By AVI CREDITOR
After Major League Soccer's roster compliance deadline came and passed, the Philadelphia Union had filled just 22 of a maximum of 30 roster spots. Peter Nowak assured reporters on Wednesday that while the club is under the salary cap and the roster is not yet complete, one of last season's fixtures in the starting lineup will not be returning to the club in 2011.
The Union and MLS did not exercise the option to purchase Michael Orozco Fiscal, who was on loan to Philadelphia for one year from San Luis. His loan expired on Jan. 1, and the one-time United States national team defender is still property of the Mexican club, though the Union never made mention of his buy-option not being exercised.
"The overall confusion about that is because everybody forgot what the status of Michael Orozco Fiscal was last year," Nowak said on a conference call from Greece. "He was on a one-year loan with an option to buy, and we did not execrise that option. There's nothing much to say on how and what. It was a simple process at the end of the year."
With Orozco Fiscal not in the team's plans, the Union's defensive corps is down to five members: Danny Califf, Jordan Harvey, Carlos Valdes, Juan Diego Gonzalez and Sheanon Williams.
"The roster is still not complete, but we needed to provide the necessary information to Major League Soccer," Nowak said. "We are under the cap and under the restrictions of Major League Soccer."
The Union signed rookie goalkeeper Thorne Holder and local product Ryan Richter ahead of Tuesday's compliance deadline, and another potential addition to the roster could be rookie Levi Houapeu, the team's third-round pick in January's SuperDraft.
Houapeu, an attacking player out of UMBC, has been training and playing with the team in Greece and throughout the preseason, and Nowak said that the team and him have not yet agreed to contract terms though talks are on-going.
What do you think about Orozco's contract not being purchased? Who do you hope to see the Union sign?
Share your thoughts below.