Former Real Madrid, Benfica players among Union trialists

Photo: Earl Gardner

Former Real Madrid, Benfica and Blackburn players are among the trialists in camp with Philadelphia Union this week.

Joining them are former Villanova midfielder Mike Seamon, former Union midfielder Fred, and former U.S. youth international and Toronto FC attacker Fuad Ibrahim, according to a Union official.

Not all the players will join the Union in traveling to Florida when their preseason camp moves there in February, but some will likely make the trip.

Here is a quick rundown of the trialists.

The 25-year-old former All-American played for Reading United in 2011. He spent the 2012 season with Harrisburg but couldn’t beat out incumbent Nick Noble. He played with FC Tucson in the PDL last year. He also trained with both the Portland Timbers and the Union in 2013. He is also the goalkeepers coach at the University of Omaha. Knock on him is he’s only 5-10, which is short for a goalkeeper, but then again, so is Nick Rimando.

The 25-year-old Villanova grad is a native of Rahway, N.J. He was drafted in 2010 by the Seattle Sounders, but he never broke into the lineup as a regular in three years with the club. He played for the Pittsburgh Riverhounds in 2013.

Fred, 34, played for the Union in 2010, scoring four goals. He was the Australian league’s player of the year in 2007. Fred has spent his career playing in his native Brazil, Australia and North America. He spent the last three years playing with Melbourne Heart in Australia.

Ramirez is a PA Classics and Union youth academy player from the Harrisburg area who has featured in Union reserve games in the past.

Ibrahim, 22, spent last year playing in Finland’s second division. He is a former U.S. youth international who played for Hackworth as a teenager. Dallas drafted him in 2007 when he was just 15 years old and later traded him to Toronto, where he scored three goals in sporadic playing time. He has been capped 10 times for Ethiopia.

The 21-year-old right-footed winger spent more than a decade in Real Madrid’s youth academy before moving to Ontinyent FC in Spain’s third division in September 2013.

Cohen was a two-time Division 2 All-American while playing for UC San Diego. He played for Brazilian club Gremio’s youth academy at age 15, living alone in Brazil for 3 months. He stands 6-1.

The 19-year-old Portugal youth international recently signed with Harrisburg, so he is unlikely to join the Union just yet. He was previously on the books at Blackburn and Portuguese side SC Olhanense, who he joined as a youth. While with Blackburn, he went on loan with a team in India, of all places, likely a casualty of the Indian chicken farmers who ruined took over Blackburn.

Bauque is 19-year-old Mozambican international who was on the books at Benfica last year. He previously played in Mozambique’s first division.

Check out PSP’s photo essay from Wednesday’s open training session to put names to faces.


  1. Interesting!

  2. Where have you gone, Real Madrid trialists of yesteryear? Whither Jordi Vidal? http://www.transfermarkt.co.uk/en/jordi-vidal/leistungsdaten/spieler_282679.html

  3. Don Anding Where Have You Gone? says:

    Is there a reason we don’t have a left back on trial? In camp in any capacity? This is Don Anding II. It’s been a great offseason, but we really do need someone for that slot.

    • They drafted Derschang for left back, and still have Gaddis and Fabinho. That’s probably it for now.

      • Don Anding Fan Club says:

        So, we have (1) Don Anding Jr., (2) a very talented right back with a weak left foot, and (3) a guy who proved last year that he’s such a stiff that they needed to play a right back with a weak left foot out of position. In a great offseason, this is a gaping wound.

      • Derschang has already played as a left back so he is not a project like Anding was. Also, having Gaddis as our left back would not be a gaping wound in my opinion. Ideally we would want someone with a left foot but we could certainly do a lot worse than Gaddis at that position

      • Eli Pearlman-Storch says:

        Kyle. The only problem is that with all of these very narrow 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 projected formations, an attacking left back is essential. And attacking in this context means, able to attack up the left flank. Gaddis can’t offer you that, which results in teams being able to close off the field and focus on the center, plus it results in inadequate to Maidana, the only true creative player who will likely be out there.

      • i agree with you, i was just saying that this problem is probably not on the level of gaping wound

    • Eli Pearlman-Storch says:

      inadequate support I mean to say.

  4. Odds to stick for opening day, bunch of longshots but who knows? 10-1 is default, 20-1 means I doubt it, 5-1 means maybe.

    Holt 20-1
    Seamon 10-1
    Fred 5-1
    Ramirez 20-1
    Ibrahim 5-1
    Barril 10-1
    Cohen 20-1
    Edinho Junior 10-1
    Bauque 10-1


  5. Thanks for the coverage.

  6. Sign this Jose Barril. Massive upgrade over Cruz. Probably cheaper too.

    • We had [at least] 2 players on the roster last season who were massive upgrades over Cruz – Le Toux & Marfan. Part of me dreads seeing the lineup on the 8th because of the lingering suspicion that Cruz will be at RM. This is what this coaching staff has done to me.

  7. This post has been updated to reflect corrected information on trialist Chris Ramirez. This post was written before photos were available, but once we published one, an alert reader pointed out the case of mistaken identity in the information that was provided to us.

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