Red Bulls include Richards in Conde offer


The Red Bulls pursuit of Chicago defender Wilman Conde has reached a new level.

According to sources within Major League Soccer, the Red Bulls have included midfielder Dane Richards in a large offer to Chicago for Conde, an offer the Fire appears to have turned down.

This word comes just four days after Conde went public with a request to be traded to the Red Bulls in order to be reunited with his long-time coach, Juan Carlos Osorio.

News of Richards’ inclusion in a trade offer for Conde comes as surprise after Red Bulls officials had spent the off-season identifying Richards along with Juan Pablo Angel and Jozy Altidore as three players the club would not trade under any circumstances.

The runner-up for MLS rookie of the year honors in 2007, Richards had been seen as a perfect right midfield option for the Fire but there is a growing belief among league observers that Chicago has no intention of trading Conde.

If not Richards, then who? If Chicago won’t accept a package including Dane Richards then the Red Bulls and Fire are unlikely to be able to complete a Conde trade. One source within the league believes that Chicago ownership has essentially put up a ‘Not For Sale’ sign on Conde, particularly with regard to the Red Bulls.

Conde is in Florida training with the Fire and has yet to do anything more than issue his public trade request on Saturday. It remains unclear whether the Colombian defender is prepared to hold out in order to facilitate a trade, or a potential transfer out of MLS.

What do you think of this development? Fire fans, would you take a package of Dane Richards, Jeff Parke or Carlos Mendes, a first-round draft pick and cash for Conde? Red Bulls fans, would you give that up for Conde? Neutral observers, do you think Chicago is crazy or smart for turning down a package incuding Richards?

Share your thoughts below and PLEASE keep it civil (looking at you Red Bulls and Fire fans).

This entry was posted in Major League Soccer, MLS- Chicago Fire, MLS- New York Red Bulls. Bookmark the permalink.

95 Responses to Red Bulls include Richards in Conde offer

  1. EDB says:

    Well I think a couple weeks ago I would have taken it. But now with the public request , and Luis reporting that they will most likely play Rofle at right mid after signing Frankowski(s/p) and the other players on trial I think we need Conde more then a Right mid

  2. Steve says:

    That’s the one chip on the Red Bulls roster that was of ‘fair’ value and not ‘untouchable’.

    If that package is accurate then I think the Fire move into cut off your nose to spite your face territory to not work it out.

    I’m a Fire fan and now its a fair deal.

  3. IVES – “Fire fans, would you take a package of Dane Richards, Jeff Parke or Carlos Mendes, a first-round draft pick and cash for Conde? Red Bulls fans, would you give that up for Conde?”

    #1 – I dont care what round or what pick he was found, but Jeff Parke NEEDS to stay in New York. The combination of pure size that he, Brunner and Stammler would provide to the D would be unheard of in this league.

    #2 – Any Chicago fan would jump at that trade. It stinks.

    #3 – As a Bulls fan, I wouldnt mind Richards and Doe being involved in a trade. Hell, throw the two of them and a first rounder, or second. But no Parke. Even Mendes, who I loved as a defender last year, would be too much to add to this. If Mendes is included, take away any picks.

    #4 – Chicago. Ugh.

  4. tsingletonvt says:

    As a Revs fan with no preference between the Red Bulls and the Fire, I think that Chicago should make this deal. I believe this deal would be solid for Chicago since Conde has apparently tied his future in MLS to Osorio. What happens if Osorio leaves RBNY for some reason in the next two years to coach elsewhere in MLS or overseas? I can see Conde wanting out of New York just as he has decided he wants out of Chicago.

    If that scenario plays out then Chicago has Richards, Jeff Parke or Carlos Mendes, a first-round draft pick and cash. If Conde and Osorio do stay in NY for some time then Chicago still has Richards, Jeff Parke or Carlos Mendes, a first-round draft pick and cash. Not a bad gamble considering coaching tenures in NY.

  5. Mikemike says:

    As a NY fan, I am glad deal was turned down, but I think Chicago made a poor decision. Richards, though predictable, is a force defences must account for, therefore freeing up other players in the box.

    Ives, any idea if Dane got a raise this year?


  6. Andrew says:

    I’m a neutral observer, and i hope chicago keeps Conde. That being said, I think getting Parke, Richards, a first round pick, and cash for Conde is a great deal. And I also think that having a key cog in your system be a disgruntled one who wants out can wreak havoc on a team.
    But still, I hope chicago keeps conde. The only reason for this is so that Chicago can keep some iota of pride and dignity. As an outside observer, Chicago has looked like a total pu$$y this offseason. It’s embarassing really, they’re like a little kid being bullied out of his lunch money on the playground by some big aryan-looking exchange student from Austria. Chicago NEEDS to show that they won’t be bullied by NYRB again. They need to take a hard stance with Conde and tell him that if he wants to see the field at all this season, it’ll be in a Fire kit. Have some respect for yourself, Chicago, no matter what deals they throw at you, tell RB to shove it, tell Conde to stop crying and play. Unless you can negotiate a deal for Angel or Jozy, not like it would ever happen.

  7. Dannyc58 says:

    As a Red Bulls fan, I’m pretty upset with Osorio right now.

  8. Dannyc58 says:

    If the Red Bulls improve on this offer in anyway, well, I don’t want to say anything right now.

    We hold the cards! Conde would be a HUGE get, but let the situation play out, you don’t come with an offer like that. How stupid can a team be?

