Friday, January 29, 2010

Ian Walker rumors

A site in the UK was citing me as the source stating the Wizards were close to signing Ian Walker. I did not say that. I only reported that he was in the invitee tryouts.

As far as I know the only thing he signed while he was here was a poster. The official tweet from the Wizards in response to the rumor was "Walker is on trial, but reports that he's signing are premature. He's trying to make the squad like others in camp."

He has not been in camp this week but that tweet does make me wonder if he is coming back to join the team in Arizona.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Wizards camp 2010 - Day 3

Josh and Jimmy were back in camp. They had been at the CBA negotiations with the league.

Today was all about fitness testing. This was the second day of fitness testing, the first was Tuesday. The players ran a series of 30 yard dashes, I think each player ran 5 or 6 in a row to see how the times changed.

Once there was enough players done with the dash to form a group, they did the beep test. There was a total of 4 groups.The beep test is a back and forth shuttle type run to the pace of prerecorded beeps. They get a couple chances to not make the turn in time and then they are out. It is a standard test and fitness can be measured in "steps" and compared against players around the world.

The winners (longest lasting in each group) were:
Conrad
Souter -Kevin had a really good score and got an ovation from all the rest of the players
Cardenas mostly draft picks and trialists
Moldavan Trialist #2

Auvray might be at practice Friday so hopefully we get to see him as the team gets back to actual training.

Wizards training camp players list

Here is my best list of all the players of interest at the moment

Returning players in camp:
Arnaud, Davy
Besler, Matthew
Cristman, Adam
Conrad, Jimmy
Espinoza, Rodger
Harrington, Michael
Hercegfalvi, Zoltan
Hirsig, Santiago
Hohlbein, Aaron
Jewsbury, Jack - recovering from off-season surgery
Kraus, Michael
Leathers, Jonathan
McKenzie, Rauwshan
Morsink, Kurt
Myers, Chance
Pardo, Boris
Souter, Kevin
Watson, Lance - recovering from injury
Wolff, Josh
Zusi, Graham

Draft picks:
Bunbury, Teal - F 2010 1st round pick
Cardenas, Nicholas - D 2010 3rd round pick
Fuzetti, Mauro - M 2010 3rd round pick
Sarkodie, Ofori - D 2010 4th round pick

Other Wizards not in camp yet:
Auvray, Stephane - M should be at practice on Friday
Escobar, Pablo - D should join team in Arizona
"Left side attacking player" - M have to assume he does not have a visa yet
Hartman, Kevin - GK not in camp, not under contract
Kamara, Kei - F not in camp, not under contract
Kronberg, Eric - GK in camp, not participating, likely not under contract
Lopez, Claudio - M not under contract (may not see him back)
Aiyegbusi, Olukorede - D has not reported, finishing some school items

Trialists in camp:
Brown, Kyle Aaron - F, Austin Aztex, Houston, Real Salt Lake, New England (drafted)
Crayton, Louis - GK DC United, Liberian National Team
Gehrig, Eric - M Loyola
Glaeser, Matt - GK Hartford, Pallo-Iirot
Horwath, Alex - GK Wisconsin
Kemenes, Szabolcs - GK MTK Hungaria, Hungarian U-21,20,19,17 teams
Pizzaro, Nelson - M Miami FC, Kansas City Wizards
Moldovan Trialist #1 - M ******
Moldovan Trialist #2 - M ******
(Withholding the names of the two Moldovan trialists as requested)
Possibly more joining team in Arizona

On Trialist list (not in camp now):
Walker, Ian - GK Bolton, Leicester City, Tottenham Hotspur
(maybe he will join the team in Arizona)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Wizards camp 2010 - Day 2

The team did normal warm up type stuff and then broke into groups. The keepers went down to one end and the field players split into 3 teams and played small keep away type games to warm up for ahwile. Then they played some small side scrimmages without goals.

The next activity was a small field full size goal scrimmage between the three teams. Teal Bunbury one timed a shot past the keeper who had no chance for the first goal of pre-season. Shortly after sending a shot way off target (may have hit the Taco Bueno at CAB), Nelson Pizzaro put a sweet shot into the top corner for the second goal of camp. The third goal was scored by Davy Arnaud. At least I think it was Davy, I was trying to tweet Nelson's goal when I looked up and saw a rocket sliding under the bar. Davy looked happy and the person next me thought it was Davy also so I am giving him credit.

After rotating all the teams and keepers through the scrimmage, the team did some shooting drills. A few variations were run through, different run patterns, different passes (in air, opposite foot, etc...) while all the keepers would face two shots and switch in and out.

For the first day of camp playing on turf in an indoor facility, the passing looked pretty good. The rookies all looked like they want to be here and at least showed why they were drafted.
There are several trialists in camp. I know the name of couple and I am trying to find out the rest. I will respect the team's wishes to not publish names while they decide to put in claims or not.

