Off-Season Thoughts: The Goalkeeper Conundrum Part II

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So if Pickens is on his way out, who do you grab as your #2 keeper in Colorado?

Last week I began to think about what Colorado Rapids need to do in the goalkeeper department. With Matt Pickens likely on his way out and Steward Ceus not showing that he is a capable starter (at this point), it brings the sticky subject as to who will back-up starter Clint Irwin. If you assume that Pickens is gone and Ceus is the number 3, who do you bring in as a number 2?

A couple of scenarios could come into play this off-season:

  1. The Rapids could look at drafting a goalkeeper in the Superdraft. That may be easiest to do, but using a draft pick on such a position belies some of the other needs that the Rapids have (specifically right back and help up front).
  2. The Rapids could go overseas and try and grab a keeper from Europe or go down south and use the connections in South America that they have built.
  3. The Rapids could trade or sign an established keeper in MLS.

When I look at those three options, quite honestly, #3 makes the most sense to me. I think there are larger issues that can be addressed in the draft (instead of drafting a goalkeeper) and that thinking is similar when I look at bringing in someone new into the league. I believe that there is enough talent in MLS to pull a #2 from another club.

So who then? Do you go after a younger guy? Or a more seasoned veteran towards the end of his career? For me the choice is easy-go and grab a older guy who is experienced and is willing to be the #2 behind Irwin. This can benefit in two ways:

  1. Irwin could be in line to start at least 35 games (34 MLS regular season and 1 US Open Cup) in 2014. That is a lot of games and having someone being able to jump in and make the quality starts when necessary is what you want from a #2. And an experienced keeper is going to give you that. And an experienced keeper is not necessarily going to want to unseat Irwin.
  2. An experienced keeper can act as a mentor to both Irwin and Ceus and aid in their growth.

When I look around the league a couple of players come to mind, but the one I think about (and I do not know if he wants to leave his current situation) is Marcus Hahnemann. He is a Rapids legend and led the team to its first ever MLS Cup Championship game. Now, does he want to leave Seattle? Unknown. You could probably make a relatively cost effective trade with his current club to get him in Burgundy to finish out his career.

Will it happen? No clue, but it is sure fun to speculate.

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