MLS Notes: Rapids sign Honduran veteran Thomas, FCD add striker & more

Thomas (Getty Images)

The Colorado Rapids may be slipping further and further out of postseason contention, but that is not stopping the club from making improvements for the stretch run.

The Rapids signed Honduran veteran and former Wigan Athletic central midfielder Hendry Thomas Tuesday in an effort to bolster the club's quality in the center of the field while adding a player with immense experience. Thomas, 27, played for Wigan for the last three seasons and is a veteran on the international circuit, having played in the 2008 Olympics, the 2010 FIFA World Cup and the last four CONCACAF Gold Cups for Los Catrachos.

Thomas had lost his place in Wigan's lineup last season but played 63 games in all competitions for the Latics in the previous two seasons after joining the Premier League side from Honduran club Olimpia.

"Adding Hendry to our group gives us an important player on the field who brings a lot of experience," Rapids coach Oscar Pareja said in a statement. "He’s a powerful midfielder who can break up attacks and can help solidify the center of the field for us. We are very excited to have him here."

Here are a couple of more items from around MLS:

FCD SIGN ARGENTINE STRIKER

Striker depth has been an issue for FC Dallas this season, but the club took a step in finding the remedy for that by adding Argentine forward Matias Jara, who most recently played for second-division club Guillermo Brown in his native country.

Jara, 25, steps in for forward Ruben Luna, who was loaned to the NASL's San Antonio Scorpions on Monday. With Blas Perez still on the comeback trail from his personal leave/injury layoff, Dallas has struggled to find a consistent presence up top, with Scott Sealy and young academy product and U.S. U-20 forward Jonathan Top filling in. Perez has missed Dallas' last 12 games and has not played since May 26 while nursing a foot injury but is said to be nearing his return.

PAULSON BACKS WILKINSON

Portland Timbers general manager and interim coach Gavin Wilkinson has come under fire for the club failing to turn in improved results since he took over at the helm for the ousted John Spencer, but he has the backing of his owner.

Timbers owner Merritt Paulson voiced his support for Wilkinson in the aftermath of the club's 3-2 loss to the New York Red Bulls Sunday, a game which the Timbers led 2-0 but could not close out. They are 0-5-2 with Wilkinson in charge.

"Gavin is not going anywhere," Paulson told The Oregonian. "More big changes is not what this team needs right now.

"We've stripped the team down and are implementing a whole new system. What we're doing now is starting to bear some fruit. Our statistics are up and even though our wins are not, we're starting to play on the road like we do at home. We're scoring goals and playing attractive soccer.

"I feel the fans' frustration is justifiable, but it is misdirected at Gavin."

TFC LOCKS UP HENRY FOR LONG TERM

Toronto FC Homegrown Player Doneil Henry has signed a new deal with Toronto FC, inking a long-term contract with the club. Exact terms of the deal were undisclosed, but it is a sign that the club views Henry, 19, as part of the long-term solution in the back.

The first player to sign with TFC out of the club's academy, Henry has played in 17 matches this season, starting 11 of those. He has represented Canada on both the senior and youth levels, and he scored the eventual game-winning goal for Canada's U-23s against the United States in Olympic qualifying in march.

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What do you think of the addition of Thomas for Colorado? Do you see Jara being able to impact FC Dallas' attack? Do you think FCD can make a push for the playoffs in the West? What do you think needs to be done to turn the Timbers around? Is getting rid of Wilkinson the answer? Do you see Henry developing into a star defender for TFC?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in MLS- Colorado Rapids, MLS- FC Dallas, MLS- Portland Timbers, MLS- Toronto FC. Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to MLS Notes: Rapids sign Honduran veteran Thomas, FCD add striker & more

  1. Hendry Thomas is a big signing no? EPL starter for mid-table team.

  2. chris says:

    Schellas sure does love his South Americans

  3. chris says:

    He lost his spot at Wigan

  4. Darwin says:

    Blas Pérez  ‏@superraton7
    Dear Dallas!! @FCDallas @fcdallasbuzztap @Inferno_FCD @TheBigDSports I wanted 2 tweet this long time ago #MedicalClearance for me!!! #DTID

  5. Darwin says:

    Blas returns to training with FCD…Schellas gets a striker for depth and rewards Luna with a loan to keep him off of the bench…Top is in good form despite being extremely raw…

    The West is about to get shaken up!

  6. Vic says:

    Surprised Thomas couldn’t find another team in EPL or Championship. He was a solid player for 3 years in the EPL and still only 27.

  7. Excellency says:

    Dallas should spend some money to buy Wenger from Montreal since he isn’t even getting any minutes there anyway. How much could he cost? He will start getting them goals right away.

  8. RK says:

    You’re wrong. Wigan isn’t mid-table.

  9. Darwin says:

    Dallas needs some experience up top. Wenger was able to knock a few in on his team, but at Dallas, we need a forward that is well connected and able to play off Shea, Castillo, and Ferriera in tight spaces.