At least one of the field players there on trial is from Europe. At first glance I thought Vincenzo Bernardo had returned but it was not him.

I know I am only basing this opinion on two days of camp but it looks like there is competition for every spot on the field and on the roster (with a couple exceptions).

I have a couple interviews that I will post later tonight.

Players status and observations

In camp
Davy Arnaud - looked like Davy
Matt Besler - looks like he may have bulked up a bit
Teal Bunbury - looks very athletic and fast, moved around the ball pretty good
Adam Cristman - had a couple good shots
Michael Harrington - looks ready to play, made a great play to save ball off the line
Zoltan Hercegfalvi - had a couple decent chances
Santiago Hirsig -
Aaron Hohlbein -
Michael Kraus -
Jonathan Leathers -
Rauwshan McKensie -
Kurt Morsink -
Chance Myers -
Boris Pardo -
Kevin Souter -
Graham Zusi - looked dangerous at times
Nick Cardenas - can't wait to see him on a corner kick
Mauro Fuzetti - handled the ball well, had some nice shots in drills but was the last finisher in the shooting game at the end so had to run a lap without uniform
Ofori Sarkodie - looked composed, heads up

In camp invitees
Louis Crayton - former DC United keeper trying out
Trialist 1 - some guy from Europe, thought he was Vincenzo Bernardo at first, but is not
Trialist 2 - another foreign player
Trialist GK 1 - was at the recent tryout and looks okay
Trialist GK 2 - Looked pretty solid while I was watching him
(the team may be filing discovery claims so will not reveal the names just yet)
There was another player working out today. He was there yesterday in street clothes and I thought he was an agent/friend/family but he was doing some fitness work today.

Not in camp
Kevin Hartman - not signed
Claudio Lopez - not signed
Kei Kamara - not signed
Josh Wolff - in New York for negotiations?
Jimmy Conrad - couple days off from National Team camp and may be in New York for negotioations as well
Stephane Auvray - will join club this week
Pablo Escobar - traveling, I think he will meet team in Arizona
Olukorede Aiyegbusi - has not reported, finishing some school items


In camp - not participating
Roger Espinoza - has a couple days off from National Team duty
Eric Kronberg - jogged but did not participate
Jack Jewsbury - recuperating from off season surgery
Lance Watson - was jogging and doing some light fitness work

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Roger Espinoza interview - 1/26/2010

Roger Espinoza had a great game with Honduras when they defeated the US last Saturday. Roger played a part in the first two goals and scored the third, possibly securing a spot for himself on the Honduran World Cup team.

Ofori Sarkodie interview - 1/26/2010

Ofori Sarkodie was drafted in the fourth round by Kansas City. A defender from Indiana and a member of the U-17 and U-20 National Teams.

Ofori running a speed test...



I talked to him after practice today...

Mauro Fuzetti interview - 1/26/2010

Mauro Fuzetti at his first day of practice...

Mauro Fuzetti, a midfielder from the University of Michigan was drafted in the third round by the Kansas City Wizards. I talked to him briefly today.

Wizards camp 2010 - Day 1

First day of practice for 2010 was all about fitness testing. Beep tests, speed tests and all manner of running took place at the Indoor Practice Facility.

The dreaded beep test was run in two groups. Harrington won the first group with Hohlbein a close second. Kraus and Souter both went out at together to win the second group.

Tomorrow will be some soccer skills and Thursday will be more fitness testing.

Auvray and Escobar are not in camp yet. Auvray will be here this week and Escobar will join the team in Arizona.

While I do not have all the names, here is a rundown on the status of as many players as I can remember. I will try to get as many invitees names tomorrow as possible.

Not in camp
Kevin Hartman - not signed
Claudio Lopez - not signed
Kei Kamara - not signed
Josh Wolff - in New York for negotiations?
Jimmy Conrad - couple days off from National Team camp and may be in New York for negotioations as well
Stephane Auvray - will join club this week
Pablo Escobar - traveling

In camp - not participating
Roger Espinoza - has a couple days off from National Team duty
Eric Kronberg - not sure why

In camp
Davy Arnaud
Matt Besler
Teal Bunbury
Adam Cristman -
Michael Harrington
Zoltan Hercegfalvi -
Santiago Hirsig
Aaron Hohlbein
Jack Jewsbury
Michael Kraus
Jonathan Leathers
Rauwshan McKensie
Kurt Morsink
Chance Myers
Boris Pardo
Kevin Souter
Josh Wolff
Graham Zusi
Nick Cardenas
Mauro Fuzetti
Ofori Sarkodie

In camp invitees
Louis Crayton - former DC United keeper trying out
There are some others but I do not have all the names yet

Did not see and do now know why
Matt Marquess - Update: Matt retired from soccer
Lance Watson - was told he coming off an injury
Olukorede Aiyegbusi - has not reported, finishing some school items

More photos here

Teal Bunbury


One of two groups


Two of two groups


Vermes and Hirsig sharing a moment...