason.
Jack Jewsbury - Portland - Offseason.
Eddie Johnson - DC - Offseason.
Kei Kamara - Columbus - Offseason.
Chris Konopka - Toronto - Offseason.
Rauwshan McKenzie - Portland - Offseason.
Khari Stephenson - San Jose - Offseason.
Tyson Wahl - Columbus - Offseason.

NASL
Stefan Antonijevic - Fort Lauderdale - Started and played 77 minutes in Fort Lauderdale's 2-1 loss to San Antonio.
Alex Martinez - Carolina - Offseason.

USL
Brian Fekete - Pittsburgh - Offseason.
Cyprian Hedrick - Oklahoma City - Offseason.
Jonathan Leathers - Charlotte - Offseason.
Kyle Miller - Oklahoma City - Offseason.
Michael Thomas - Oklahoma City - Offseason.
Yomby William - Richmond - Offseason.
John Wilson - Charleston - Offseason.

Indoor
Jamar Beasley - St. Louis - Played in St. Louis' 8-3 loss to Chicago.
Pat Healey - Baltimore - Played in Baltimore's 26-0 win over Detroit.
Michal Mravec - Seattle - Did not play in Seattle's 11-5 loss to Turlock. Did not play in Seattle's 12-8 win over Sacramento.
Boris Pardo - Wichita - Did not play in Wichita's 10-9 shootout loss to Texas.

International
Korede Aiyegbusi - Auerbach - Germany - No game this week.
Scott Angevine - Vasa - Finland - Offseason.
Omar Bravo - Chivas - Mexico - No game this week.
Mitchell Cardenas - Atlético Coatzacoalcos - Mexico - Defeated Atletico Chiapas 2-1.
Sunil Chhetri - Bengaluru - India - Offseason.
Eloy Colombano - AD Berazategui - Argentina - Lost 2-0 to JJ Urquiza.
Daneil Cyrus - Ha Noi T&T (W Connection) - Vietnam (Trinidad) - Offseason.
Pablo Escobar - Cúcuta Deportivo - Colombia - Started and played 90 minutes in Cucuta's 3-2 win over Jaguares de Cordoba.
Roger Espinoza - Wigan - England - No game this week.
Herculez Gomez - Tigres - Mexico - No game this week.
Jermaine Hue - Harbour View - Jamaica - Offseason.
Jeferson - América RN - Brazil - Did not play in either of America's games.
Mechack Jerome - Haiti - Started and played 90 minutes in Haiti's 2-2 draw with Antigua. Came off the bench and played 18 minutes in Haiti's 3-0 win over Martinique. Started and played 90 minutes in Haiti's 2-1 loss to Jamaica. Started and played 90 minutes, scoring a goal in Haiti's 2-1 win over Cuba.
Will John - Maghreb Fes - Morocco - No game this week.
Igor Kostrov - Veris - Moldova - No game this week.
Carlos Marinelli - Universidad San Martin - Peru - No game this week.
Neven Markovic - Servette FC - Switzerland - No game this week.
Yura Movsisyan - Spartak Moscow - Russia - Started and played 90 minutes in Armenia's 1-0 loss to Portugal.
Pablo Punyed - Stjarnan - Iceland - Started and played 90 minutes in El Salvador's 3-1 loss to Panama. Started and played 90 minutes in El Salvador's 2-0 win over Nicaragua.
Oriol Rosell - Sporting Club de Portugal - Portugal - No game this week.
Yann Songo'o - Blackburn - England - No game this week.
Milos Stojcev - FK Sarajevo - Bosnia - No game this week.
Matt Taylor - Saarbrücken - Germany - No game this week.
Ivan Trujillo - Deportivo Lara - Venezuela - No game this week.

Sporting Pass on Dispersal Draft

With the third pick in today's Dispersal Draft for the players on Chivas USA's roster, there were plenty of assumptions that Sporting Kansas City would use the pick to take someone from the club. Instead, when the time came, Sporting did what 11 other clubs did, and pass.
Only seven players were taken in the entire draft, with the highlight being Dan Kennedy who went first to FC Dallas. NYCFC took Matthew Dunn second before Kansas City passed. DC took Thomas McNamara fourth, Donny Toia went to Montreal in the sixth spot, Colorado grabbed Caleb Calvert at 8th, San Jose got Kristopher Tyrpak at 9th. Toronto grabbed Marco Delgado at the 14th pick as the last player taken.
The rest of Chivas' roster, including the likes of Andrew Jean-Baptiste, Bobby Burling, and Nathan Sturgis will all head into other drafts, including the waiver draft and re-entry draft. Those drafts could still see those players end up on Kansas City or other teams. Those routes also allow Kansas City to not have to protect them in the expansion draft, and also allows them to potentially negotiate better contracts for the club.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Seven SKC Academy Graduates in NCAA Tournament - SKC Academy Update

The NCAA today announced the field for this year's NCAA division 1 tournament. Seven SKC academy graduates at six schools will be competing at the tournament. Class of 2012 graduate, Eric DeJulio and Creighton are the only seeded team, getting the 12th seed. DeJulio and Creighton could face off against another academy graduate as Creighton plays the winner of Oregon State and Denver. Class of 2014 graduate, Cole Stevenson plays for Denver.

