I’ve really started thinking a lot about Osvaldo Alonso and his entry into MLS. I’ve thought a bit about how the Sounders managed to acquire Alonso from a USL Pro team and the fact that there is still some untapped talent in the league. Now, I’m not saying there is a ton of first team talent. It all comes with a slight caveat. But understand that there is talent in the league would be useful to many teams and that includes the Sounders.
Understand this first. Alonso was a bit of a rare situation given his Cuban background and imagration into this country.His talent in that league was rather apparent but it also took some leg work and it still took some time to evaluate. Players of his caliber can fall through the cracks but given the magnifying glass that comes with a player defecting he was a bit easier to spot.
What it doesn’t mean, is that we can’t think about finding the next Alonso down at that level. Sifting through the chaff of either USL Pro, NASL or the free wandering U.S. pro there are going to be–and are–some interesting pieces. I’m going to guarantee with the prospective agreement between MLS and USL there are going to be more finds and more deals for prospective players in that league to catch on with first tier clubs.
There are some players that could be had for free that could be interesting grabs and players I think the Sounders would be interested in…
Amaechi Igwe, LB, Free-Agent
The former New England defender and U-20 fullback is on the free and could be looking for an opportunity to try and recharge his value. He was playing out in 3. Liga, which is a level below 2. Bundesliga. As a 17 year-old he had a part in the 2007 FIFA U-20 World Cup. Now, a 24 year-old he is back and looking to catch on to a club.
Okay, now I’ve told you pretty much what you can find on Wikipedia. He’s an interesting thought, a guy from the west coast (California) and someone that has experienced a few injuries that have set him back from having a chance at U-23 or even being in USMNT conversation. Sure, playing in Germany is probably the best way for him to try and give himself an opportunity to get back into that conversation. But coming to Seattle he’d at least be on a bigger national stage.
He’s mentioned in a few different interviews that he has no immediate plans to come back to MLS but it’s not as if that has changed some young minds before. He isn’t a spring chicken but still has some youth in him and considering that he was waived from New England he could be had relatively easily.
Jamie Finch, LB, Carolina Railhawks
If the name sounds familiar it’s because it’s been mentioned before. Actually, around this time just last year. The former Washington Husky was Sounder[At]Heart’s choice for the Sounders 2nd round pick in the SBNation’s mock Superdraft from 2012. Finch went unselected and was free to negotiate with teams but chose to head to USL and the Carolina Railhawks.
I liked the move for multiple reasons, if nothing else than the opportunity to play consistent minutes at a reasonable US level. Judging by a few of the videos I’ve seen of his this past year I think his skills and ability are still there and he’d be an interesting guy to just put on trial and see if he doesn’t work out at a cheap wage.His physical presence and decent left foot cross remind me of Leo in a few different ways, all the good ones really… but he’s young and despite the lack of time watching him I’m sure he makes plenty of gaffs positionally as well as many others.
He’s not a starter but you wonder if he might not be able to grow into one and if nothing else help relieve Marc Burch for a match or two.
Tyson Wahl, LB/CB, Free-Agent
Hey, we know this guy! Former Sounder Tyson Wahl everyone! The guys is as reliable as reliable comes and an MLS vet that’s been around the corner a time or too. If you were to sign, maybe a young fullback on a Home Grown Deal, Wahl might make some sense… you know in a better than, but not really Zach Scott sort of way.
William Yomby, CB, Richmond Kickers
A USL/NASL journeyman, Yomby got a mention as one of the top defenders in the USL. He’s 28 but maybe worth taking a flier on for a 3rd or 4th centerback.Don’t know too much about the fellah, but I’ve seen some mention of him and he seems like a guy that would be a fighter and push the competition level.
Kyle Davies, RB, Orlando City Soccer Club
At 23, Davies already has made his way through the MLS system. The problem at many of his stops (RSL, FC Dallas, LAG and TFC) were just the lack of opportunities to allow him to grow into the potential that he has and is close too. Playing at Orlando gave him the opportunities to start that. I wonder if he wouldn’t be an interesting guy to pick-up and see if he can’t grow into an option with Seattle. The former Southhampton youth and US U-23 player has potential and I see him growing into a good player, just not sure how this story is going to play out just yet.