  9. Fuego Fanatico says:

    I don’t think Conde is going anywhere soon. Richards is a good start and has a bright future. As for Mendes and Parke, they stink (yes, they do) and they’d would not be able to start for the Fire. Brown, Robinson and Gutierrez (Diego can play as an ANC or SW) are better and the Fire also have T&T intl Osei Telesford waiting in the wings.

    Richards, an Intl slot (not dp), draft picks and allocation money. No other “available” player on the RBNY roster is even worth a used pair of shin guards to the Fire.

    Angel and Altidore are excellent (though Altidore will be unavailable for long stretches). Reyna may be able to dig deep and find something left in the tank. Richards has promise at a position the Fire has been desperate to fill. And that’s it. There isn’t another player on the RBNY roster who could compete with their Chicago Fire counterpart. Mapp and Segares are better on the left – it isn’t even close. Gutierrez, Pause and Soumare have got the def. mid covered so stop forcing an old Dema Kovalenko on us. Whether the Fire play 3 or 4 in the back, no Red Bull can play with Brown, Conde and Segares and Robinson has as much promise as Richards. The Fire have Blanco, Rolfe and Frankowski up top with Herron, Barrett and Carr as subs. Busch and Cervi are a drop from Pickens but is Conway better than Busch – probably not.

    The only things RBNY has available that is worth anything to the Fire is Richards, intl slots, draft picks and money.

  10. j1m says:

    I think New York should walk away from this. Let’s find another player with Conde’s talent and bring him to the league. It’s better for everyone.

  11. jgildea says:

    Osorio might want to keep in mind that offering a bunch of your current players for one former player is not likely to garner much loyalty in your new team. If no trade goes through what are these guys to think?

  12. If they are looking at giving up so much, maybe j1m is right.

  13. If no trade goes through, its no harm no foul. Conde is considered a big name already in the league. So he will be looked at as such by the current roster.

  14. mike ruze says:

    As a Fire fan the latest offer was acceptable.
    maybe too late for as the fire now have intl wingers in camp (besides signing Frankowski).

    However it seems Hauptman is rightfully stepping up to the plate and waving his middle finger at the tampering N J Metro Bulls.

    I cant imagine NJ offering anything better.

    This means 2 things:

    1. The Fire deem Conde invaluable and thus eyeing a legitimate championship run (Conde should realize its more legitimate than NJ’s).

    2.The bad blood between the clubs is at a boiling point to where even a miraculous Juan Pablo inclusion would be turned down.

  15. Paul Lorinczi says:

    I think it is all bad Karma.

    I think Osorio should back off now and focus on building his team without Conde. I think he is nuts for even considering Dane Richards. He was a rookie last year, this year should be his year to make an impact.

    i don’t think he should do it.

  16. I am with J1m… Just walk away from this deal JCO! PLease!!

  17. Trex says:

    As a Red Bull Fan, I wouldn’t lose sleep over the offer that was on the table, but at the same time I am starting to agree with others who said I think we should walk away at this point. Especially if they don’t accept a Richards package. Talk about holding a grudge by the Fire front office. If I were a Fire fan I’d want them to do whatever they could to make the team better. If they decided this trade wouldn’t do that that’s one thing, but if they are just blindly saying “Not for sale” that is ignorant and short changing the Fire fans IMO. What are we in grade school again??

  18. Fuego Fanatico says:

    Trex – Richards for Conde doesn’t make the Fire better than they would be if they kept Conde and put Rolfe or one of the intl invitees on the right.

  19. aristotle says:

    Wow. I’m glad NYRB was turned down! (Idiots!)While I’m sure Chicago means to be mean by doing this because of what happened with Osorio, they have actually helped NYRB a lot. I think if NYRB trades Richards, they will not only be a dull team, (I mean even more!) they will have a good chance of being last years RSL. I think they are looking pretty bad right now, as it is.

    This was Richard’s rookie year, and when he was on, he was exciting to watch and he caused havoc. There are very few players of this type in the league. I like Conde, but don’t take what could be the best part of your midfield and give that away. How are Altidore and Angel going to get the ball, just through Reyna’s dazzling service? I’m disliking Osorio more each day.

    I can’t believe someone said they are willing to give up Richards AND Doe in a trade, but not Park or Mendes! I have to agree with Fire fans on one thing, a lot of NYRB fans seem to be delusional about Mendes and Park! For crying out loud, they were on the bench quite a bit at times. How good are you when you can’t crack NYRB’s defense? I’d give up Park AND Mendes before I would let Richards go! Even Doe has a good chance of helping more than Park or Mendes. It’s amazing how we all watch the same games and can see things so differently. I don’t have a bias either way if anyone is wondering.

  20. queensman says:

    Chicago fans are nuts. I keep reading about Fire fans expecting a kings ransom for Conde. The fact is that Conde is the one who wants out, not NY who is begging for him. Add to that fact that Chicago seems to want DP value from a guy noone had ever heard about at this time last season, and who played a TOTAL of 7 regular season games last year, getting tossed out of 1 of them.

    Now they are suddenly claiming that he is the best defender in the league. Absolutely laughable. Weren’t the Galaxy fans claiming that Abel Xavier was the best defender in the league after his first 7 appearances last year? A few appearences later, and most of them would now dump him on the side of the street for Greg Vanney. Fire fans are delusional.

  21. furia yanqui says:

    That may be a fair deal on paper.

    In reality, however, I think it is invaluable to have a strong center back, not only to anchor the defense but also to build the attack calmly from the back forward. There are precious few players like that around here –just look at our national team, where against the best teams our defenders can only destroy opposition attacks and hoof the ball out of bounds.

