MLS- Seattle Sounders

Union acquire Parke from Sounders

The Philadelphia Union’s wheeling and dealing did not end with the acquisition of Sebastien Le Toux.

A day after picking up Le Toux via a trade with the New York Red Bulls, the Union shipped allocation money and a 2013 first round Supplemental Draft pick to the Seattle Sounders in exchange for defender Jeff Parke. The 30-year-old centerback spent the last three seasons with the Sounders, and he was voted the club’s Defender of the Year in 2011 and 2012.

Parke, who is an Abington, PA. native, adds to an already deep group of Union centerbacks that already includes Carlos Valdes, Amobi Okugo and Bakary Soumare.

What do you think of the Union acquiring Parke? Surprised the Sounders let him go for so little? Who will start at centerback for the Union in 2013?

Share your thoughts below.

    • evan

      i expect Zach Scott will be playin’ a lot more centerback next year. i think he’s a better centerback than fullback anyway…


      • Ed

        Seattle is in trouble if Zach Scott is a starting CB. Parke had a good season, but I have a feeling they are lining up an upgrade.


      • Wendell Gee

        I simply can’t imagine playing Zach Scott more is plan A. Or even plan B or C.


  • Joe

    I think it is interesting that the Union now have 4 players slotted at CB at a cost of 900k (Soumare at 280, Valdes at 268, Parke at 185 and Okugo at 173) and only 2 can play (normally). Okugo will probably switch back to DM but what does this say about Soumare? Unless Parke can play LB (which I have no evidence to show that he can) that is a lot of money to pay 3 players with one not starting. I know with the WCQ going on that the Union may lose 1 or 2 for some time but in the salary cap structure of MLS that is a lot to use on a bench player.


      • BFT

        Unfortunately, Valdes is probably the most likely candidate to go, as he has reportedly been attracting interest from European clubs. I’d be happy as hell for him, but that would be a big loss.


      • Joe

        I haven’t heard of any rumors regarding Valdes but that wouldn’t surprise me as he played very well for the Union last year and was getting call ups to the national team. He did trail off a little at the end and I am not sure if it was lack of desire as the Union were well out of it, tired as he played a lot of minutes or a combination of both.

        He looked less than stellar against the Red Bulls at the season finale but I do not take away from his play the rest of the season.

        Do you have any links to rumors for him?


      • atd

        If I worked for Freiburg I would steal Amobi Okugo’s passport while he’s at training to make sure he couldn’t leave Germany.


    • Zubrowka

      Okugo is really a DM. He filled in at CB because he is so capable and the Union were so thin there with Soumare unable to rehab from injury in time to get minutes after his acquisition.


      • PD

        given the glut at that position in the US NATS side, plus the dearth of depth at the CB spot, it would probably not be a bad idea from the USMNT perspective to have Okugo log more hours in that position. He’s looked fantastic there (if a bit green).


    • atd

      You know, if this fellow Hackworth were enterprising, he might consider running three in the back — Okugo as the sweeper between Parke and Soumare (assuming Valdez is gone). They’re already playing natural wingbacks on both sides….


  • euroman

    Sounders obviously have a CB on the way plus another player they needed to clear salary for….


    • SteveE

      We were looking heavily into the Hondouran CB towards the end of the season as Mario was starting to crack into the starting spot. My thought would be someone young on the rise from Central/South America like that.


  • Dank

    I’ve always felt that Parke gets overrated because he gets to play behind a strong Seattle midfield that reduces the chances he has to snuff out. But he’s still a good player and would definitely help the Union. And depth is always important, especially if you have players who can slot at different positions.


  • mike

    Tough to judge trade when allocation money is not disclosed. The pick is worthless, but if the money is legit, then it’s basically trading Parke for the cap room to bring in a player from outside MLS that the Sounders deem to be more valuable. I guess right now they start Ianni and Hurtado? Egads, Johnson and Montero better keep scoring goals.


    • Upstate Jason

      “The pick is worthless”? It’s pick #43 in the draft. Parke himself was selected with pick #60. Last year, #44 was Andy Rose (11 starts with Seattle) and #89 was Antoine Hoppenot (25 appearances with Philly). In past years Dan Kennedy was #86 and Jeff Larentowicz was #93. Sean Johnson was #51, Geoff Cameron #42, and Steven Lenhart #48. Bobby Boswell went completely undrafted (96 selections) when he entered the league.

