MLS: Red Bulls Bring in Veteran Keeper Kevin Hartman to Add Depth

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistMarch 22, 2013

FRISCO, TX - OCTOBER 28: Goalkeeper Kevin Hartman #1 of FC Dallas shouts instructions to his teammates during the first half of a soccer game against Chivas USA at Pizza Hut Park on October 28, 2012 in Frisco, Texas. (Photo by Brandon Wade/Getty Images)
Brandon Wade/Getty Images

Amongst the plethora of international matches on Friday, the New York Red Bulls made a crucial move to add depth to their goalkeeping ranks. 

The Red Bulls announced on their website that they signed Kevin Hartman, a longtime veteran of MLS at 38 years old, as cover while Ryan Meara is still out injured.

Before the signature of the former LA Galaxy, Sporting Kansas City and FC Dallas keeper, the Red Bulls had Luis Robles and 17-year-old Santiago Castano as the only healthy keepers on their roster. 

Bringing in Hartman benefits all parties involved in the transaction. Hartman has been looking for a new team ever since his contract was not renewed by FC Dallas at the end of the 2012 season while the Red Bulls needed to bolster their depth at the position. 

The Red Bulls' first-choice keeper, Meara, has been out with a hip injury that he suffered last summer during the regular season.

The Red Bulls do not want to rush the progress of their keeper of the future, especially if they have two valuable keepers on the roster that are capable of playing at the highest level (via Talk). 

Robles has started the first three games of the season for the Red Bulls and has conceded five goals. If Robles is unable to hold down the fort in front of the goal, Hartman could slide into the starting role. 

As Ives Galarcep of Soccer by Ives points out, Hartman will see some familiar faces when he joins up with the Red Bulls as he will be playing with three former FC Dallas teammates. 

Other reactionary tweets showed plenty of concern for Meara's spot on the depth chart as the first-choice keeper.

Hartman, who will also serve as the goalkeeping development coach for the Red Bulls, has played over 400 matches since his 1997 debut with the Galaxy. 

The 38-year-old has two MLS Cups, two Supporters Shields and the 1999 Goalkeeper of the Year award. 

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