News broke yesterday that DC United has traded with Philadelphia for the rights to sign Troy Perkins who is leaving Norway to resign with the league. Perkins is an excellent keeper and United have been struggling to replace him since he left a couple of years ago. With Josh Wicks injured, getting a goal keeper was a top priority for United, so in that sense United got their man. But at what price?
In my view, United simply gave away way way too much. In exchange for the right to sign Perkins, United gave away Fred and the #7 pick in the draft. Fred’s form had slipped over the past couple of years, but there were hopes that he would regain his productive form, as he is just turned 30. United resigned him with this in mind, thinking that Fred could help fill the void at attacking midfield that will likely be left by the departure of Christian Gomes. Trading Fred for Perkins would be worth it.
But trading Fred and fist round pick is a huge price. United’s two first round picks last year, Chris Pontius and Rodney Wallace were instant starters and look like potential national team players – Pontius is in the USMNT Jan camp and Wallace may play the always scarce left back position (he also may have to chose between Costa Rica and the US). This was also a fairly deep draft, so much so that there is good reason to think United could have drafted someone to contribute right away.
So in effect, United traded two potential starters, for an upgrade at goalie who will also potentially cost quite a bit. Furthermore, Perkins may make the World Cup squad – although I don’t think he will – and that would mean he would miss quite a bit of the season. Just doesn’t seem worth it at all. Steve Goff at Soccer Insider I think gets this right:
Leverage is nice: Thanks to its standing atop the allocation list, Philadelphia now has two of the top seven selections in the draft (Nos. 1 and 7) and a veteran — though underachieving — starting midfielder (Fred) as well as additional allocation funds. And for what? By giving up its place in the allocation order. Well played, Mr. Nowak.
Philly fans should love Novak right now. And at the very least, DC fans will be expecting a move for a designated player and perhaps some other moves today at the MLS draft.