For a good part of the past two season, the Colorado Rapids have had a steady stream of players come on trial. But the number of trialists seems to have increased over the past month, in large part because the international transfer window is now open in Major League Soccer.
"We have a chance to see some players who are on the market, free ones and other ones that want to come in and give us a free look," Pareja explained following Monday's training session at Dick's Sporting Goods Park. "We also have college players who are in the offseason and are training with us so we can look at them for future drafts. That's basically what it is, but it keeps up the competition as well."
On Monday, the Rapids welcomed right back trialist Jaime Vides (pictured in front of Pareja), a former Guatemalan National Team defender who most recently was at CSD Municipal and also had a trial with DC United last week, according to the Washington Post.
Vides joined Colombians Manuel Izasa and Yoximar Granado Mosquera, who arrived last week, and Conor Doyle, the American forward from Derby County who has now been with the Rapids over a month, as non-roster players at training. Last week the Rapids also saw UNC-Charlotte junior forward Guiseppe Gentile for a few sessions. Other recent trialists, Colombian midfielder Andres Arciles and German defender Kevin Paannewitz are no longer in town.
Monday's training also saw 28 of the Rapids 29 roster players participating, with only rookie Kory Kindle sitting out with an ankle sprain.
"It's harder, yes, but it's healthy for the group," Pareja said of having trailist training with a larger group of roster players. "It's healthy because the human being needs that, needs to know that, 'I need to perform better tomorrow - and even better after tomorrow - because if not, somebody wants my job.' And that makes the team, in the end, the one that benefits. The philisophy here is that our club beyond every individual."