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Adu Would Have Gone with or Without Nowak

As it turns out, Peter Nowak had nothing to do with D.C. United's decision to trade teenager Freddy Adu to Real Salt Lake, despite the departed coach's strained relationship with the youngster. United President Kevin Payne told the Washington Post that he still would have had Adu traded had Nowak stayed with the club. He mentioned that Tom Soehn, the man who replaces Nowak as D.C.'s head coach, has been involved in every personnel move the club discussed this summer, including offloading Adu to Real Salt Lake. Nowak, a former MLS star with the Chicago Fire, has been appointed as the assistant to interim U.S. coach Bob Bradley, who was his coach in Chicago from 1998-2002. After nearly losing Soehn to the coaching spot left vacant by Bradley at Chivas USA, Payne lodged in a late call after receiving Nowak's resignation. Soehn was about to board a plane to LA to finalize that deal, but he received the call and decided to think things through. Two days later, he became United's fifth coach in its 11-year history. Said Payne: "I was nervous when other teams were courting Tom, and we were prepared to go to extraordinary lengths ... to convince Tom to stay here." Terms of the deal were not disclosed, although his salary is believed to be in the neighborhood of $200,000. Soehn says United will retain the way it plays. "You are still going to see the same style. One of the things we're so proud of is the way we possess the ball and we make the game beautiful. That's going to continue."

Read the whole story at Washington Post »

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