Balance Marks Supplemental Draft
Posted by: Matt Gaschk
The Sounders added two defenders, two midfielders and a forward in Tuesday's Supplemental Draft to finish off their 2012 training camp roster.
Entering the 2012 MLS SuperDraft, there was speculation abound that the day could be filled with trades.
After the draft, not a single trade involving 2012 draft picks had been made.
On Tuesday, the Sounders FC nearly opened the day with a trade when they acquired Andy Rose, picked sixth overall in the Supplemental Draft by Real Salt Lake, in exchange for the rights to Leone Cruz, who was taken in the second round of the 2011 MLS SuperDraft.
That swap started a day that saw Seattle add two defenders, two midfielders and a forward to their training camp roster that will take to the field on Thursday.
Along with Rose, Seattle selected defenders Tim Pontius and Wes Feighner, midfielder Jason Banton and forward Abdul Aman.
Rose was born in Melbourne, Australia, but moved to Bristol, England, where he played in Bristol City FC’s youth system, captaining the club’s U16 and U18 teams. He also lived in Chicago from age 10-14.
He was UCLA’s captain in 2010 and 2011 and was a First Team All-Conference selection both years. He played primarily as a holding midfielder, but also played center back as a sophomore.
In four years at UCLA, he had five goals and 11 assists, including 2 goals and 3 assists in 24 matches as a senior and 1 goal and 4 assists in 22 matches as a junior.
“He’s a player that we really like,” Sounders FC technical director Chris Henderson said. “He’s a two-way midfielder. He can also sit in as a holding midfielder, so he’s pretty versatile. He seems, at a young age, to be a student of the game.”
With their first pick in the second round, Seattle selected Pontius, a defender from UCSB who was at Seattle’s combine in Las Vegas. He is the younger brother of DC United midfielder Chris Pontius.
In 62 matches for the Gauchos, he scored six goals and added two assists.
“I think he’s another guy who can play center back and he can play defensive center mid, so his versatility is good,” Henderson said. “He’s a smart player, as well. I think he’s a coachable player, someone who will fit into the system, is willing to learn, will put in the effort every day in training -another good pro.”
With the 34th pick, they selected Banton, a midfielder from England, who played last year with Burton Albion while on loan from Leicester City. He played his youth soccer with Arsenal, Blackburn Rovers and Liverpool.
The 19-year-old Tottenham native played for England at the U17 level.
“He’s the type of player that likes to attack on the wing. You can tell he’s been taught how to play the right midfield position with his movement and his moves are set up to work the wing,” Henderson said. “We think he’s a guy who, depending on how things play out with our wingers, can step in on either flank.”
In the third round, they went local, picking Roosevelt High School and the University of Washington product Abdul Aman, who tallied two goals for the Huskies in 14 games as a senior.
Where Aman began to shine was at Seattle’s combine in Las Vegas.
“He’s a player we’ve been able to watch for a while. He’s very excited to come in,” Henderson said. “I think he’s going to have the opportunity to take players on and have some freedom up top. We have to see what the right combinations up top are. I think he’s keen to come in and work hard and fight for a spot.”
With their final selection, they added Feighner from Cal-Poly SLO. In 69 career matches, he posted four goals and five assists while helping anchor a solid defensive team for the Mustangs.
Those five are expected to be with the Sounders when they open training camp on Thursday. Originally slated to be at Starfire, the training sessions have been moved to the Seahawks practice facility at the Virginia Mason Athletic Center in Renton due to inclement weather.