In case you haven't caught it - James Riley, a seasoned right fullback, has tweeted that he is joining United. Riley brings a pedigree of experience with perhaps the step that Robbie Russell might now be lacking, and will probably decrease his chances of seeing significant playing time behind a quickly developing Chris Korb. Riley has seen long stints at New England Revolution and Seattle Sounders before being drafted in the 2011 expansion draft to Chivas USA.
Riley brings with him a 120,000 dollar contract (2012), which on the surface might miff a little bit, considering our lack of depth at CB and the wings, and our approach of the $2.95(?) million salary cap. But come hither, as this does give Benny O some interesting options:
Fullbacks: Korb, Russell, Woolard, Riley, Kemp (Kitchen, White, LEWIS NEAL)
Center backs: McDonald, Jakovic, White, Shanosky
Though we have been worried about the ability to cope with injuries to the backline, Riley's signing gives us the ability to take advantage of some of our fullbacks' versatility and ability to play effectively at CB (namely Russell and Woolard) in the wake of midseason knocks or yellow cards (and Canadian sabotage). I wouldn't be surprised to see one more low-wage signing at CB, considering Shanosky's suspected loan to the Kickers. But the front office also may try to hold off and save some room for the offensive potential of some of our trial players (Sanchez, Richter, Porter).
Considering some of the versatility of our journeymen midfielders, I can't say I would be too worried with the current defensive lineup.