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MLS Draft preview

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I don't claim to follow college soccer very closely. But it's this time every year that I sort of wish that I did.

Luckily there are plenty of other writers who do. Such as Buzz Carrick, who has ranked the goalkeepers, defenders, midfielders, and forwards in this year's draft class. Or the Philly ASN page, who aggregated the mock drafts of several other soccer bloggers so we didn't have to.

I'm not here to do a mock draft of my own. I'm more concerned specifically with the needs that DC United will be attempting to address tomorrow. With Luciano Emilio departing for Brazil and Jaime Moreno another year older, the team could certainly use another forward to partner with Chris Pontius. We also have a sudden lack of depth in central midfield, with Ben Olsen retiring, Andrew Jacobson moving on to Philadelphia, and Danny Szetela yet to prove himself. United's defensive struggles have plagued the team heavily over the past several seasons, and the team has yet to find a consistent starting goalkeeper.

So who do the experts think DC United will draft? As you might expect, it's all over the place. But here are some possibilities that have been linked to DCU in one mock draft or another:

Goalkeepers: Sean Johnson

Defenders: Ike Opara, Ofori Sarkodie

Midfielders: Toni Stahl, Tony Tchani, Corben Bone, Dilly Duka, Blair Gavin, Amobi Okugo

Forwards: Andre Akpan

It's hard to get a true feel for what DC United is likely to do. But one thing I do know is that the team has not drafted a defender in the first round of the Superdraft since David Stokes in 2003.

I think United would have an awful hard time passing on Tchani (UVA) or Bone (Wake) if either was to fall to #7, but I don't think either will. We're more likely to wind up with a utility midfielder like Stahl (Conn) or Gavin (Akron).

What do you think the team should do?