Friday, August 26, 2011

Sounders swap Allocation spots with Chicago, pick up forward Sammy Ochoa

By Money Mike

Ever since Blaise Nkufo was released, the Sounders have pretty much had their struggles up front. GM Adrian Hanauer said that the Sounders will pick up a striker during the international transfer period for MLS. We had Cilian Sheridan on trial in the hope of acquiring him on loan, but he didn't like the offer and then he went to Portland and he was close to signing with them on loan, but the deal fell through at the last second so he's now in Scotland with St. Johnstone F.C. We were in talks with Djibril Cisse, but he ended up joining Italian side Lazio. I don't know what happened that resulted in a failure to sign Prince Tagoue. When the transfer period closed a couple weeks ago, the Sounders came away with nothing. Now today, all prayers have finally been answered, the Seattle Sounders swapped Allocation ranking spots and also traded their Third-round pick of next years MLS SuperDraft to the Chicago Fire to pick up former U.S. U-20 forward Sammy Ochoa. After Chivas USA, the Houston Dynamo and Toronto FC said no to the 24-year old striker, the Chicago Fire were next in line at no. 4, so had the Sounders, who were no. 6 in the Allocation ranking, not swapped positions, Ochoa possibly would've ended up in Chicago (or maybe they would've passed). With this pick-up, Seattle now drops to the bottom of the Allocation ranking, which is no big deal, it's not like they'll go bankrupt for that. This is probably the third time this year that Chivas USA were first in line to picked up a player via Allocation. They said no to Benny Feilhaber, who was later picked up by the New England Revolution, and they said no to Freddy Adu, who is now with the Philadelphia Union.

Ochoa began his career in Mexico with Estudiantes Tecos in 2006 and played for them until the end of last season. So he was there for five years, and you have to question why he only played 27 matches and scored only two goals for the club. You can see they barely gave him a chance. Ochoa trained with the Sounders a couple months ago and he scored in a reserve match against the Los Angeles Galaxy. He was a member of the U.S. U-20 national team at the 2005 FIFA U-20 World Cup, who were coached by the current leader of the Sounders, Sigi Schmid.

Born in Mexico, Ochoa moved to Riverside, California and attended Riverside Poly High School. He is the younger brother of Jesus Ochoa who plays for USL club LA Blues and was part of LA Galaxy's MLS Cup Championship team in 2002.

My thoughts on this move:

When Ochoa signed with Major League Soccer back on Wednesday, the first comment came from a Sounders fan via Facebook. This person said, "3 goals in 5 years? No thank you." I disagreed with that statement. This guy has full potential that he has still yet to show. Sigi knows about this kid because he coached him at the FIFA U-20 World Cup. Considering the fact that we have failed to acquire a forward during the transfer period, Ochoa was probably our best option. If it involved losing a draft pick or maybe even a player, so be it. This is a good pick up, I think he's gonna fit in very well with this team and score a lot of goals.

Right now, we currently have 30 players on our roster plus Miguel Montano who is currently on loan with the Montreal Impact in the North American Soccer League. I'm pretty sure Montano isn't expected to return until the end of the NASL season which is late September-early October, bottom line is, add him, that makes 31 players in total, which is one over the limit, so there's a chance that one of our players could be on their way out. Will it be Montero? No. Rosales? NADA. Fernandez? No way. I don't know who will be packing when Miguel Montano returns, but I'm pretty sure it could be Taylor Graham or Mike Seamon. I got a pretty bad feeling that David Estrada might be sent packing. But again, a good pick up for the Seattle Sounders.

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