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Untwisting an odd one: Chicago Fire and Columbus Crew swap frowning faces

Feb 4, 2013, 5:36 PM EDT

Columbus Crew v D.C. United Getty Images

There’s a high “dark cloud” factor covering the multi-layered swap between Chicago and Columbus.

One party was unhappy in Columbus, all hacked off about things in Ohio and thus presumably thrilled to be in Chicago.

One guy sounds none too happy to see that his rights were traded to Chicago. So he’s all hacked off, and it sounds like he has no plans of going to Chicago – never mind that he’s out of contract with nowhere to play at the moment.

Oh, then there Dominic Oduro. He’s happy! Or seems to be if you watch his smiley Tweets.

Yes, this one will take a while to properly dissect.

  • The long and short is that Chicago gets midfielder Dilly Duka and the MLS rights of first Robbie Rogers from Columbus, in exchange for striker Oduro.
  • Duka, a talented U.S. under-23, is headed to Chicago. He seemed to be moving up the ranks at steady pace around Crew Stadium; Duka got 14 league starts and six appearances off the bench in 2012, not awful for a third-year man at age 23. But he got sideways with management and never seemed to be in Robert Warzycha’s plans for 2013.
  • Rogers failed to catch on at Leeds, and that was after hitting a plateau in Columbus previously. So he’s out there, waiting to be signed. That cranked up the speculation wheel, fueling talk that the speedy left winger was en route back to MLS, where Columbus still had his rights. Now, his rights belong to Chicago … but that appears unlikely to happen based on Rogers’ toxic Tweet.
  • That’s not a total black eye on the Fire. Not yet, anyway. If Chicago can turn Rogers’ rights into something (a draft pick, a smidgeon of allocation money, perhaps) then they come out looking good here. Either way, Duka for Oduro isn’t a bad deal.
  • Oduro is something of a one-trick pony, all speed but precious little imagination. He has averaged a shade under five goals in seven MLS seasons, now on his fifth MLS stop. He’s a good second-half pace-changer, but probably not much more. But, hey … at least he’s happy!
  1. wfjackson3 - Feb 4, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    What is Rogers’ deal? At this point, he should be flattered that anyone in MLS puts actual value on his rights.

  2. mvktr2 - Feb 5, 2013 at 2:25 AM

    Rogers’ exact tweet from the linked article, ‘Just read my “rights” were traded to Chicago… Love how the MLS works, pretty funny.’

    Not very ‘toxic’ at all in my opinion. Also fairly accurate as most leagues see a player returning after a stint elsewhere as a free agent/unlinked player.

    • east96st - Feb 5, 2013 at 8:26 AM

      You’re right. When seen by itself, it seems pretty mild. I’m guessing Steve Davis is taking into account the years Robbie spent b*tching and moaning about how he was going to Europe, where his “talents” would be appreciated, while he was in Columbus. Robbie never had a bad game. He just wasn’t used correctly by the coaching staff. I’m sure his failure to catch on in Europe had everything to do with the coaching staffs and nothing to do with Robbie’s abilities. It’s hard not to immediately think “same old Robbie” as soon as you see this. Bottom line, you’re right. Robbie should get a chance to show he learned something about team and himself while in Europe. He may be a changed man. I wouldn’t bet on it, but it could have happened.

      • wfjackson3 - Feb 5, 2013 at 11:16 AM

        When I saw the tweet in my feed it had a hashtag at the end saying something about how being in the MLS leaves the players without rights. Not sure if he deleted it and removed the hashtag.

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