[MLS SPOTLIGHT] Dwayne De Rosario may have finally found a home. After moving from Toronto FC to New York to D.C. United
last season after failing to get the long-term contract he coveted from Toronto, the 2011 MLS MVP signed an agreement that could keep him at D.C. United for the remainder of his career.
“It’s nice to be with an organization that has the same goals and ambitions as I,” said DeRo.
“Dwayne proved last year that is he is the best player in Major League Soccer and we are pleased to have signed him to a deal that will see his stay in D.C. extended beyond 2012,” said D.C. United general manager Dave Kasper. “He is the centerpiece of our team -- both on the field and in the locker room and we are thrilled he’ll be wearing our colors for years to come.”
The 33-year old Canadian scored 16 goals and 11 assists -- 13 goals and seven assists with D.C. -- en route to being honored with the League’s top individual award. Exact terms of the deal were not disclosed but it was reported De Rosario will be United's highest-paid player though he will not count as a Designated Player because allocation money was used to pay down his salary below the $350,000 DP amount.
“D.C. United has a very rich history and one that we want to relive in the near future," said De Rosario. "Hopefully, we can start this year. It’s a great feeling to be associated with the United family. Ever since I came here, the organization and the fans have accepted me as part of the family, and I want to keep this family growing all across the D.C. area and relive those special moments.”
How much does D.C. value De Ro, winner of MLS titles with San Jose (2001 and 2003) and Houston (2006 and 2007)?
“In all of our years -- and we’ve had some great, great players at D.C. United -- I’ve never seen a better performance than what we got from Dwayne,” D.C. president Kevin Payne recently told Soccer America's Ridge Mahoney.
Those players include Marco Etcheverry, Jaime Moreno and Christian Gomez, all of whom earned Best XI honors on championship teams.
“Not only the number of goals and number of assists but the quality of the goals," Payne added. "You can see it in the highlights. He was pretty remarkable. The fact that he got three times as many [MVP] votes from the players as the next highest vote-getter shows what his peers think of him.”