    Conde, for me, is equal or even better than Bocanegra and Onyewu in this sense. The only better center backs I have seen in MLS are guys like Lubos Kubik, Marcelo Balboa or Eddie Pope at his best.

    The only drawback is if he is unhappy and doesn’t play to his best abilities. Maybe the Fire’s public declaration of love for him now will placate the big baby who has been crying for his favorite blankie.

  22. Erik Abarca says:

    I would hate to see Richards go. I cant see why Chicago will keep Conde thou, why keep a player that does’nt want to play for you. That can mean problems for them on the field, ruin team chemistry, etc…

  23. inkedAG says:

    I think all that is needed is patience.

    I read the threads the other day and if memory serves, Wilman Conde is under contract for only this upcoming season. Once the season is over, his obligation is fulfilled and he can go wherever he wants. Despite NY’s history, I believe JCO will be here for the 2009 season. So, when Conde is free, snatch him up. No need to give Chicago a thing and in a year’s time, we get who we want. Why break up our team for one player? If RBNY were to get Conde, it does not automatically mean a spot in MLS Cup. And if we were to get him and he has a spell where he doesn’t play up to expectations, the amount of bitching and the amount of Fire guffawing will know no bounds! Why take that risk? There’s a lot of games and a lot of other players involved who will get the team to the Cup, if we even get there at all.

    As Metro/RBNY fans, we are used to writing off seasons. While this situation is not a write-off, I am sure that there is someone on the team currently who can play Left back and do it reasonably well and then, when the time is right and Chicago is out of the playoffs, Wilman is ours. Win-win, no?

  24. regulator says:

    wow..i’m glad this was rejected by chicago. keep the damn team and improve on it JCO.. don’t start ripping it apart piece by piece in order to get new players.

  25. Curtis Spiteri says:

    THAT trade is exactly what I mentioned on your earlier Blog entry on Monday Ives.

    Richards, some other player, 1st round draft choice and cash is what I thought would be an acceptable and reasonable deal for our team.

    I’m not sure the deal is totally dead if RBNY offers enough/more cash. Richards definitely needs to be part of the deal, along with the 1st round draft pick. But HOW MUCH cash is probably the deal maker or breaker.

    Throwing in Mendes, Dema or Park will also be necessary but not the main ingredients needed for a deal. Richards, 1st rounder and enough cash to help sign one of our several international trialists will make the deal work.

    If that happens, I’d say adios Conde, and good luck when RBNY fires JCO if he doesn’t get the team to the MLS Finals.

  26. aristotl – Parke is super underrated. And Doe, though he did show us flashes last year, was still unproven on the pitch in my eyes, so i am a bit to the DONT CARE camp when it comes to Doe. Mendes, I will grant you, is blown up in my mind to a better defenseman than what he may be. But he was solid all season, and for MLS, he is up there in the ranks.

    In summation – Doe: no attachment, leave as you wish. Richards: Dont wanna give up unless the deal makes us measurabley better. Conde – Worth a look and sacrifice if we can land him.

  27. TwistedTidings says:

    Conde appeared to solve a lot of problems for the Fire. Richards was great last year and may have an even bigger upside. Parke’s been inconsistent, but definitely would play a role on the backlines of most MLS teams. In the abstract, Conde on one hand is outweighed by Richards/Parke/cash/first round pick.

    But would they help *Chicago* in particular? That’s the only question that matters. And frankly, I’m not certain. Chicago’s backline was an absolute mess before Conde.

  28. btw – take into consideration also that Jozy and Dane are best friends on the team. Maybe Dane has some pull to stay . . .

  29. sal says:

    To inkedAG, if Conde’s contract is due to expire after this year, the Fire would still possess his MLS rights for 2 more years. So just waiting for the offseason won’t work.

  30. Steve says:

    As a Fire fan, that’s the player I wanted all along. I think Richards would slot really well on the right side of our midfield, and if Conde doesn’t want to be in Chicago, ship him out.

    Queensman – I don’t think that Conde is the best defender in the league, but he is IMO included amongst the best.

  31. kpugs says:

    This is unbelievable. Uneffingbelievable. First we overcompensate those whining fools for a coach THAT DIDN’T WANT TO BE THERE.

    Now we are going to overcompensate them for a defender who’s best quality is that he’s left-footed?

    Unless I was watching some other Wilman Conde play for Chicago last year, this is a complete and utter joke and all we have done so far this offseason is make the Chicago Fire a BETTER TEAM. Is Alexi Lalas still secretly pulling the strings here in Jersey?

  32. Jamie says:

    I’m a TFC fan, living in Illinois, with a burning hatred for all Chicago sports teams, especially the Fire. If this offer was real, then once again the brain trust of a Chicago team has demonstrated they know not what they do.

  33. kpugs says:

    Just leave him be, let Chicago keep him. Please Mr. Osorio, please. If he wants out that bad let him go play in some other country, don’t trade your firstborn children for this guy.

  34. aristotle says:


    I just don’t see it. I think Richards will be even better this year, and will be one of NYRB’s most important players. I see Park and Mendes as average at best, if they ever settle into any consistent form at all. Besides, Richards can be so much fun to watch. You take your eye off him for a second and he can be running in on the goal.

  35. furia yanqui says:

    RB fans are saying that Conde is not so good … But what of Richards? Is he so great? Yes, he is fast, a scary dribbler in fact, but he seems to have no shot and no crossing ability. I think we have yet to learn if he truly is the next Beasley or the next Johnny Torres.

    He has been a pro for all of one year. (In contrast, Conde has played in the Copa Libertadores). Let’s see if he doesn’t go thru a sophomore slump.

