D.C. United’s Rochat transfers to BSC Young Boys

Alain Rochat

Photo by ISIPhotos.com


Since making his wishes clear to leave the club, D.C. United has made the departure of defender Alain Rochat official.

The 30-year-old defender, acquired from the Vancouver Whitecaps on June 6, has transferred to BSC Young Boys in Switzerland. Per team and league policy, terms and conditions of the deal were not disclosed.

Rochat’s time in America’s capital was not a happy one. Following his trade from the Whitecaps, the Canadian-born Swiss-raised player ripped the Major League Soccer trading scheme as “not human.” While at D.C. United, Rochat made five appearances, four of them starts, mostly at left back.

“We would like to thank Alain for his time with the club,” D.C. United GM Dave Kasper said in a press release on the team website. “He is a quality player and person. While this move provides substantial resources to assist in continued development of our roster, it also allowed us to honor the players wish to return home to play professionally.”

With the move back to Switzerland, Rochat rejoins his former team, playing with Young Boys between 2002 and 2005. The former Switzerland international first joined MLS in 2011, signing on with the Whitecaps in their first season in the league and making 67 appearances with the club.

What do you think of this news?

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47 Responses to D.C. United’s Rochat transfers to BSC Young Boys

  1. slowleftarm says:

    I think MLS is better off without a guy who acts like being transferred is equivalent to some human rights abuse. Au Revoir Rochat!

    • Nate Dollars says:

      ^^^^ red bull fan

    • Eurosnob says:

      You sound like a clueless 12 year old. There are better things in life than troll on the board that discusses the affairs of the club that you do not support. Maybe when you grow up, get married, get a real job, and get sent by your employer to another country to work for another employer one week before your pregnant wife is due, you will understand Rochat’s situation.

    • jake says:

      Clearly you didn’t read in the other thread where his wife posted in reply to your rude post. Your hyperbole is disrespectful. I hope you’d never say the same thing to his face or to hers.

    • Northzax says:

      I dunno, I’d be pretty pissed if on a day’s notice I had to leave my nine-month pregnant wife and three kids to move to another country on the other side of a continent, wouldn’t you?

    • Coco says:

      seriously dude. Go back to watching baseball or something. This whole trading without the consent of the player doesn’t happen anywhere else in the sport of soccer around the globe. Do you understand that soccer is a global game and has an industry standard or not?

      Or is it all just ‘MERICA to you?

    • slowleftarm says:

      I am a RBNY fan but that’s not relevant. If anything, DCU got the short end of the stick here so I should be happy about that.

      The thing is, when you agree to go play somewhere, you agree toabide by the rules of that league/country. His comments were way over the top. And I seriously doubt that was his wife. If it was, my comments wouldn’t be any different. Stop whining, get on with, and realize that fans are entitled to their opinions.

      • Northzax says:

        Seems like a pretty good deal to me, actually. Dc traded a second round pick in 2015 for $500,000 today. Even if it’s the first pick in the second round, this year that would be Ryan Hollingsworth, would you sell him for a half million? I would. It’s not like Rochat was going to put the team over the top this year, right? Plus, dcu hurts another team twice, once by taking the player, and another by helping to have a reputation as a club that accommodates players’ desires, while Vancouver is the team that will ship you off 4,000 miles against your will. Who are you more likely to sign with?

      • Soro says:

        Look up Emilie Rochat on twitter – it was her, right down to the same broken syntax in her writing in English.

      • Nate Dollars says:

        nope, that was a nice bit of business for dc united. knowing the front office, i seriously doubt that’s what they had in mind, but it’s nice it worked out that way.

  2. dan says:

    I agree with Rochat, you shouldn’t be able to just trade a player away without his consent.

    Could you imagine if your job told you that you are being moved to a different company in a different city and you have absolutely no say in it?

    • martin says:

      For a six figure salary I would.

      • James Bilgihan says:

        If you had to move away from a near-term wife, 3 children, and everything you’ve setup I think you would reconsider that statement. Six Figures is good compensation but it is equivalent to many other players on his old club and most other clubs (aka – not much more money).

    • JoeW says:

      Actually, that happens all the time. And then the employee has the choice of accepting the move or quitting and finding another place of employment. It’s not unique to American sports. It’s quite common with American business and also government and absolutely the US military.

      As for Rochat, I can understand his reaction. “Trades” are pretty foreign in Europe and South America (they happen but they’re rare). Usually a player is sold…and they have some say in that and they get a share of the transfer fee. So if you’re not used to the trade concept, it’s a tough adjustment. Add in that a french-speaking player signed with a club in Canada, his wife was pregnant and he’s got kids, and he can’t very well uproot them to come to DC (and despite sharing a border, it’s a foreign country…different healthcare, taxes, driver’s license issues). Vancouver owed him a bit more respect on this issue–a guy who has been with them since their initial season and with his wife nearly 9 months pregnant–rather than just calling him in after practice and saying “pack your bags–you’ve been traded.”

