David Falk has followed soccer in the Puget Sound region since 1974. This blog covers Sounders FC, local college soccer, Seattle Wolves FC, Tacoma Tide FC and Kitsap Pumas. Send tips or comments to: goalseattle@gmail.com
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Seattle Soccer Examiner

Seattle Soccer Examiner

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Sounders expand their roster in expansion draft

Welcome back to the PNW, Nate Jaqua!

Seattle Sounders FC have made their ten expansion draft player choices. The list was made public at MLSnet.com.

Chosen by the Sounders were Nate Jaqua, Brad Evans, Steven King, Jeff Parke, James Riley, Khano Smith, Jarrod Smith, Nathan Sturgis, Peter Vagenas and Tyson Wahl. See the updated Sounders roster page here.

Below are links to the player bio pages and also some video from YouTube. Major League Soccer made a highlight reel of the drafted guys that you can view here. The official Sounders press release on the draft is here.

Nate Jaqua (Houston)

Brad Evans (Columbus)

Stephen King (Chicago)

Jeff Parke (New York)

James Riley (San Jose)

Khano Smith (New England)

Jarrod Smith (Toronto FC)

Nathan Sturgis (Real Salt Lake)

Peter Vagenas (Los Angeles)

Tyson Wahl (Kansas City)

In a teleconference with media after the names were announced Sounders FC General Manager Adrian Hanauer and Technical Director Chris Henderson spoke about the process. Hanauer stressed the thorough nature of how the club had approached the drafting process. Hours of film had been watched, software was used to compile data of every player's touch of the ball from last season. References were interviewed, and finally the players themselves were called and asked how they would feel about becoming Sounders.

Hanauer called the draft "extremely balanced, with a combination of experienced veterans, guys with two or three years experience, and young guys with an enormous upside." He went on to say that the defensive slant of the draft was due to the current offensive players already signed. Hanauer also concluded that these players would still be fighting for spots along with any others brought in for training camp in late January.

Cris Henderson spoke briefly about the biggest surprise in the draft, Seattle tabbing New Zealand international forward Jarrod Smith from Toronto FC . Henderson called Smith an excellent target forward candidate who is also looking to move up with his national side. Henderson also commented on the selection of New York Red Bulls' defender Jeff Parke. Henderson played with him briefly in New York and feels confident the currently suspended player can be a defensive rock in the back for Seattle. Henderson played down worries about Park's suspension (four more matches for drug use) and his free agency, hinting that the Sounders feel confident they can sign him.

Read the press conference transcript here.

Soccer By Ives
Seattle P-I

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