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Red Bulls, Rapids & Revs make moves
by Ridge Mahoney, July 2nd, 2009 6:45AM
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[MLS] Though many teams are stretched for roster openings and salary-cap space, moves are inevitable with the opening of the domestic transfer window July 15 and the passing of the June 30 contract guarantee date. Several teams have already waived and signed players, and in a rather curious move Red Bull New York traded allocation money to Colorado in exchange for goalkeeper Bouna Coundoul. Soccer American's Ridge Mahoney looks at key player moves around the league. ...

ITS BOUNA TIME, AGAIN. Though the Red Bulls need upgrades, goalkeeper would probably come at the bottom of the shopping list. Still, Coundoul has been added to duel with Danny Cepero for the starting job. Last year's starter, Jon Conway, was waived.

"We believe that Bouna has a bright future ahead of him and can immediately strengthen the squad with his ability and experience," said Red Bull New York Sporting Director Jeff Agoos in a press release announcing the trade.

Coundoul, though a Senegalese international, is a local of sorts. He attended Martin Luther King Jr. High School in New York City and played two seasons at the University of Albany. In three seasons with the Rapids (2006-08) he played 52 regular-season games, posted 16 shutouts, and conceded 1.16 goals per game.

During the offseason Colorado rebuffed his requests for a higher salary and instead installed Matt Pickens as its No. 1 goalie. Through MLS regulations it retained his rights and will receive $125,000 in allocation money, according to a source. Coundoul, 27, has played twice for Senegal.

Conway, 32, started in a career-high 28 games for the Red Bulls last year but was handed a 10-game suspension near the end of the season by MLS for failing a drug test. He had played nine matches and compiled a 1.78 goals-allowed average in 2009. In his career, which began in 2000 with San Jose, he's played 81 regular-season games with a 1.39 GAA and lifetime mark of 27-34-18.

The Red Bulls released midfielder Juan Pietravallo, 27, after reaching an agreement to terminate his guaranteed contract. He was one four international players signed during the 2008 summer transfer window but played just 16 matches.

FRENCH LEGION. Colorado has shored up its back line by signing French-born center back Julien Baudet, 30, who comes to MLS from the lower divisions of English soccer very familiar to head coach Gary Smith.

Baudet will be officially added to the roster upon receipt of his International Transfer Certificate and the opening of the domestic transfer window.

He captained League One team Crewe Alexandra last season following stints with Oldham Athletic, Rotherham United, and Notts County. He debuted as a professional 10 years ago with Toulouse of the French First Division.

NEW REV IN TOWN. He's not the big-name goalscorer New England fans might have wished for, but Lithuanian striker Edgaras Jankauskas could help alleviate the loss of Taylor Twellman, whose dizzy spells and problems with neck pain have forced him onto the injured reserve list.

The Revolution sent its original third-round pick in the 2010 draft to Kansas City to obtain an international slot, of which it now has eight. Jankauskas, 34, has trained with New England for the past two weeks and has already signed a contract. He will be registered to play once he is issued a P1 work visa and the league receives his international transfer certificate.

Jankauskas, who signed as a free agent, has played for more than a dozen clubs in several countries since starting his pro career with his hometown club, FK Zalgiris Vilnius, in 1991. His notable stops include Benfica, FC Bruges, Real Sociedad, FC Porto, and Hearts. The 6-foot-4 striker has played 54 games and scored 10 goals for Lithuania.

 



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