    Make all you want of Conde being a malcontent, but look at today’s Chicago Tribune — he is already trying to make nice. I suspect JCO tampered, talked Conde into doing all this for his own selfish purposes, all the while promising Conde more money in NY … and now we will see if JCO’s plot will come to fruition.

  36. kpugs says:

    Aristotle, Jeff Parke has been the most consistent player for this team for the past four years my friend. Just because he’s not Oguchi Onyewu doesn’t make him inconsistent. He’s a solid, reliable, above average MLS center back with a knack for clutch tackles–nothing more, but definitely nothing less.

    Mendes I agree is quite inconsistent.

  37. kpugs says:

    Furia, Conde is something like 3 years older than Richards and has played, what, less than 10 games in the league?

    Don’t give me that crap, Richards seems to improve every game and his ceiling is way up there.

    Conde has reached his ceiling. Comparing them is ridiculous, even though Richards currently isn’t “great.”

  38. Ben K says:

    Depending on the particulars, this is a deal I would would have strongly considered. However, it is being reported that Chris Rolfe might be moved to the right midfield spot permanently. Considering the glut of forwards the Fire seem to have suddenly and this revelation (if it is true), then the hole Richards would have filled is no longer the gaping problem it previously was.

    With a drop in talent between the pipes, Chicago’s only real need is to keep together a strong defense. Losing Conde would require acquiring a replacement, and while doable, isn’t necessary while they have him.

    Reports from training seem to indicate that Conde is going to be a professional and fulfill his contract (nobody seems to be sure what exactly the terms are) with the Fire. If so, then the Fire are right to be content with their roster and turn down offers that aren’t exceptional from NYRB.

    Basically this offer shows the Fire to be in the drivers seat and proves it will be their decision when and how to deal Conde.

  39. Queensman says:

    Steve, I’m a neutral fan, and I just don’t see all the hoopla about Conde. Is he a good player? He seemed to be a pretty good player. But were his 7 games indicative of someone who is worth the number 2 guy in rookie of the year, a first round pick, a 2nd player, money …… and in some circles people even asking for an international spot to boot? That’s nuts. Because NY has a need for defenders, I would make the Richards/Conde swap if I were NY. However, in a vacuum, Conde and Richards seem to be two players of equal value (at best for Chicago). Giving the Fire something more for Conde would be a mistake for NY.

  40. Chris says:

    Based on some training camp reports, it doesn’t appear that Conde is all THAT unhappy with the Fire. I’m sure he’d like to join up with JCO but perhaps the Fire believe that he’ll be content enough to stay and contribute.

  41. Connor says:

    Our offense relied on Richards so much last year. His speed enabled others to get open…granted he often did very little once he got past a defender, but we needed him last year. Who would Osorio replace him with even if we did trade him because there is no one on the roster that can do as good a job as Richards did last year.

  42. aristotle says:


    I think you might be wearing those proverbial rose colored glasses. You seem to overrate Park, yet can’t see the value of Conde. I’m not agreeing with a lot of the Chicago fans here who seem to think Conde is some kind of superstar, but I definitely think he is good.

    Maybe I am being too harsh about Park, but whenever I watch NYRB, (and that’s quite a bit) I never seem to find myself thinking he is playing great. The whole NYRB defense just seems blah. Maybe he’s just getting lost in the middle of it.

  43. White Kix says:

    If Conde’s contract is done at the end of the year, then Chicago should go for the trade. Who cares if they look weak for making the deal now. If they don’t trade him, they will lose him at the end of the season and not get anything in return. That is when they will look stupid. three years from now, Conde will be long gone (unless he is playing under JCO in Philly or something) and Richards is running by the Fire on the wing creating the game winning goal against them in the playoffs. I think Dane will be a player like Jeff Cunningham. Around the league for a long time, always one of the top players, but probably won’t get the respect he deserves. Chicago, take Dane, a draft pick and some cash. Then use the cash for a new center back.

  44. xb says:

    Wow. If this is true, I would have taken that offer in a heartbeat. If I were a RBNY fan, I would be sighing in relief that Richards wasn’t taken away.

  45. Nathanhj says:

    It’s a solid deal on the Chicago front. I would strongly consider making it.

    But if Rolfe really is moving to right mid and the strikers perform, then the biggest weakness is in the back and Conde is the linchpin there.

    However, you pick up Parke or Mendes AND Richards and Chicago could seriously go 3-5-2 or 3-4-3 and have both Rolfe and Richards on the field at the same time. That bears some consideration.

    I think if I were Chicago I’d pull the trigger on this deal.

  46. BeautifulGame says:

    furia yanqui:
    I pretty much agree that at this moment, Richards is over rated – he does not cross well at all and he has no left foot (i.e. can’t cut back across the middle effectively).

    However, I do believe that he will improve considerably in those areas this year.
    He ended last year a MUCH better and more dangerous player than when he started – i guess he has a good practive work ethic.

  47. Dannyc58 says:

    Isn’t Conde 25 and Richards 24 about to be 25?

  48. Ben K says:


    In your MyHerald piece about not overpaying for Conde you state that Mendes and Parke could both start for Chicago. I’m sorry, but is not the case. It is possible that Parke could take Conde’s spot if he left, but the defense would be much weaker. Mendes wouldn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of beating out Brown, Segares, and Robinson this season. Maybe if one of them was hurt, but the Fire have a few guys ready to step in if need be.

  49. Drew says:

    Tough call. I do think this is a fair offer, if not in favor of the Fire. The main problem as I see it is the Fire need a strong defensive side as their offense was horrible last year and hasn’t yet proven itself to be much better (I think it has, but we haven’t exactly brought in the 2nd coming of Emilio). Furthermore, we lost our #1 keeper and need to be strong to protect our goal. Our bread and butter was our D last year, so to severely weaken it would be a major hit.

