So much for the calm before the storm. On the eve of the team's first ever MLS Super Draft, Philadelphia Union CEO & operating partner Nick Sakiewicz has once again worked his magic.
Sakiewicz pulled the trigger on a trade that allowed the expansion franchise to acquire allocation money, D.C. United’s 2010 MLS SuperDraft first-round pick (No. 7 overall) and Brazilian midfielder Fred.
In exchange, Philadelphia sent their No. 1 allocation ranking to D.C., which United used to obtain 2006 MLS Goalkeeper of the Year, Troy Perkins. Philadelphia now holds the No. 6 spot in the allocation rankings.
“Fred is a quality footballer, with an attacking mentality, and we took the opportunity to not only acquire him, but add the No. 7 pick overall plus valuable cash,” said Sakiewicz.
“This deal enables us to continue to shape our team to compete both now and in the future,” said team manager Peter Nowak. “But we still have a lot of work to do.”
So, with two of the first seven picks, Philadelphia enters the SuperDraft with growing anticipation, not just within the organization but also among its ever growing supporters group, Sons of Ben, who will be out in full force for today's selection process.
In three full seasons with D.C. United, Fred made 60 starts, played in 72 games and had 11 goals and 16 assists. His best season came in 2007, when he notched seven goals and seven assists. Last year, Fred collected two goals and four assists in 23 games (17 starts). The Brazilian helped D.C. capture two trophies during his time with United—the 2007 Supporters’ Shield and the 2008 U.S. Open Cup.
Fred will reunite with former D.C. midfielder Andrew Jacobson, who the Union plucked off the United roster during the MLS Expansion Draft.
Perkins meanwhile, returns to D.C. United and MLS after two years with Valerenga of the Norwegian first division.
Before transferring to Valerenga at the end of the 2007 season, Perkins spent his entire MLS career with D.C. United after signing with the club as an undrafted discovery player in March of 2004. In four seasons in the District, Perkins played in 77 games (all starts), and was the team’s No. 1 goalkeeper during each of the 2006 and 2007 seasons.
His all-time record in League play is 36-19-22, with a career goals-against average of 1.22. His 36 wins, 274 saves, 19 shutouts and 1.22 goals-against average all place him second in United club history.
The MLS SuperDraft will take place this afternoon at the Philadelphia Convention center as part of the weekend long National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) convention.