      And some guy named Chris Wondolowski was pick #89.


  • Peaton

    I think Jeff Parke is exelent, and with Seb LT, the Union should be much more solid. These are two good veteran players who can help get things together when last year there was a lack of cohesion and consistency.


  • Victor

    So what does Seattle do now? They get money and I read they are going after Verdu from Espanyol again. If they get him what DP goes and with them losing this CB what do they have for defense? I’m not to familiar with there defensive depth.


    • acj

      They rotated Hurtado Parke and Ianni last year so I’d expect Hurtado and Ianni to be the starters with Scott filling in as a backup plus a min salary guy for emergencies.

      I wouldn’t put too much stock in the Verdu rumors, it all stems from an interview that he did with a Spanish newspaper where he said that the sounders would like to sign him. Not that the sounders wouldn’t love to have him. I just don’t think he wants to go. He’s negotiating with his current club and the threat of an offer from the Sounders gives him leverage.

      As for the DP slot they could probably either sell Rosales or restructure his contract to give him more years at less per year. that is unless an offer comes in for Montero that would net them the full $667K (meaning $1M + whatever they paid for his transfer fee) in allocation money, in which case they could move him.


  • Kevin

    The sounders are reporting that Parke asked to be traded. He just had a kid and wants to move back to Philly, where he’s from.


    • Bobb

      Makes sense. Given what MLS players make, I’m glad teams do things like this, whereas if it was NFL/MLB/NBA/NHL I’d say “suck it up professional athlete making millions of dollars to play a game.”


  • Yep

    Ianni>Parke. That said, a little birdie told me a new CB is on the way to Seattle. Also heard Hurtado may be traded as well if a certain young CB can be signed. Seattle may be starting 4 new defenders on opening day.


  • peterjh

    Folks should also note Seattle has some serious salary cap issues, and they need allocation dollars badly. Expect more moves.


  • Kangarooster

    I’d really like to know the amount of money teams receive in allocation for not making the playoffs, trades/transfers, and qualifying for CCL.


  • TimmyU

    I think this is really a trade that benefits both teams. Seattle is in a difficult situation with the cap and this one move creates a lot more flexibility with salary out and cash in. Plus, the #43 pick is nothing to sneeze at – current Sounders Alex Caskey and Andy Rose were selected at the same part of the draft in 2011 and 2012.

    Philly can worry less about Soumare getting back to full fitness and effectiveness and focus on other areas. Not sure whether speculation drove rumor or the other way around, but Valdes seems ready for a european adventure and his sale would permit a lot of re-investment in the squad. Parke provides a veteran presence on the field and in the locker room, a local talent, and a long-term option for the U at CB. His family considerations make it seem likely that Parke will spend a few years with the Union, maybe ending his career there. Parke also is a quality option in the air and the U have had a lot of trouble defending set pieces.

    What this does, however, is call into question where Okugo will see the field in 2013. He’s a DM by trade who can play CB, but his emergence in 2012 was one of the biggest stories in a down year. If Soumare returns to health and Parke settles, whether Valdes leaves or not, I think Okugo goes back to being a depth option at CB. If Okugo’s two-way abilities are too good to keep on the bench, does Brian Carroll lose his spot or become a trade chip? Carroll has been the definition of defensive consistency for the Union for two years. If the Union play two DM as they have in the past, are we in for another offensively frustrating year? Curious to see how Hackworth reconciles this new CB logjam with what has historically been the U’s logjam at DM.


    • atd

      I can’t figure this out either. On the one hand, you’d think they’d try to keep Okugo on the field, given that (a) he needs to learn the position; (b) he has the potential to be much better than Parke and Soumare; and (c) he’s potentially much more valuable to the club, if they’re able to sell him for $3-5 million at some point. If you make him a depth player or move him back to CDM, you risk diminishing the value of potentially one of your most valuable assets. On the other hand, the Union need some aerial presence from their CBs like a man in the desert needs water. They need to get Soumare or Parke on the field somehow.

      Four options: (1) Sit Okugo, play Parke or Soumare and Valdez; (2) Play Okugo at CDM, play Parke or Soumare and Valdez; (3) Play Okugo with Parke or Soumare, shop Valdez, and use the profits to buy a reliable target striker or wide midfielder; (4) Play three in the back.


Add your comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More from SBI Soccer