    That said, I’d probably do this deal if I were the Fire GM. I’d do right by my player (hopefully gaining some goodwill with players that may look to come to Chitown in the future), upgrade the r-mid slot, grab some needed depth for the D, add $ to search for a differnt int’l defensive player and grab a 1st rounder to stay strong going forward. I think ultimately I’d take the risk (weakening the d and making NY really good) and would make this trade…..although I can see why the Fire mgmt wouldn’t want to.

  50. J says:

    RBNY…WALK AWAY…lets stick with the guys we have and add an attacking mid…we need some sort of consistency with our players…

  51. JSquaredNY says:

    I can’t believe JCO made this offer. It’s not like Conde is the only talented left-footed defender out there. Dane is going to be huge this season. Plus the team would have lost so much depth. I hated this proposed trade as an RBNY fan. Please tell me that they’re not going to start throwing in more cash and/or players…

  52. kawa says:

    This is nonsense. two years ago without any additions we had one of the best defensive unit in the league. we lost marvell to Torronto but i believe with the change of coaches Mendes and Parke can find form again. this is Mls not the Epl we dont need conde that bad to give up one of our best offensive threats,to the enemy are we crazy . we have a few new unproven players but that does not mean its a good idea to give away one of if not the best right mid in the league for a whiney mercenary . psssh

  53. EDB says:


    If Rofle is playing mid there would be no room for Richards. You would have Mapp, Blanco and Mapp along with pause and bakary as the d-mids. So really if Rolfe is doing the mid fielders role then they would just need a replacement for Conde or a proven keeper.

  54. DURSK says:

    If Richards went to Chicago, he would defiently speed up the right side – and help feed Blanco in the middle. I personally think Conde is not worth the hype.

  55. Mikemike says:

    This deal doesn’t make sense to me.
    Maybe NY wanted Chi to trade Conde and another player for Richards,draft pick and money.
    Otherwise I don’t see why Chicago would decline.
    At very least, they could trade Richards to another team for a defender.

    Basically, NY gives one offer. CHI says no, “we want Richards.” NY says, well if you want Richards you have to throw player X in as well.


  56. Nathanhj says:


    In a 3-5-2, you could put Pause and Soumarey (sp?) in d-mid, Mapp and Richards as wingers, Blanco in the middle and Rolfe and somebody else up front.

    In a 3-4-3, you could put Pause in front of the backline, Mapp and Richards on the wings, Blanco behind the strikers, and Rolfe and two others up-front.

    My point is that Rolfe doesn’t have to play mid. He’s had success as a striker. You bring in Richards and you can keep him up there.

    I like the idea of getting all your talented people on the field, and this allows for that.

    But if Rolfe is just a mid, then you are right, Richards is superfluous. But I think Rolfe is more versitile than that.

  57. Jimmy Bobo says:

    The Red Bulls are stoopid for including Richards in the deal. The Fire are even more stoopid if they turned down Richards, Parke or Mendes, and cash for a disgruntled Conde. It’s funny how anger has tampered with the Fire’s ability to reason.

  58. Steve L. says:

    IVES – “Fire fans, would you take a package of Dane Richards, Jeff Parke or Carlos Mendes, a first-round draft pick and cash for Conde? Red Bulls fans, would you give that up for Conde?”

    #1 – Yes, please.

    #2 – Rolfe on the right is good, but Rolfe or Dane Richards as an option is better. How many games did he miss last summer? Besides, Rolfe is a natural forward, AFAIK.

    #3 – Speaking of depth, Rolfe could be gone over the summer for Olympic qualifying… and don’t even get me started on Mapp’s fitness.

    #4 – Parke and Richards should both have a huge season this year.

  59. Joamiq says:

    Wow… wow. I am in the camp that believes that Richards is a bit overrated – he needs to learn to at least cross or shoot, and there were stretches of the season where he was totally ineffective – but his value is still high as a rare MLS winger with pace who can create dangerous situations on the flank. I am surprised that RB is willing to trade him for a player who doesn’t want to be with his team, and I wouldn’t increase the offer, even though I think Richards for Conde straight up is a good trade for NY.

    I think Osorio should just stand pat now and see how the Conde situation plays out. If it gets close to the season’s start and it looks like he’s going to hold out, the Fire might be more desperate. If his demand to be traded was just an empty threat, then there was never much here to begin with anyway.

    Also, I have always liked Parke myself, but I’m having a really hard time understanding all of you who are writing as if Parke is significantly better than Mendes. If anything, it’s the other way around. What exactly are you people seeing in Mendes that makes him so much worse than Parke? Mendes was the standout Metro defender last year. Ives thought he should have been an all-star.

  60. EDB says:

    I understand and probably agree that Rolfe would be better served at forward. However, almost all the players on trial are forwards so i think Rolfe is pretty much locked into playing a majority of the year at mid. Which would leave Richards as a reserve for most matches. which i would not have a problem with if the fire played in other compitions for depth but I think this year it doesn’t make sense, but it would if they could finish top 4 for next year.

  61. aristotle says:

    Slightly off topic, but since so many NYRB fans are in one place, I would like to ask you how you think your team is going to do this year?

    I’m asking because at the same time that I’m thinking I can’t believe how bad NYRB is looking right now, I saw at least one NYRB fan talking like they might be in MLS Cup, or within a game or two.