      • Coco says:

        yeah…it’s wrong. This whole “pack your bags–you’ve been traded” is not a standard practice in the sport of soccer globally. Just because baseball does it doesn’t make it acceptable in soccer. Players will just avoid MLS if they know at any time the club can just ship them off to another team.

      • Eurosnob says:

        The critical difference between how trades are done in the MLS and the rest of the world is that in other leagues/countries a player cannot be traded without player’s consent. For example, Manchini had issues with Tevez, but he could not unilaterally trade him to let’s say Anzhi Makhachkala.

  3. Emilie says:

    Waouh Slowleftarm, again!
    Can’t you be just happy when people are happy about what is going on on their personal life.
    I tell you adieu and not au revoir

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      I’m upset because the personal narrative of unwanted trade and pregnant spouse throws off the easy ability to churn out the sort of, “DC United facilitates Rochat’s interest in Young Boys,” Beavis and Butthead headline this superficially deserves.

    • Kosh says:


      Please ignore this person. slowleftarm does not speak for DC United fans. He is not even a fan of our wonderful club. Dignity, decency and respect – though a rare species on the internet – still are, and will always be, very important for many people (as is the case for the majority of the people on this site – DC fans or not).

      Good luck to you, Alain and your family. I have a deep respect for him and the class he portrayed through this ordeal – a business transaction that was not in his best interest – and for putting his family first. best of luck to you guys in your new life and when you think of us please remember many fans who loved, repected and appreciated you during your stay in MLS.

    • slowleftarm says:

      Emile, didn’t you just give birth or something? One would think you had something better to do.

      • Nate Dollars says:

        your ignorance is astounding. i’m @ssuming you’re just troIIing at this point?

  4. JoeW says:

    Basically DCU got $600k for a second round draft pick. That’s a good deal.

  5. Coco says:

    MLS does everything wrong. Everything.

    Soccer is not the NFL!!

    • froboy says:

      They’ve done well enough to survive this long. Anyone joining MLS has to understand and accept the rules. If you don’t accept don’t join. The MLS doesn’t set out to be Europe, but to be it’s own league. It is growing slowly, but successfully.

      • Eurosnob says:

        The league is not doing things right if its fans are happy that it has “done well enough to survive this long.” Mexico is a less affluent country, but its league has no salary cap, has promotion and relegation, the teams have much higher budgets and don’t trade players to another country without their consent. MLS’s business model is flawed and until they change it the league’s success will be measured in terms of whether the league was able to “survive” for another year.

        • Kosh says:

          Oh, you again with the promotion and the relegation and the burning money like there is no tomorrow. Why? Because the Europeans do it, duh.

          You’ve played this card before with Euro leagues and I must say nice touch on the Mexico angle this time. But you are still off. Mexico the country may be “less affluent” (whatever the heck that means) but soccer/football has been played there for a very LONG time. Plus the game has no real direct competition in Mexico. So they can do the promotion and the relegation and the no cap thing.

          You minimize MLS’ gains by making it seem like it’s on a yearly death watch because it does not do things the way you’d like it to. You do this knowing all to well that you are off the mark and the league is doing just fine and is meeting (and in many cases exceeding) in it’s development plan. In some ways your effort is…admirable – as you are advocating for how you want MLS to be (assuning you even follow or care for the league). But in other ways it disingenuous because you know all to well that MLS is not situated like other leagues.

          I’m not sure if you know MLS at all or even like it. But it’s been a round long enough for you to know why the promotion and the relegation and the free spending are not within it’s plans anytime soon (if ever). Those wonderful things you like so much are only working for a handful of leagues in the world. Oh yeah they may have all that stuff but you have to look at the overall health of a league to understand if that model is really working or not. Many Europeans would not fess up to it but they do see some value in some form of salary cap.

          Nice chat though. I am looking forward to your next try when you tell us how the Chinese League has passed MLS by because they have all these wondeful things and can afford Drogba and…oh, wait…well maybe not China. But I’m sure you’ll come up with something.

          • Coco says:

            lets just stick to the issue of MLS trying to operate like the MLB where players can be traded without their consent.

            The industry standard in soccer is that players have to agree to a move. If MLS wan’t to be a rogue league on this matter than they will face the consequences (and have).

            Just because another American sports league does something it doesn’t make it wise. MLS is not competing with the MLB. MLS competes with other leagues around the globe for players.

            • Kosh says:

              OK we can just talk about the things you want to.

              Consequences? Players come and go for all kinds of reasons. But yeah, you are right – MLS will suffer drastically because we trade players. Let’s shut this puppy down already and cut our losses.