Class of 2011 graduate, Raymond Lee and Saint Louis will play Tulsa with a chance to play 13th seed Louisville with a win.  Heath Honold and Wake Forest will face off against UMBC with a chance to face Maryland should the Demon Deacons win. Zach Wright, Andy Lopez, and North Carolina face off against James Madison and will face 10th seed Charlotte should they win all three are from the class of 2014. The final academy graduate in the tournament is another 2014 graduate, Matthew Lewis and Fordham play Dartmouth. The winner will face off against 11th seeded Providence.

Here's the rest of this week's update as the season winds down.

Class of 2010

Brandon Fricke (Butler University) - D - RSr - Season over.

Class of 2011

Eric Hymer (Fort Hays State) - D - Sr - No game this week.

Raymond Lee (Saint Louis University) - MF - Sr - Started and had an assist in Saint Louis' 3-1 win over La Salle. Started in Saint Louis' 2-1 loss to Fordham.

Eric Moore (Rockhurst University) - D - Sr - Season over.

Michael Oakley (University of Missouri Kansas City) - D - Sr - Did not play in UMKC's 3-0 win over San Jose State. Came on as a substitute in UMKC's 3-0 loss to UNLV.

Paul Oliver (California Baptist) - D/MF - Sr - Season over.

Jordan Rideout (University of Missouri Kansas City) - F - Sr - Did not play in either of UMKC's games.

Taylor Vinnage (Benedictine) - GK - Sr - Season over.

Class of 2012

Andrew Brown (Bradley University) - MF - Jr - Started in Bradley's 1-0 win over Evansville. Started in Bradley's 2-1 loss to SIU-Edwardsville.

Eric DeJulio (Creighton University) - D - Jr - Started in #5 Creighton's 1-0 loss to Providence.

Daniel Hare (Loyola University in Chicago) - D - Jr - Started in Loyola's 3-1 win over Drake. Started in Loyola's 2-0 loss to Missouri State.

Andrew Lightner (Dayton) - D - RSo - Started in Dayton's 1-0 loss to Rhode Island.

Andrew Miller (Baker University) - D - Jr - Did not play in Baker's 2-1 win over MidAmerica. Started in Baker's 3-1 win over Culver-Stockton.

Nate Opperman (University of Evansville) - F - Jr - Came on as a substitute in Evansville's 1-0 loss to Bradley.

Derek Schrick (University of Missouri Kansas City) - MF - Jr - Did not play in either of UMKC's games.

Chris Tuso (Baker) - MF - Jr - Did not play in either of Baker's games.

Shane Woods (Drury University) - F - Jr - Did not play in either of Drury's games.

Class of 2013

Joe Amico (Jacksonville) - D - So - Season over.

Chris Arce (Neosho CC) - MF - So - Season over.

Matt Bernard (Drake) - MF - RFr - Did not play in Drake's 3-1 loss to Loyola.

Paul Dean (Rockhurst University) - D - So - Season over.

Seo-In Kim (Duke) - MF - So - Season over.

Adam Lightner (Northern Illinois University) - D - So - Season over.

Clay Stewart - (University of Missouri Kansas City) - MF/D - So - Did not play in UMKC's 3-0 win over San Jose State. Came on as a substitute in UMKC's 3-0 loss to UNLV.

Wes White (University of Missouri Kansas City) - F - RFr - Started and had two goals in UMKC's 3-0 win over San Jose State. Started in UMKC's 3-0 loss to UNLV.

Austin Wilcox (University of Missouri Kansas City) - MF - So - Started in UMKC's 3-0 win over San Jose State. Started in UMKC's 3-0 loss to UNLV.

Drew Wilson (Fort Hays State University) - D - So - No game this week.

Kyle Vassar - (University of Missouri Kansas City) - D - RFr - Did not play in UMKC's 3-0 win over San Jose State. Came on as a substitute in UMKC's 3-0 loss to UNLV.

Class of 2014

Darby Cronin (University of Missouri Kansas City)- MF - Fr - Did not play in UMKC's 3-0 win over San Jose State. Came on as a substitute in UMKC's 3-0 loss to UNLV.

Andrew Dittemore (Missouri State) - GK - Fr - Did not play in either of Missouri State's games.

Andy Ericks (Colorado School of Mines) - MF - Fr - Season over.

Heath Honold (Wake Forest) - F - Fr - No game this week.

Mason Leonard (Drake) - D - Fr - Started in Drake's 3-1 loss to Loyola.

Blake Levine (Baker) - F - Fr - Did not play in Baker's 2-1 win over MidAmerica. Came on as a substitute in Baker's 3-1 win over Culver-Stockton.

Matthew Lewis (Fordham) - D - Fr - Started in Fordham's 0-0 (5-3) shootout win over VCU. Started in Fordham's 2-1 win over Saint Louis. Started in Fordham's 1-0 win over Rhode Island.

Andy Lopez (North Carolina) - MF - Fr - No game this week.

Noah Mudd (Trevecca) - D - Fr - Season over.

Joey Piatczyc (West Virginia) - MF - Fr - Started and had an assist in West Virginia's 3-2 OT loss to Bowling Green.

Cole Stevenson (Denver) - F - Fr - Came on as a substitute in Denver's 3-0 win over IPFW. Came on as a substitute in Denver's 3-1 win over Western Illinois.

Austin Williamson (Northeastern State University) - GK - Fr - No game this week.

Zach Wright (North Carolina) - F - Fr - No game this week.