When Marc Burch spoke with his agent about potential landing spots in Thursday’s Re-Entry Draft, Colorado was at the top of the 29-year-old defender’s list.
Three tough matchups with the Rapids last season gave the then-Sounder a long look at the young Western Conference foes, and sure enough, Burch was selected by Colorado with the 11th pick in the first stage of MLS’ Re-Entry Draft on Thursday. Burch will be counted on to provide depth along the backline and maybe shifting into the midfield as well, but wherever it may be, he said he’s happy with his new home.
“I’m open to anything, really,” Burch told MLSsoccer.com by phone on Thursday. “I think left back and left midfield are my top two [positions], but I’ve played some center back and I’m not afraid to adjust and go to the other side of the field. It doesn’t really matter to me.”
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The Rapids want certain types of fullbacks, ones that are able to push forward and help supplement the attack. Burch’s four assists in only 13 starts last year show that he has the offensive ability that head coach Oscar Pareja craves out of his fullbacks, perhaps making Burch – a self-admitted attack-happy defender – an ideal fit at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
“I’ve never really thought of myself as a stay-at-home defender,” the University of Maryland product said. “I enjoy getting in the attack, I enjoy spreading the ball, I love whipping in crosses. I think that’s a commodity that people have tried to use when I’ve been on different teams.”
Although left-footed and preferring the left side, the Cincinnati native said he is open to playing right back and anywhere he is asked to do so. Another one of Pareja’s preferences are players who can play multiple positions, and Burch's versatility is something that will likely help him earn playing time with Colorado in 2014.
“I’m going to go there with an open mind, I’m open to any decision the coach makes,” said Burch, who will be joining his fifth team over an eight-year MLS career. “Wherever he’d like me to play, I’m going to be happy to do it.”
Chris Bianchi covers the Colorado Rapids for MLSsoccer.com.