[THE SIXER] MLS clubs have been hit and miss with their signings of Designated Players. Blaise Nkufo became the sixth DP to last less than a year in MLS when Seattle announced on Tuesday it had agreed to part company with the Swiss international. For more on Nkufo, released following a preseason incident, and the other five DPs, all major busts ...
DENILSON (FC Dallas). The Brazilian broke a world record when he commanded a transfer fee of $32 million in 1998, but by the time he debuted with Dallas in September 2007 his career was on a downward slide. He lasted only 11 games before Dallas decided not to pick up his option. He spent the 2008 season on the bench at Palmeiras in Brazil before moving on to Vietnam, where he lasted three weeks, and Greece, where was released by Kavala after having failed to make an appearance in three months.
LUIS ANGEL LANDIN (Houston). Only 25, the Mexican should have done well with the Dynamo, which was hoping he'd draw in Houston's large Mexican-American community, but he disappointed in seven games during the Dynamo's run to the 2009 Western Conference final. He played nine games in 2010 before being shipped back to Mexico, where Cruz Azul owned his contract. He's now playing on loan at Atlante, for which he has played just 92 minutes and failed to score in 10 games in the Torneo Clausura.
MISTA (Toronto FC). The signs weren't good that Miguel Angel Ferrer Martinez would be the answer to Toronto FC's scoring problems. The 31-year-old Spaniard had just five goals in the previous four La Liga seasons with Atletico Madrid and Deportivo Coruna. He failed to score in nine MLS games last season and was waived in November, just four months after arriving in Toronto.
NERY CASTILLO (Chicago). Castillo was supposed to replace Cuauhtemoc Blanco as the Fire's Mexican national team star, but he played only eight games in MLS and didn't score a goal in 2010. Castillo was born in Mexico to a Uruguayan soccer player and grew up in Greece, where he starred for Olympiakos. But since moving to Shakhtar Donetsk in 2007 for $26 million, it's been one club after another: Manchester City, Dnipro, Chicago and now Aris, all on loan.
GEOVANNI (San Jose). The Quakes picked up the 30-year-old Brazilian as their first DP signing for their late-season push to the playoffs in 2010. He scored one goal and added three assists in 12 games but was no re-signed for the 2011 season. He's now playing in Brazil with Vitoria.
BLAISE NKUFO (Seattle). The 35-year-old Nkufo was not expected to start Tuesday's opener against Los Angeles because of an incident that took place during training camp, but the announcement shortly before kickoff that he was cut loose came as a shock. He didn't exactly tear up MLS after joining the Sounders from TC Twente following the 2010 World Cup, but he was hardly a bust like the other DP short-timers. Nkufo scored five goals in 11 games.