    I’m not a Chicago or NYRB fan so I’m not trying to needle anyone, but doesn’t it seem like they have taken a big step backward this year? Most of the other MLS teams seem to be improving while NYRB has just lost players. If I were to do the standings prediction thing, I would put only four teams behind NYRB this season: San Jose, Columbus, Kansas City, and RSL.

    It seems like a waste to have the best scoring tandem in the league with very little to back it up. If Reyna somehow had a great year and Richards continued to improve, (assuming they aren’t dumb enough to trade him) then maybe a little higher, but I’m sticking with 10th out of 14 unless they sign some players. Try and be objective.

  62. Drew says:

    feelin’ the need to let you know how much i enjoy this blog ives. great stuff!

  63. Michael F. says:

    That is a ridiculous offer. No way would give up on Richards for Conde. Especially considering our needs, Richard’s upside, the fact that history suggests Osorio has 2 years at best as coach and Conde would just leave then too. I’m sick of spoiled athletes dictating where they play (Conde, Kidd…) it’s a joke.

  64. MasterShake says:

    Whats with JCO and Colombian pride? There are other players out there..

  65. furia yanqui says:


    Wilman is 25. Dane is 24. To be exact, Wilman is 15 months older than Dane, not “something like three years.” Age is not a factor here.

    so Wilman has only played 10 games for the Fire in MLS … what’s the point of that? His pre-MLS experiences include stuff like this: link to

    I’ve seen all of Conde’s 10 games here … Please name a defender from another MLS team that you’d take over him. Eddie Robinson, who is something like 30 years old? Parkhust? Claudio Suarez, who is old enough to have been an Aztec emperor?

    I also don’t agree with your assessment that Wilman has reached his ceiling while Dane’s potential is limitless … We have discussed Dane’s limits currently, and we will see if he can overcome them. More likely, he will be Jeff Cunningham without the goals (and without the stand-up act).

    Conde will be in Europe in a year or so — if he grows up because this sort of shite definitely won’t fly there.

  66. chilad says:

    the likely reason for Chicago turning this down is cash not players.Ive said quit a few times the first thing that needs to be addressed is the $300,000 transfer fee that was paid for Conde.I dont know how much Chicago paid and how much the league paid, but this could be a serious issue point in any trade.
    also, Millinarios retained some rights to future compensation on future transfers.So this could also be a problem in any cash deal with Conde.Chicago needs a larger amount to recover their expense and give compensation to Millinarios, sure its not a true transfer but could be seen as one if money changes hands for Conde.

  67. Haig says:

    “I would like to ask you how you think your team is going to do this year?”

    3rd or 4th in the east, as usual. With basically the same players, that’s how they did last year, and there’s plenty of money for two or three key signings. I don’t see how Columbus, Chicago, or Toronto have significantly improved, New England is a total mystery, and DC has made wholesale revisions to their lineup without impressing anyone in their friendlies to date.

    I do think the team will be better prepared and harder to beat this year, so a stronger finish is not impossible.

  68. Pablo Chicago says:

    Bone head move by the pink cows. Richards is declared one of the “untouchables” and now he’s trade bait?

    What kind of a message is being sent to Richards?

    Ives said it himself. The pink cows are “desperate” for a decent defender and Conde is “exactly” what Osorio is looking for.

    You guys deserve Osorio. Looking forward to seeing who coaches the pink cows next season after Richards leaves, and after you break the league’s GA record because Osorio did nothing while he waited for Conde to come over.

  69. Joamiq says:

    aristotle: We haven’t lost or gained any key players, so if Jozy stays for the whole year, I think we’ll finish right where we did last year, 3rd in the East. Actually, given that he missed so many games last year, I figure they’ll still be duking it out for 3rd with Chicago even without him. I have no idea how you put Toronto ahead of NY, and it’s way too early to say that Colorado and LA have moved ahead of NY (though I would say there’s a good chance that LA has).

    furiq yanqui: Are you suggesting that there are no prima donnas in Europe? Really?

  70. Tom says:

    Don’t know much about Conde, so hard for me to judge, but as a Red Bulls fan, I would be disappointed to see Richards go. He is one of the very few players outside Angel and Altidore (likely leaving soon) that consistently causes problems for teams. When RBNY moves to the new stadium and long balls sent to Richards on the wing won’t bounce 20 feet in the air off the artificial turf, he could be an even bigger threat at home.

    Aside from the value question, what does it mean if the league tries to make this happen? Will player demands start to be a bigger problem? If I was a Fire fan, I wouldn’t like the idea of the league watching a team steal my coach and a key player.

  71. Steve says:

    A) Toronto stinks!

    B) Conde and Richards are both reasonable value for one another.

    C) Chicago only got Blanco in late July, so assuming he stays healthy they’re probably a little better than NY. Maybe.

    D) Toronto still stinks!

  72. aristotle says:


    I suspected some people would question Toronto being ahead of New York, but Toronto’s record was really not indicative of their play after their initial really bad startup. They really are a tough proposition at home, and I expect will be even more so this year. NYRB on the other hand seems to find no advantage in playing at home. Injuries were a nightmare for Toronto too. They were on a real tear and would not have finished last if not for injuries. I think it’s logical to expect that a full season of Ronnie O’Brien, Todd Dunivant, Tyrone Marshall, Danny Dichio, and Jeff Cunningham will make a HUGE difference. That’s a lot of talent to have lost for major chunks of the season. Then you would certainly expect Edu’s season to be an improvement, and probably Marvel Wynne will continue to improve also.

