Friday, January 14, 2011

Danny Waltman interview - 1/12/2011

Missouri Comets keeper Danny Waltman had one of his best games at home in their win over the Riot.

I talked with Danny after practice this week.

Peter Vermes comments on the draft

Sporting Kansas City's Manager Peter Vermes comments on players taken in the 2011 MLS Super Draft:

CJ Sapong - James Madison University - Forward - 1st round (10th overall)

We had two guys we had identified for the tenth pick, one was Sapong and one was Jalil Anibaba. So we were interested in both and both could fit. We are extremely happy with CJ. We think what he does is he fits very well into the way we play from an attack perspective. We think he has a pretty high ceiling here in this league. We walked away extremely happy with what we were able to get with that guy (Sapong). He's very explosive and extremely powerful, plays really well with his back to the goal. If you look at his stats they will tell you that he has a good goal to assist ratio which means he can do both but he really has a nose for the goal.

JT Murray - University of Louisville Defender/Mid - 2nd Round (32nd Overall)

Take into consideration that this year we have quite a few things that are going to put some pressure on us with as many guys we have playing on their National Team with Shavar, Auvray, Teal, Espinoza. We got to make sure we have some cover in those positions as well, we felt that we needed someone on the left. JT Murray's qualities are that he was a midfileder, he makes great decisions on the ball, he's very calm and as you know we play out of the back quite a bit and try to build from the back out where are outside backs need to be on the ball quite a bit. He a guy that does that part of the position really, really well. It was good to be able to get him when we did.

Konrad Warzycha - Ohio State - Midfielder 3rd Round (46th Overall)
We did pretty good with our first Dad who played MLS and then his son came out and we draft him in Teal and now with Robert Warzycha, it's the same thing. It's his son, he comes from a good lineage and we've watched him play many times in college and think he is technically and tactically very sound. He's got a great long distance shot in the midfield.

You did not take a defender in the first round as so many thought you would, do you have other plans?

It's very difficult to pick up a central defender just out of college that can have an impact right away. For us it was trying to get guys who are impact players that can come right away and help us. So we have identified more than a few guys that we are working with to try to secure that in the next 2 to 3 or 4 weeks as we move into the early part of pre-season.

Would have Anibaba been one that could have stepped in right away or at least competed for that spot?

I think he has the ability to do that, but I still think that when you bring in a young guy you are always going to have the part of the process you have to face, you are going to face rookie mistakes. I'm not saying that he's going to have that bit it's always part of the process. Even Tim Ream last year with New York. You bring those guys in and it's part of the experience that they get . For us we are trying to maybe be a little bit more, go with some more experience in those positions right now.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Q&A with C.J. Sapong

Q&A with C. J. Sapong from James Madison University. C.J. was selected in the first round (10th overall) by Sporting Kansas City.

Were you expecting to go to Kansas City?

I wasn't expecting Kansas City, I did have a very good feeling after I met with them the second day at the combine, they were the first team to contact me. The interview we had went really well, I felt really good vibes from them. Sitting down I was just trying to enjoy the experience as much as possible and take it all in. I'm not going to lie, I was taken by surprise when I was taken with the tenth pick. As soon as my name was called I was elated. I was very excited, talked with the coaches briefly and all the staff. Its sounds like we are heading in a nice new direction and it is great that I get to start my career while their starting this direction.
Some mock drafts had you being selected in the 2nd but not in the first, did that surprise you?

I didn't try to dwell on those mock drafts too much, simply because being at JMU for 4 years I did not get a lot of recognition and I tried to never dwell on it. If anything I tried to use it as motivational tool. It was exciting to see that somebody thought I was going to get picked. Coming into the combine, that was my goal, just to get picked. Getting the first round pick is just beyond my dreams right now.

Know anything about the team?

I know the rebranding, I know the stadium is opening June 9th. The playing style, I will be able to fit into that, going at defenders, attacking, attacking, having pride in your one on one capabilities. I'm going to do a lot more research, all the history on Sporting Kansa City. I'm going to eat, sleep, breathe Kansas City.

Like BBQ?

I LOVE Barbeque. Oh my God. I am going to have to check it out real quick.
How would you describe your playing style?

Explosive, strong on the ball, around the box is where I thrive. I have a nose for the goal and I play with a chip on my shoulder. I'm going to work hard and even harder in the box. Look for as lot of little tap ins and once in awhile that spectacular goal. I have that in me some times. I'm just looking forward to being on that pitch and playing for Kansas City.

You are listed as a forward at JMU, do you play any mid?

At JMU, I played out wide, I played attacking midfielder. I think that was good, I added a couple things to my game, looking for other players, getting other players involved. Also at those positions, probably the biggest thing I had to get used to was the defensive part of the game. Getting back and getting behind the ball. I think playing those positions helped set me up well, even when I'm up top I work hard playing defense. I pride myself getting a couple steals off of defenders each game.
When out wide, left or right or does it matter?

