D.C. United has made a major trade that has shocked many in the soccer world. The Black and Red have acquired superstar midfielder/forward Dwayne De Rosario from the New York Red Bulls in exchange for Dax McCarty, a blockbuster trade that nobody saw coming.
"Today, we signed one of the best players MLS has ever seen in Dwayne De Rosario," D.C. United head coach Ben Olsen said in a statement released by the club Monday evening. "In order to gain a quality piece, we gave up a quality player in Dax McCarty, but we feel that De Rosario is a game-changer that will help us in our push for the playoffs."
De Rosario is a five-time MLS All-Star, four-time MLS Cup winner and two-time MLS Cup MVP. The 33-year old was previously traded to New York from Toronto FC on April 1. So far this season, De Rosario has recorded three goals and five assists in 14 total appearances for Toronto and New York. The Canadian international previously helped San Jose win the MLS Cup in 2001 and 2003, and also helped lead the Houston Dynamo to back-to-back MLS Cups in 2006 and 2007.
In return, D.C. United has traded away McCarty, an accomplished midfielder himself who just didn't fit in with Olsen's system. McCarty was acquired last November from the expansion Portland Timbers for Rodney Wallace and a 2011 fourth-round MLS SuperDraft pick. McCarty made 13 appearances and 11 starts for United this season, tallying two assists in 946 minutes of play.
"Dwayne is a proven champion in our league and will add significant firepower to our attack," D.C. United General Manager Dave Kasper said in the club's release. Kasper also revealed in an interview with the club's official website that United had been working on the trade "for about a month."
"Today we got a lot better," Kasper said in that interview. "Now, we need to get the pieces on the same page and gelling in a short amount of time."
For his part, McCarty did appear to have some notice of the pending deal, tweeting enigmatically moments before the trade was announced, "Every1 get ready for it in......5....4.....3....2....1...."
That was followed by this valedictory note of thanks from the midfielder, "This business is NUTS!! DCU fans, its been a pleasure, truly the class of the league.That said, cant wait 2 get 2 NY! Appreciate the support."
D.C. United also acquired defender Brandon McDonald from San Jose for allocation money in a separate trade Monday. McDonald started eight games for the Earthquakes this season.