    Todd Dunivant, Marvel Wynne, Tyrone Marshall, Jim Brennan, Ronnie O’Brien, Carl Robinson, Maurice Edu, Jeff Cunningham, Danny Dichio, etc., are a team I would rather have than NYRB, even as enticing as Josie and Angel are. I also don’t think they are done by a long shot.

    I don’t know about losing “key” players, but given NY’s current roster, I think still having players like Clint Mathis, Santino Quaranta, Markus Schopp, and Joe Vide around would have been a plus. Maybe they weren’t great but what did they get to replace them?

    You don’t think Colorado took a big step forward with Gomez?

    Anyway, that’s just my take on it.

  73. aristotle says:


    I forgot to add Chicago in the last post. I think it was pretty clear that Chicago were a better team than NYRB in the last third of the season when they had finalized their team with Conde. They only finshed behind NYRB because they were so far behind them earlier in the season before Chicago improved greatly and NYRB began a slide. Chicago finished the season a pretty strong team.


    Come on, stinks? There are some pretty good players on that team and part of the reason I think Toronto could finish higher is not even player related. They have the best home field advantage in MLS by far. It’s almost like watching a premier league crowd. That makes a difference.

  74. Lee says:

    The Fire must be crazy to turn this down!!

    Although Richards is replaceable his value to them is alot more than a sulking south American!!

    Why would you want to keep a player who doesn’t want to play for you? he will probably start faking injuries if not traded and his stock will fall to a supplemental pick in 2010!!

    Give the fire..Richrds, draft pick and allocation cash so that we get the final piece in our puzzle..I would happy to see Mendes go too as he was the worst of our central backs last year!!

    Go Bulls!!

  75. Frimp says:

    As a RBNY fan I don’t think it’s quite worth it – I’m assuming here that Dane has refined his crossing skills in the offseason. If that offer were to go through, I would have significant expectations of Conde to fill the hole it took to get him. Then what do we do about filling Dane’s shoes, which cannot be filled from a speed perspective…

  76. Joamiq says:


    I had assumed you had just accidentally omitted Toronto. It’s your opinion, I suppose, but with a minus 24 goal difference I think they were actually lucky to get as many points as they did. NY had a number of key injuries as well. Don’t forget, we haven’t actually seen a full season of Jozy yet. The problem is that Toronto has very little depth. Guys like Ty Marshall, Jim Brennan, and Carl Robinson hardly give Toronto an edge over NY. I don’t have any doubt that NY will finish well ahead of Toronto UNLESS Mo pulls off some signings of their trialists, some of whom could change the equation.

    You are correct that I forgot Mathis. But Quaranta? Schopp? Are you kidding? They played a combined what, 80 minutes last season? If we hadn’t just gotten rid of them, we would have to have paid other teams to take them off our hands.

    I think Colorado took a big step forward with Gomez. But one superstar does not a team make. That team is still in trouble.

    Chicago did look much better towards the end of the season. I expect a tough fight between Chicago and NY for 3rd in the conference. I wouldn’t be surprised if Chicago won out.

    We haven’t added much, just Etcheverry. Osorio has claimed all along that he’s looking at more players that he will bring in closer to the season’s start or in midseason. He did obviously acquire players midseason for the Fire. We shall see what happens.

  77. Matt says:

    Conde did not play in today’s game against Toronto – even though nearly every single Fire defender is injured.

    Take this for what it’s worth.

  78. Tim F. says:

    The Fire are crazy for turning down this offer. As a Red Bulls fan, I hope has a right mid replacement for Richards because he was one of the bright midfield spots for New York last year and there were not that many.

    I hope Richards lights up the league this year for the Red Bulls!

  79. DURSK says:

    NYRB better start looking soon because come summer, Jozy will be gone and out to better places.

  80. Chicho says:

    I think it’s pretty clear Chicago has been a better team than NJ every year they’ve existed. I think the Richards plus Parke/Carlos and some draft pics is a pretty fair trade. I guess the right winger we have on trial must be impressing or I suspect deal would have been done this morning.

  81. guillermo says:

    From a Fire fan’s perspective, I would make this deal depending on the amount of cash that was offered. If it’s anywhere near the $300K transfer fee that was paid for Conde it should be a done deal.

    If they don’t make the deal, I can live with that too if Conde decides he wants to be a grown up and honor his deal.

    Maybe JCO will be dopey enough to sweeten the deal.

    Dema, Mendes, and cash…. my eye.

  82. Ted says:

    Mapp, Blanco, Richards playing off of the striker of your choice with two d-mids behind… yeah I like that.

  83. Mike says:

    Conde appeared in a handful of games last year and demonstrated that he was already one of the best defenders in the league. The man has high value. Some even say he’ll be shipped off to Europe by the time the ’09 season rolls around. Here in Chicagoland it’s fair to say we want a portion of his transfer fee. Who wouldn’t? Just how much cash was offered in this deal? We forked over 300k to get him in Chicago. Before he departs we need to make that back.

  84. Eugene says:

    As a Red Bulls fan I’m actually pretty angry right now. Osorio is speaking out of both sides of his mouth. We NEED Richards. We have yet to pick up an attacking midfielder or a left wing, so if we give up our right wing, who is going to get the ball to the forwards?

    So far Osorio hasn’t added much this off-season and the team is looking much the same as last year while almost all of our conference rivals have gotten stronger. At this rate, I don’t see NY doing any better than last year and I’m not sure that Osorio is going to make it to the end of the season.

    This deal is shocking and Chicago is doing NY a favor by turning it down. I see a lot of Fire fans on this board pretty satisfied with NY’s offer while NY fans here are either upset, disappointed or relieved that Chicago turned it down.