It doesn't really matter. I'm pretty good with my left foot and I like both cutting in so any side I'm on is fine for me. I like cutting in or going down the line.

Anything to say to fans?

I hope the BBQ is good and I hope you're ready to cheer, cheer your heads off when the stadium opens on June 9th.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

MLS Draft 2011 - What should be Sporting Kansas City's strategy?

On the eve of the 2011 MLS draft, I was wondering what fans think Sporting Kansas City should do tomorrow?

Lots of mock draft have had Kansas City taking Jalil Anibaba from UNC but with his strong combine the latest predictions have him going higher than Kansas City's pick in the tenth spot. The latest mock draft from Ives has Sporting taking US U-20 forward Omar Salgado. Will Technical Director/Head Coach Peter Vermes draft to fill an immediate need? Take the best player available? Or go for a longer term prospect that will contribute in a couple years? Will he find another player with Teal Bunbury's potential?

I do not put a lot of faith in mock drafts (even from Ives) but I am interested in what Kansas City fans think the team should do.

Should Sporting Kansas City draft:

  • the best available central defender?
  • a midfielder?
  • a forward?
  • best player available regardless of position?
  • John Rooney for the name buzz?

I put a poll up on the right, let me know what you think...

Missouri Comets notes - 1/12/2011

I will have an interview with Comets keeper Danny Waltman up later but I wanted to note a few things from practice today.

Will John - The Comets wanted to extend his 15 day contract but were unable to do so.

Jamie Harding - It is my understanding that the Comets will be keeping him around past his initial 15 day contract. Not sure if that is another 15 day contract or something longer.

There were a few new faces this morning practicing/trialing with the team.

It sounds like there may be some additional roster moves coming as the team continues to work on improving their roster.

Jimmy Conrad farewell party (and CPC Benefit)

Child Protection Center (one of Jimmy's favorites in Kansas City) is throwing him a good bye party before he heads to California to train with Chivas. At least it's not DC United!!!

Head out to the 810 Zone on the Plaza and wish Jimmy well (when he is not playing against Kansas City). He is considering combing his hair for the event so be prepared to take photos!

There is a raffle to benefit CPC also. A $10 ticket gets you a chance of winning a game worn Conrad Wizards jersey or a Chivas jersey or 2 tickets to the Chivas - Sporting KC game.

Please RSVP to:

Monday, January 10, 2011

Comets 11 - 9 Chicago Riot

The Comets first game winning goal at home...

The Missouri Comets were happy to notch their first home win, even if it did take overtime. " A monkey off our back, it wasn't the prettiest game out there, but we certainly found a way to win" Coach Roentved commented post game.

The Comets jumped out to an early lead with a goal by Byron Alvarez just 40 seconds into the match followed by Beasley's first at 2:26. Chicago cut their deficit with a goal by Duda at 12:29 and then Megson scored 40 seconds in the second quarter to go into the half tied.

Chicago's Marojevic gave the Riot their first lead of the game with a three pointer at 3:37 of the third. The Comets Brian Harris with his own three pointer at 9:14 to tie it back up.

Brian Harris (#25) celebrating with fans...

Chicago would again go on top with a goal by Berenzon at 2:54. The Comets killed a 2 minute tripping penalty to Stefan Stokic and the Comets gained control just as he came out of the box. Vahid Assadpour played the ball up to a streaking Jamar Beasley. With Stokic making the run on the other side of the field, Beasley slotted his second goal past Riot keeper Jeff Richey to again tie the game.

With regulation time completed, the teams went into a sudden death overtime. After a horrible free kick Jamie Harding intercepted the ball and played an excellent pass off the wall to Beasley racing up field. Jamar held off the defender and slid the ball past the Riot keeper to score the game winner and complete the hat trick.

Jamar Beasley celebrating by leaping and throwing his jersey to fans...

While the Comets were the better team most of the evening, they did have some stretches where they did not play well and gave up goals a little too easily. With attacking veterans Tiguinho and Geison Moura injured, Leo Gibson moved back to the defense to help out for the missing Jeff Davis and team Captain Nate Houser, Coach Roentved was playing more rookies than he would have liked. Those rookies are getting some valuable experience though to help the team down the stretch. Lucas Rodriguez played well (with the exception of a couple shots).

More photos


It's just a good feeling to win our first game at home and to get the winning goal and really just helping my team.
Jamar Beasley

I knew it was coming, I knew this team had the heart and desire to go out and get another win, especially after a big win in Milwaukee.
Brian Harris

We have confidence but at the same time we are 3 and 6, we got to keep working out way up. We need to be a lot smarter when we go up and not let the other team to get back in the game.
Jamar Beasley

Post game interviews:

Coach Roentved

Jamar Beasley

Brian Harris