For two years running, D.C. United General Manager Dave Kasper has been a busy man as the secondary MLS transfer window closes. Last year, he brought in Paul Arriola, Russell Canouse, Zoltan Stieber, and Bruno Miranda on the final day. This year, after making a big splash with Wayne Rooney to start the window, Kasper finalized deals for Bill Hamid and Vytas on deadline day.
That’s potentially five different starters that could reasonably be expected to be on the field for United’s strongest unit.
Last year though, the end of the window didn’t mean the end of business. Kasper brought in Steve Clark as United began to prepare for life without Hamid, who would go on to sign a contract with FC Midtjylland in Denmark.
There might be a couple of similar options for pick-ups this year, but don’t expect any more moves for United, who are currently maxed out on senior roster spots. Due to Taylor Kemp’s season-ending injury, United could add a Season-Ending Injury Replacement Player, though they would not receive salary budget relief.
“You know when you ask that kind of question to the GM, I’m always going to say I’m looking,” Kasper said in response to a question poised by B&RU at Friday’s press conference introducing Hamid and Vytas. “But we’re happy with where we are at right now.”
For United to add another player, they would have to be a free agent. That leaves few options, though according to Kasper, he now feels that the team is just about suited to where they need to be depth-wise, around the field.
“We are at least two deep in every position,” added Kasper.
United are as healthy right now as they have been all season, with recent returns from injury for Canouse, Ulises Segura, and Kofi Opare. Taylor Kemp is out for the year, while Nick DeLeon, who recently had surgery on his knee, is out for an undetermined period of time. But those two are the only members of the team currently sidelined with injury, as United look to reel in a playoff spot from the bottom position in the Eastern Conference.
“This is the group we are prepared to go to war with,” said Kasper. “We are excited about this group, so I would think this is our group.”