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Damani Richards to Union deal still “in the works”

On Wednesday evening, a post on the Trinidad & Tobago national team website reported that 18-year-old defender Damani Richards has signed a one-year deal with the Philadelphia Union.

While the Union has not confirmed the report, a source with knowledge of the situation tells PSP “there is a deal in the works for Richards.”

The source tells PSP that the paperwork on the deal is at the league office awaiting approval.

Richards is familiar with the Union after trialling with the club in October. On Oct. 12, Richards played 90 minutes in the Union’s 1–0 Reserve League loss to DC United.

Richards said of the trial, “It’s been a great experience. This was an opportunity to get some exposure away from home and it opened my eyes up to a few things. It’s a lot faster out here.”

According to Wednesday’s report from Trinidad & Tobago, Richards arrived in Philadelphia on Wednesday.

The report also says that Richards’ agent, Andre Fortune—who also happens to be Keon Daniel’s agent—says the one year deal includes an option to be extended by two more years.

Richards, previously on the T&T U-17 team, first appeared for the T&T U-20 team in the 2-1 win over Guyana on August 8, 2012 in the opening of their Caribbean Football Union U-20 World Cup qualification campaign. The U-20s eventually were knocked out of the qualifiers after a 1-0 loss to Curacao on Nov. 10.

The defender previously was on the roster of TT Pro-League club W-Connection.

Richards said of the reported deal with the Union, “I am looking forward to making full use of this opportunity and better my understanding of the game and my readiness for a higher level on the international stage.”



  1. Serious question: do other MLS teams have these problems with getting things done in a timely manner (i.e., before international media go public)? The Union seem particularly inept in this regard.

    • The European teams operate in the same manner, as far as I can tell. I think it’s exactly the same for all teams, once they are competing for international-quality players. Frankly, it’s flattering to MLS that their players are tracked on the transfer markets. Be happy.

    • Ed Farnsworth says:

      Keep in mind that ultimately these deals are done according to the league’s sense of timing, not the teams, because the league is the entity that owns player contracts.

  2. Would be the first of the late summer and fall trialists to sign a deal. Trialed as a LB in that reserve match. Defensive depth is a +, but seems like a left back to grow on, maybe not one to start right away. Think this throws a wrench in the “drafting a LB” assumption?

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