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The lowdown on the Van Den Bergh trade

So why exactly did the New York Red Bulls trade away Dave Van Den Berg, arguably their most valuable player of 2008?

They traded him because he asked to be traded.

According to sources, Van Den Bergh approached the Red Bulls soon after MLS Cup and asked to be traded to FC Dallas, with one of the key reasons being Van Den Bergh's wife has family in Dallas which could help them with the care of their oldest son, who has been battling an undisclosed illness. The Red Bulls weighed the request, along with Van Den Bergh's own demands for a new contract, and decided the best thing to do for all parties involved was to trade the 32-year-old winger away.

Whether the club would have kept Van Den Bergh if not for the request is something that will only ever really be known by head coach Juan Carlos Osorio and technical director Jeff Agoos, but the fact remains the Red Bulls still managed to get good value for Van Den Bergh.

I will offer a further breakdown of the trade and what it means for the Red Bulls on Wednesday. For now, Red Bulls fans might want to think about the possibilities the club has now with a speedy young forward to pair alongside Juan Pablo Angel, as well as the 11th and 18th overall picks in an MLS Draft considered by almost every front office in MLS as being deep with talent.

Given this information, how do feel about the trade? Still hate it for the Red Bulls? Is it more acceptable knowing the circumstances? Think the Red Bulls made out?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Let’s also enjoy the fact that all the other “major” leagues would never give a flying F about a player’s family requests. Nice to hear it’s win win (we hope).

  2. I like the cap space and the picks, but will miss VDB. “Speedy young forward” has been paired w/ Angel before, so that means squat to me right now. Now if they can get some value for that over-rated Magee…

  3. How is the DeRo trade a failure? Houston has Stuard Holden ready to step in and probably be equally as good as DeRo. RB have no one at left wing.

  4. The silver lining is that it gives Rojas a chance to play where he’s most comfortable – on the left wing – and hopefully ends the pretense that he’s a playmaking central midfielder.

  5. Interesting…I was watching Fox Soccer Report, and they talked about this transfer, and (I believe) cited “soccer blog Ives” as the source.

  6. im from miami so i dont have a team in the mls currently (until miami fcb comes to fruition), and have been looking for one to pull for in the meantime because i find it easier to follow a league when you have a specific team to root for.

    this settles it. in 2009 i will pull for new york red bull. this was a very classy move, good for them.

  7. I’m glad almost everyone is seeing this the right way. Family is more important than soccer, and the Red Bulls actually treated vdB in the way a first-class organization would.

    From a soccer standpoint. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: LET’S SEE HOW IT PLAYS OUT. You simply cannot judge “equal value” until you see the draft picks and watch Oduro play 15-20 games.

    He NEVER started for Dallas. If he gets minutes with RBNY and pops up with 12 goals, will everyone be saying “we didn’t get equal value for Dave”?

    Oduro is only 23. There is something to be said for youth in this equation, as well as the money saved by RBNY. Right now, it looks as though Agoos and Osorio are trying to not only get quality, but also quantity, considering the team will be competing in 3 competitions this season. We all saw what happened in the Open Cup last year when RBNY played mostly a second string roster…an embarassing loss to Crystal Palace Baltimore. I’m glad the team is trying to be competitive in all competitions next year.

    The season starts two months from now, and there are more deals and signings to be made. Let’s see how the WHOLE ROSTER looks before we made judgments as well. Osorio might have a left wing in mind that’s on the market.

  8. It would have been hypocritical of Osorio to deny VDB’s request, as he did a similar move from Chicago to be near family in NY.

  9. I left the Army after 9+ years (almost 1/2 way to retirement) due to my son’s illness. We make tough choices as parents for the welfare of our family. I think the NJRB did the right thing. Good luck to VDB and his family in Dallas.

  10. Well, that’s a legit reason to ask for a trade. Unlike, say, your wife asking to go to New Jersey because she’s too cold.

    Karma’s a bitch, isn’t it Osorio?

  11. I love that some fans are crying about this trade, and yet, some of us, actually see us as a stronger team now. I do. I think we got alot out of this deal that probably wasn’t worth it. We sent an aging left winger with no speed whatsoever who would’ve been a big cap hit for what he brought to the table, and in return got alot of youth and capspace. It’s perfect. Everyone wins, Even Van den Bergh does. He came to MLS originally to play in Dallas.

    My only minor complaint, I would have rather one of the other young players Dallas has, like Dax Mccarty or maybe Brek Shea. But I really love this deal. One of the better deals I can remember for some time.

    Watch what this team does next year.

  12. I personally don’t really think there’s that much value in moving up in the draft. Serviceable MLS players usually come from all over the draft, and there aren’t dramatically more from the first round than the third round.

  13. Convey would be a very capable add on left wing, but not for DP money. Also, he’d come back through the allocation process, so it’s not at all clear that we’d have a shot of signing him.

  14. mikeK, the sky isn’t falling — it’s the NYRB ticket sales that may start falling. Not that they have far to fall.

    Rojas can’t play D. That’s a big problem. I guess it all depends on the club’s other moves this offseason.

    If this ends up badly though, there will be hell to pay.


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