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Round Up: Your Thoughts On Juan Diego Gonzalez

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The following are reader comments from our new series, "Your Take," that were posted here on the Brotherly Game on Sunday. Enjoy.


#3 JDG
He is obviously in witness protection from the Columbian mafia, and can't be seen on TV.


My best guess is that he's there still here as a favor for a connection in Columbia, or because of his implications to our recruiting in Columbia. I'm guessing they promised someone he'd be employed here for at least a certain time period. Whatever the reason, and there has to be one, hopefully it will pay off. Because he's not bringing any value to the club on the pitch this year.

Alex TB:

He seems to be the new Toni Stahl
That confuses me about how MLS teams operate with regards to their personnel, the NFL is similar. Players will join the team and proceed to never play. Look at Chris Agorsor as another example.

Then there's the players that show up once or twice, and then just go. Does anyone remember Shavar Thomas, or David Myrie-who started the first regular season for the Union, ever, and was promptly released?

A good example that makes even less sense IMO is Dominic Oduro, who was released from Houston to go to Chicago after, again, the very first game of the season-against Union. I didn't think he was that bad!

I've never understood it.

Talon Talent:

I can't be really sure

Perhaps as punishment for something undisclosed. Basically, we aren't gonna let you go and sign somewhere else while still getting your full money from here, you will just sit on the bench and rot. Seems stupid but who knows, right? I tried to do some research and I found pretty much squat, this one write up and quote;

"On Tuesday, Union coach John Hackworth explained why the decision was made to leave a seasoned veteran like González Alzate at home while starters Danny Califf (illness) and Jordan Harvey (red card suspension) sat out.

"It's not as much about Juan Diego as it is about the Farfan brothers," said Hackworth, filling in for team manager Peter Nowak, who's in Poland for a charity event. "When you have them playing at the level they have, that's really what happened there. We have really good competition within our team right now at certain positions. Both Gabe and Michael have come on and done a fantastic job, proving they deserve that opportunity."

That may explain why he isn't getting playing time but it doesn't explain why he is still on the team. You'd think a 30 year old defender that was highly hyped coming in would be able to draw some interest. Perhaps just not at his price.
Another possibility is maybe he has an injury we aren't privy too. Nowak seems to like to keep things as confidential as possible in his house, so perhaps they are keeping that low key. I say this because back when the season started in our first game against Houston Gonzalez was listed as questionable with a Hip Flexor Strain. Maybe he never fully recovered from it and his fitness just isn't good enough to warrant starting over Farfan's, Okugo, or Daniels.
Gonzalez remains a mystery and maybe he remains on the team because a rash of injuries occurring is possible so maybe having someone with some real game minutes instead of bringing up a rookie, would be more beneficial in the case of an emergency. Only Nowak really knows.


Not knowing the details and nuances of his contract, I wonder if it was guaranteed for one year, if the league even does that. Obviously he's not a vital part of the team going forward, or he'd have logged time with the first team instead of a handful of reserve matches. And he's not getting the nod over other team mates ostensibly playing out of position, regardless of how "versatile" Nowak & Co. want their squad. He was brought in last season to shore up defensive holes and help solidify the ever-changing back line.

Basically, what I'm getting at it he could've negotiated a contract length so as not to leave the team a mere 2 1/2 months after joining it, but by participating in reserve league matches, traveling with the team on occasion, and dressing as a sub for some games, the Union is holding up their end of the deal, whereby keeping him match-fit for when departs the Union for greener pastures once this upcoming transfer window opens.


Chris Agorsor was probably cut because Veljko Paunovic was about to join the mix, which would have bumped him too far down the depth chart to see any meaningful playing time. His minimum salary was not held against the cap and there were plenty of open roster spaces.

JDG fills a senior international spot and is scheduled to make 4 times more than Agorsor. He's so far down the depth chart that he doesn't make the bench on a team that has 3 other pure defenders and one is out sick - the 3rd best defensive midfielder filled in at center back instead.

Jordan Harvey's trade seemed to be a purely financial move, drawing allocation money that will help with any summer signings. We'll never find out the terms of the deal, but it was attractive enough to break up the back line.

JDG will make 3 times more than Harvey this year, and while there is no way the Union could get allocation money for him, $193,000 in real money would be kinda cool to have around too...

Thorne Holder hasn't seen any first team minutes, but he has probably spent more time listed on the injury report than any other player (concussion).

If JDG was hurt, wouldn't they list him too?

I don't get it.