              The league is not perfect and has come a long way – I take it you never heard of shootouts and countdown clocks. This is how MLS does business and if the league sees it as a detriment (like the shootout) then I am sure the;ll fix it.

              • Coco says:

                players will not come to MLS and players already don’t come to MLS because of this. One recent name that comes to mind is Mix Diskerud. He wanted to play for Portland but MLS wouldn’t allow him to negotiate a no-trade clause with the club.

                Sorry but you just sound like an MLS apologist and you don’t seem willing at all to concede that this is just a bad way to run a league.


          • Eurosnob says:

            Kosh, you drink too much of the cool-aid that MLS tries to feed to its fan base. Promotion/Relegation system and no salary cap are the features of virtually every league in the world, and not just in a handful of affluent leagues as you appear to suggest. I agree that Mexico has more of a soccer culture historically than the US, but MLS’ excuse for using the salary cap/no promotion and relegation is financial, not cultural. However, I can point to a number of leagues in the countries that are less affluent than the US, which have both promotion and relegation and no salary cap. Mexico is just one of examples. I think that promotion and relegation is important, not just because virtually every league in the world with the exception of MLS is doing things this way, but because promotion/relegation rewards merit and promotes the game in smaller markets outside of major metropolitan areas. A club like Swansea can work hard, make smart financial and personnel decisions, and get promoted from 3rd division to EPL. They play in the MLS size stadium and will never have the financial clout of the likes of ManUtd, ManCity, Chelsea or even Arsenal, but the lack of salary cap did not prevent them from making it to the top league and competing against and beating these big name/budget teams. Merit was rewarded. In contrast, MLS operates like an exclusive country club with entitlement culture, where a club like Swansea would never be admitted but a club with incompetent management and policies will remain indefinitely. That’s why last year an amature team that Wynalda put together several weeks before the US open cup knocked out from the US open cup and an MLS team, which fielded its A-team against them. This is not a good situation for the league. Salary cap lowers the overall level of talent in the league, which is again not a good thing. Of course, the very best American players will likely move to the top leagues in Europe, but would it be such a bad thing if MLS could compete financially with Scandinavian leagues for the guys like Gatt or Mix or with Mexican league for Corona, Beasley, Gomez, etc? Beasley said that he is making 3-4 times more in Mexico than what MLS teams are able to pay him. I am not suggesting that MLS on its death bed, I merely quoted the words of another poster who suggested that MLS is doing great simply because it managed to survive. My point is that “survival” is not a good standard to apply to a successful league. I want MLS to succeed in a true sense of the word and become an excellent league, but I feel that its business model hampers it.

            • Kosh says:

              I hear what you are saying, Eurosnob, I truly do. But even in this latest version of your argument you simply do not provide enough evidence to support the fact promotion/relegation and no cap will work in the American sports culture and will help MLS (as it is now) more than harm it.

              We do not have the tribal culture here as is found in Europe and other parts of the world. A big 4 or 5 team league cannot sustain itself in American sports culture. yes we have our dynastites but they too have a shelf life. American fans paying equal money will not stand/support a losing team with no prospects to even challenge for a title before the season starts. Oh and if you think that is bad, tell me how those same fans will entertain the thought of supporting a team that was major league last year and now something else this year. This concept is foreign to our culture and how we consume our sports. We like winners. We love an under dog, yes, but we simply do not like losers (and under dog does not mean loser).

              We have a playoff system. Different, yes. But coupled with parity anyone can be a winner, anyone can be champion – and so the dream of your club being league champs is there for everyone, which brings the fans, which makes a league. Perhaps someday in galaxy far, far away but promotion/relegation is simply not the reality here in the US right now. There is no viable business model or evidence that it can sustain a young and developing MLS.

              Your Open Cup example is a weak one as I have witnessed the Shimpers knocking out the my mighty Manchester United in cup play. Cups are knockout tourneys – that’s the allure of them, anyone can win on the day. So Wynalda’s team did that for a bit and then…well, yeah. That has jack squat to do with promotion/relegation. Plus all the promotion relegation in the world ain’t gonna see the Shrimpers EVER win the Prem. So I have no idea where you are going with that argument because a lower level team beating a top side in a cup match hasn’t crippled any top league yet. Last I checked only once, since the creation of MLS, has a non MLS team won the Open Cup and the way things are going that probably won’t happen anytime soon.

              The open bank account thing that you advocate is killing the game right now. Debt is eroding leagues all over the place. If there is one thing that will happen it is most likely this – you will see some form or salary cap happen in other leagues before promotion/relegation happens in MLS.