  10. balls says:

    If he is not getting minutes in Montreal, he might not be able to get minutes in Dallas. Hyndman is strange when it comes to young guys and minutes

  11. The Imperative Voice says:

    My impression of Dallas when I watched their game at Houston in person was that they were fairly sharp in the middle third but swiss cheese in the back and wasteful up top. Dallas would get the ball into the wings and then nothing would happen after that. They could really use a difference maker, someone tall or fast. They’re close enough to playoff spots where they could make a splash.

    That being said, 5 goals from Castillo and Perez sounds OK until you realize there are teams out there getting that and more from single players, eg, Wondo, Saborio, Cooper, Henry. Even Houston has 10 from Bruin. Which then correlates to table position. The GD has improved over the season but most of the playoff teams punch it in more often.

    So, in theory picking up a forward might be wise but the inkling I get of an Argentine second division baller replacing a loan player while Perez remains out, is that this is roster filler at the Luna level and not an immediate attempt to address the need area.

  12. The Imperative Voice says:

    I doubt he couldn’t find a team in England, this is probably a choice. Maybe he wants to be in a higher dollar league than Honduras but close to home. Maybe he wants assured playing time under his coaches’ noses to see if he can sneak into the Honduras team. I don’t think being in England alone does much for you if you’re not playing.

    I hope Colorado has him signed on into 2013 because I think they’re almost too far adrift to have a real shot at this year’s playoffs. If he’s a one season rental this is a waste, he’s a DM not a scorer.

    I wonder what Rapids fans think of their present trajectory considering the organization’s eagerness to dispatch Gary Smith, who then went over to Stevenage and took them to the FA Cup 5th round (including earning a Hotspur replay) and to the 1st Division playoffs. While the Bravo/Pareja regime flounders.

    Thomas sounds like a good role player for next year and going forward but not like something to turn it around this season…

  13. Rory says:

    We’re pretty pi**ed about it. We didn’t really see the need for a full rebuild when we thought we needed a DM to replace Pablo who was getting on in age and some depth at forward because Cummings and Casey have hit the injury bug. I personally don’t think bringing in Freeman and letting Kos go was any improvement.
    If we had let Gary Smith spend a little money to bring in a few players we would have been better off.

  14. Brian says:

    no, no, no, and one more time .. no. Thomas is Honduran. Honduras is in Centrsl America.

  15. Brian says:

    lol my apologies…yea hyndman sure loves going down there lol

  16. bigprof says:

    going down there? huh? is this chat still about footie, or are you accusing hyndman and SMU of being another Penn st?

  17. bigprof says:

    thomas may also have seen how much of a beast Espinoza was at the olympics and how Chavez has Quakes in the top and said “honduras knows how to make pupusas in mls”. yeah, this probably a Seedorf-going-home move

  18. Darwin says:

    Excellent impression of Dallas. And now I hope you can conclude that the team you saw in Houston on June 16th was a different team. At the time, Andrew Jacobson was Dallas’s best field player, with Hartman keeping the scores low.

    The back line: Pertuz and Hedges start. These two first-year players have done a decent job filling in and Hedges has kept his spot while Ihemelu recovers from a May concussion. Hedges has improved, but still is miles away from Captain Ugo.

    The midfield: Leyva fills in for Ferriera, and Brek is out with turf toe. Castillo starts up top.

    The forwards: Castillo starts out of position, and is forced to play off of Scott Sealy.

    The formation: 4-4-2 with Sealy playing high and no true wingers.

    Fast-forward to today. Dallas does have that difference maker in Ferriera. Perez is back to training and will probably end the season on 8 or 9 goals. (he had 5 in 13 matches on an early season out of form team). Add DeGuzman, and a depth striker who is game fit to share minutes with Perez, and Dallas looks poised for a playoff push.

    Realistically, they will raise the competition in the West, but fall short and have a good foundation for 2013. But you cant help but root for a team that fought the injury bug all season and still has a chance.

  19. Jason says:

    Smith didn’t exactly take Stevenage to the 5th round or the playoffs. He took over the club after they won their 4th round game and they were in the final playoff spot at that time. He got a 0-0 draw against Spurs to force a 5th round replay that they lost, and they finished the season in the final playoff spot, then losing in the first round.

    He kept them stable and in the playoffs, but most of that work was done by the prior manager.

  20. Les says:

    GW Out!!

  21. Big Chil says:

    I’m not pissed at all. Helluva pedigree, strong signing. I think Pareja is looking for the single DM who can play in a true 4-3-3 or 4-1-3-2 next season. There’re 9 games left, and I bet his contract for next year is not guaranteed if they don’t like the way he looks.

  22. Big Chil says:

    I see you were replying to TIV’s broader question about the Rapids season above, sorry, bruv.

    I didn’t think this season was a total rebuild–Pareja has definitely improved the quality of the roster, and the core of the championship side is still there. I thought this was going to be a great year for us.

    Overall, despite the losing record, the Rapids have outshot and outpossessed opponents in almost every game. Losing has been frustrating, especially since we score first in half the games.

  23. RLW2020 says:

    overall ‘pid fans are not happy with Pareja yet, but we are willing to give him time.. There are some more longer term issues that it appears he is working on.

    The Thomas signing is good, seems like a great player in a good point of his career, more than we ever expected! however the real need is CB. Not sure how long Marvell Wynne has left in CO and there is no one else ready to fill in..