Barreiro waiting on MLS Draft
After working out at the combine, midfielder awaits word on future
January 12, 2012, 12:13 am·
Michael Chien | DP
Many students come to Penn with dreams to become a nurse, a teacher or even an investment banker. But senior Christian Barreiro had another goal in mind.
Actually he has many goals on his mind.
This past week, the 5-foot-7 attacking midfielder began the formal process of interviewing for a job when he attended the Major League Soccer Combine in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. He now must wait for his name to be called Thursday in Kansas City, Mo., at the MLS SuperDraft.
The senior traveled to the Combine on Jan. 5 and played three games over the course of five days in front of coaches and technical staff from each of the 19 MLS teams.
“A lot of the kids haven’t played since the NCAA Tournament,” Barreiro said. “[They just tried] to work themsleves into games and show what they were here for, and in the end it was a great experience for everyone.”
The camp’s 67 prospects were divided into four teams, and although Barreiro’s team, Prime, didn’t win any of its three matchups, he understood it was more about development.
“I just focused on playing simple, finding the open guy and moving off the ball,” Barreiro said.
“Unfortunately we didn’t win any of our games, but the results were in the back of everyone’s mind — it was more about showing their talent and putting in an honest game’s effort.”
This season, Barreiro was a first-team All-Ivy selection for the second-straight year, leading the Quakers with seven goals and seven assists.
“He’s a very technical player with great vision and strikes the ball very well,” Penn men’s soccer coach Rudy Fuller said.
Barreiro’s draft prospects have remained relatively stable throughout the combine. After a quiet first game, he came on strong in the last two contests.
The MLS SuperDraft has two rounds — down from three last year — with 19 picks in each round.
However, like in other sports, the league’s draft is a poor indicator of future success, as many top picks fail to make senior team rosters.
In other words, if Barreiro isn’t selected Thursday, it wouldn’t necessarily end his chance to play in the MLS.
“It’ll be interesting to see,” Fuller said. “It would be great if Christian got drafted in the two-round SuperDraft tomorrow. Realistically, it’s probably not going to happen. But it wouldn’t surprise me at all if he’s drafted in the Supplemental Draft.”
Since the inception of the MLS, the league has had a supplemental draft sporadically throughout the years. Due to the expansion of developmental rosters and the creation of reserve teams, the league instituted a supplemental draft for this year. Taking place on Jan. 17, it will feature an additional 76 selections.
No matter what happens Thursday, Barreiro will continue to pursue his goal. He will be waiting for a job, but tirelessly working toward his dream.