              Maybe I am dunk on the MLS Kool-Aide but I’d rather be than whatever it is that you’re drinking. Because the Euro model that you so strongly advocate and claim will make MLS better (whatever better means) simply does not work right now. Time and again you bring it up as the major flaw of MLS but always fail to demonstrate how exactly it would work here and how the MLS survives its implementation.

              Oh…”exclusive country club with entitlement culture”? I think you are confusing MLS with the top 4 (sometimes 5) of the Prem, the ONLY 2 in La Liga, and Celtic. Yeah Swansea may be in the Perm now…but so was Blackburn (and they won the damned thing once).

              • Coco says:

                it’s worked everywhere else on the soccer planet hasn’t it? That’s enough proof for me really.

    • slowleftarm says:

      So 18 years ago, there was no professional league in this country and now MLS is about to add its 20th team and has a higher per game attendance than the NBA and NHL, yet you want to immediately scrap the system that made that possible?

    • Kosh says:

      Yeah, we’re not like Europe or SA so we MUST be doing everthing wrong. Trades happen and just because we do them here differently does not make it wrong – perhaps it’s just diffferent. We have a salary cap – a mechanism in place to grow a league that has to compete with juggernaughts – different. We don’t have promotion/relegation because the league is too young to succeeed with it – different.

      Different is not worng – it’s just different.

      • Jacknut says:

        Wow, this thread is partying like it’s 1999.

      • Coco says:

        the salary cap actually harms the league. And harms our national team. MLS actually harms our national team because it is so over-regulated.

        The demand for soccer is high enough now that a normal league could survive. Guys like you are just brainwashed into thinking leagues can only survive with strict salary caps. Look around the world. There are something like 50 soccer leagues (maybe more) and none of them have salary caps. Guess what? None of them have collapsed because of it.

        And before you say “look at Rangers, look at Portsmouth etc”, those are clubs that misbehave and get punished. They didn’t bring their leagues down.

        • Kosh says:

          MLS harms our National team? WOW!! Look the league ain’t perfect and I never said it was but look at some of the MLS alum playing in Europe now and you tell me what path the American player would have if not for MLS. You think Brandenton is what did this? Look at the history of the Nats program and juxtapose it with MLS’ existence.

          Give me a break.

          This 50 leagues without salary caps don’t have to compete with the NFL, NBA and NHL. Those countries all they have is soccer. This is such a shortsighted statement. Do you think our calendar is really about winters more so than not trying to take on the NFL? MLS has to compete with other sports in the US AND those 50+ countries you are talking about.

          Just because leagues are not collapsing right now left and right does not mean that world soccer is not in crisis and facing a huge debt issue. For Pete’s sake are you actually saying that the mounting debt in world soccer (for which Rangers and Pompey were the proverbial canary in the mine) can really sustain itself? How can anyone NOT see the harm that astronomical wages is causing the game? Rangers, Pompey and a whole bunch of other clubs you’ve never heard of serve as a red flag that mounting debt is a huge problem and dismissing it as poor behavior on their part alone is just plain shortsighted…actually more like recklessly shortsighted.

          This kind of spend it all now attitude happened in a soccer league in this very country not so long ago to not wise up and be more responsible now would be foolish.

          • Coco says:

            i’ve never heard a good argument for a salary cap but feel free to try to make one.

            And I don’t know what the heck your talking about with MLS competing with MLB and the NBA being the reason MLS needs a salary cap.

  6. Norman says:

    When will MLS join the rest of the world and respect player’s rights.

    • Coco says:

      when fans start to wise up and get on the players side.

    • Northzax says:

      Which rights are you talking about? Pretty sure every player signed a contract, players get what they negotiate (just like all the rest of us do) I feel bad for Rochat, but he signed a deal with MLS, when he theoretically could have played in any country in the world (including say, Switzerland) no one forced him to sign with mls.

      • Coco says:

        don’t play dumb Northzax.

        players rights:

        -right to free agency
        -right not to have an MLS team stick a discovery claim on you without your consent (and thus preventing you from signing with any other club)
        – right to be free from an MLS team holding your rights even after you’re out of contract.
        – right to decline to be traded to another city.

        Just to name a few.

        • jay nt says:


        • Kosh says:

          …but the players have a right to not sign with MLS or leave if they don’t like it. Last I checked Alain was allowed to leave. Just thought I’d mention it because you so conveniently left it off you bullet list there.

          The league ain’t perfect but it’s also not the monster most make it out to be either.

          • Coco says:

            you sound like some right-winger who when they hear that people are working in horrible conditions says “well they should find a better job”

            The reality is MLS is our league and it is where most Americans will play. For the simple reason that getting work permits in other countries to play isn’t always possible. So MLS is our league and we shouldn’t put up with players not getting their market value and not having rights that other soccer players have around the globe.

            Your attitude towards this is really appalling .