    Someone in NY’s front office should start paying attention or their going to see the fans heading for the door!

    The team needs stability. Just as Richards was getting established and the attack was getting set, Osorio makes a move to shake it up. Not smart. In addition, Richards is a fan favorite. Dealing those kinds of guys doesn’t help to build fan attachment to the team. Arena made that mistake dealing Wynne last year, who was also a fan fave.

    I’m not happy with Osorio right now. Maybe he needs to call another meeting at Stout to explain what he’s doing (or not doing…).

  85. Garret says:

    I agree with you Eugene. Richards needs to stay where he is. I’m tired of the Metro/Red Bull turnover every off season. If the guy sucks fine, but we have given away too much proven talent in the past.

  86. Smith says:

    Glad RBNY’s offer wasn’t taken. That’s too much for a slightly better than average player who has played 7 games in MLS. Conde is the player he is going to be. Richards has a huge upside. Glad they shot this down. JCO was crazy for even considering it. Without Richards, our Midfield consists of the ever so boring Reyna, DVDB, Dema, Stammler foursome.ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ.

  87. aristotle says:


    I’m not sure I see your point. Toronto was without their best defenders also, and yet Chicago, supposedly a much better team, couldn’t beat them. This is silly, though. It’s pre-season.


    Your being a little unfair. I was just mentioning players that left NYRB and had not been replaced, who at least had the potential to do something if they were still there. Something is better than nothing, and actually, Clint Mathis made a major contribution to NYRB last year.

    Jim Brennan had a good year.

    I would take Tyrone Marshall over any defender NYRB has, and I would certainly take a defense that includes Marshall, Dunivant, and Wynn over what NYRB has.

    Certainly Toronto hasn’t earned the right to be considered better than NYRB, but I think they will be close too a .500 team this year. Without any changes, I don’t see NYRB doing much better than that. They were only one game above .500 last year. Also, I’m not sure what effect losing Johnston as manager will have on Toronto, so that could be a factor in me being wrong.

    It’s a bold prediction but we’ll just have to wait and see. I hope NYRB does well, the league needs it.

  88. papa bear says:

    like it or not RBNY fans, Richards in a deal for Conde is fair value. If Conde would have been here longer, he would have been an even more serious contender for ‘Newcomer of the year’ He is polished and ready. Richards is still ‘potential’
    If Chicago turned a deal for Richards + cash + 1 of the stiffs RBNY passes off as defenders; I have to believe it’s not looking good for RBNY.
    However, Luis Arroyave reported today that Conde was held out of practice which is usually code for “we are banging out a deal and don’t want to damage the goods”
    Maybe a 3 way deal is underway so Chicago doesn’t have to directly give anything to RBNY?

  89. Smith says:

    As much as it pains me to agree with papa bear (and it does), a 3 way deal would make sense. Relations between these two teams may have gotten to the point where they can no longer deal directly with each other. That said, I still would rather keep Richards. My gut says that we’re going to get Kyle Martino & lose Richards in this deal.

    Papa Bear – Here’s a potential olive branch. Are you a White Sox fan?

  90. Eugene says:

    I don’t understand why NY would let go of Dane Richards, a young, fast right wing who did very well in his first year to pick up Kyle Martino, an older slower “right” wing who has gotten “as good” as he’ll ever get. Why? Even if Conde’s part of the package, I’m not at all excited for this kind of deal.

  91. chicagosoccerguy says:

    Several Issues:
    Conde is only 25- bright future ahead of him
    Why would Chicago give him up? Who cares if he doesn’t want to be there- a job and a contract is just that- a job and a contract!
    Richards is good- but obviously Chicago thinks Conde’s better- fwiw- so do I.
    NYRB- Tampering mean anything to you???? I am sure Conde wouldn’t release a statement like that without some sort of tampering having taken place.
    If Conde decides to act like a baby when the season starts he is only hurting himself and his future as European teams will have nothing to watch or gauge him with.
    Fire hold the ticket- NOT NYRB- we have what they want, and unlike the BS that took place with the coach- they can’t manipulate this situation.

    So, if Conde wants an immediate future in soccer- he better lace up his boots-throw on his Fire jersey and apologize- or I see him pulling splinters out of his behind.

  92. aristotle says:

    How about if we put aside who’s crazy to accept what in a trade and whether Conde is better than Richards, and look at it in a different way.

    It seems like Conde and Richards belong right where they are for their respective teams. NYRB needs Richards more than they need Conde. NYRB is already going to have a problem getting service for their fab duo, trading Richards will really hurt them. I think the comments on Richards’ inability to cross the ball are exaggerated, especially when you consider it was his first year. Marvel Wynn couldn’t cross the ball to save his life, but he seems to be improving all the time.

    Conde fit in well with Chicago and really helped them. Chicago’s team, even with Blanco, is stil more about defense. While Richards might help them offensively, the loss in defense and overall effect on the team wouldn’t be worth it.

    Let sleeping dogs lie.

  93. jokerman326 says:

    Conde for Guzan, 1 of the Sueno kids (preferably a Mexican-American), a draft pick, and cash (and one of the Sueno guys, a Mexican-American, if possible).. Fake-goats keep Conde. NYRB? Talk to The Fakes about giving up one of the best Latino defenders (if not players in general) in the league.

  94. inkedAG says:

    Hey Sal,

    I didn’t know that if Conde is out of contract, the Fire would still have his rights. Crazy workings of MLS?

  95. Martell says:

    What is it with New York giving up young talented players? Gone are Tim Ward, Eddie Gaven, Ricardo Clark, Todd Dunivant etc. and for what?