Roster Reset | Punching Cards, Having Doubts

Your pardon while I feed a couple of punchcards into the Reset Machine...
  1. John & Habarugira OUT
  2. Floribert N'Galula IN
I can understand jettisoning John (well past his sell-by date), but I wonder about the reasons for ditching Habarugira. Not that he was setting the world on fire last year, but... at the moment, we have one good fullback on the roster, though there are still questions about the status of his battered noggin, and a fistful of question marks (Wallace? Burch? Vaughn? Graye? McTavish?).

Habarugira showed little besides a fiery attitude and little respect for staying home as a defender in the few minutes he logged last year, but wouldn't you want to have depth in question marks going into the pre-season camp in hopes that one or more of them resolves into something resembling an answer? Maybe he wasn't willing to compete for a spot? Maybe he wanted to go back across the pond? Maybe he really was just awful (kinda begs the question of why we signed him in the first place)? Maybe we're clearing international spots for more signings? Maybe, maybe, maybe.

But a 31-year old striker who appears to have hit his talent ceiling at the English 3rd flight? A 22 year old brought up at one of the biggest clubs in the world, but who can't seem to break out of the reserves at lesser clubs and was recently looking to catch the bottom rungs of the professional leagues in England?

Castillo looks an impressive capture, and Perkins is as close as you're going to get to a guaranteed good one, but there's still a decided amount of what looks like floundering coming out of the United FO. Time will tell, I suppose, but their recent record in transfers in from abroad does little to calm any worries.

Update the list!

Senior Roster
1.  Josh Wicks, GK - trade bait?
2.  Troy Perkins, GK
3.  (I) Julius James, D
4.  Lawson Vaughn, D
5.  Marc Burch, D
6.  (I) Dejan Jakovic, D
7.  Bryan Namoff, D - nursing the noggin
8.  Devon McTavish, D/M
9.  (I) Floribert N'Galula, D/M - how much are we paying him? this year's African washout?
10.  Rodney Wallace, D/M - don't forget, he counts against the cap now
11.  (I) Cristian Castillo, M - on loan, but does anybody know for how long? [UPDATE: One year, option to buy--credit to Josh in the comments.]
12.  Danny Szetela, M
13.  Clyde Simms, M
14.  (I) Tiyiselani Shipalane, M/F - can't see both he and Boyzzz making the cut
15.  (I) Christian Gomez, M/F - probably gone, but included until departure confirmed
16.  Chris Pontius, M/F
17.  Santino Quaranta, M/F
18.  (I) Thabiso Khumalo, M/F - see Shipalane, Tiyiselani
19.  Jaime Moreno, F
20.  (I) Danny Allsopp, F - Oi! Oi! Oi! or oy vey?

Developmental Roster
1.  (GA) Bill Hamid, GK
2.  (I) Milos Kocic, GK - under contract, but is it for Dev Dollars again?

3.  John DiRaimondo, M
4.  Brandon Barklage, M - fully recovered?
5.  Jordan Graye, D - we took a local kid so he could live at home on Dev Dollars, right?

GA = Generation Adidas
I = requires international roster spot, maximum of 8 internationals on senior roster, internationals on developmental roster don't count against that total

Looks like we're back to even on the international spots (unless we're still carrying an extra one?) and the senior roster is filled... for now. Onalfo is apparently still shopping the Sudamericano supermarket (or does that become SuperMarket in MLS-speak?), but we'll have to shed some of the current crop to make room, both when it comes to international spots and roster spots, if we're to make any acquisitions.

Any thoughts, netizens? You've been awfully quiet of late...


  1. Castillo's loan is for 1 year with an option to purchase. I saw it on one of the Dc website articles about his official signing this past week...

  2. Riquelme would be perfect.. but also a risky all or nothing signing, he'd be a big money signing, but as long as he wants to come after the world cup and Chang will pay him.......

  3. Someone inside of United and someone who writes about United have both told me United has no intention of spending DP money. United can lose millions of dollars a year without a DP, yo. That's why they're trying to improve on the cheap (e.g. Allsopp).

    And haven't we learned about broken-down Argentine 10s by now?

  4. That's good news about Castillo. Glad we have him for the year and that he'll be incentivized to perform.

    So now we have Pontius and Allsopp up top with Moreno as super sub. Is there a chance that the team is considering either pairing Castillo with Pontius or trying him at A-mid? The only alternative is Szetela or Gomez, but everyone seems to recognize Gomez couldn't hang in a 442, much less a 352, so he's probably gone. Szetela hardly seems ready to serve as an A-mid, nor do I think he'll be displacing Simms at D-mid. Could he then slot in at right pushing Quaranta to A-mid or up top?

    I still am not convinced DC has given up on Burch at left fullback, though I wish they'd come to their senses already. So how would people structure a starting eleven given what we already have on the books? This is what I would do if our first game was tomorrow.

    Pontius Allsopp
    Castillo Simms Szetela
    Wallace Jakovic James Namoff

    I like this much more than last year's lineup but we obviously need someone who can orchestrate an attack which could serve to move Q to right mid and allow us to use Szetela off the bench. Hopefully Flo can provide decent insurance for Namoff and or James but that is a big if for now....

    I'm far from convinced Allsopp is going to get things done as well but doubt any additional front line help is on the way. Not sure where I'm going with this rambling post. I'm fairly encouraged and glad some of our younger guys will have a chance to take on more established roles. Frankly at this point of the winter offseason, I'd gladly pay to see a sub par United team.

  5. 22 is young.. maybe Man U was too high a level for him and hurt his confidence... maybe MLS will be a good place for him to regroup and dominate. Or at least be serviceable depth. Didn't see much from either released defender to warrant keeping them.
    Allsop is a hired gun, if he can do it, great.. if not there are others. If he can generate offense on his own he will be a step up from Luci of last season... Bottom line, think United should still get another forward...
    Castillo and Perkins make this a good offseason. Getting rid of Fred and Emilio can help United speed up and get smarter.. think Gomez is done unless he's happy to be a sub.
    Gotta think there's still more signings coming here...
    Now lets get a stadium so the team can get profitable and reenter DP land... and lets feast on the easier schedule

  6. i'm still really hoping we bring in another bonafide starter... but I have no probably touting out this lineup against KC on opening day...
    Pontius Allsopp

    Castillo Quaranta
    Simms Szetela

    Wallace James Jakovic Namoff


  7. Josh and K are pretty close to where I'm at. We've done well to get a couple of important pieces (Perkins and Castillo) and padded the squad depth, assuming Allsopp and Flo are cheap.

    I'd still be looking for an experienced head to boost the central defensive corps and a genuine goal threat up top (one who can create for himself, not just poach), though I'm realistic enough to realize that we're not likely to land both (if either).

    Like BDR, I'm less sanguine about aged Argentine playmaking beef.