FC Dallas Acquires Marcelo Saragosa and Alex Smith
FRISCO, Texas (Wednesday, July 19, 2006) - FC Dallas today acquired Brazilian midfielder Marcelo Saragosa and former SMU forward Alex Smith. Saragosa's rights were acquired from the Los Angeles Galaxy in exchange for the Hoops natural second round pick in the 2007 MLS Supplemental Draft. FCD acquired the rights to Smith from the Kansas City Wizards in exchange for the team's natural fourth round pick in the 2007 MLS Supplemental Draft.
A product of the famous youth system of famous Brazilian club Sao Paolo, Saragosa joined the Galaxy in March 2004 and went on to start 24 of the 26 games that he appeared in that season. After returning to Sao Paolo following the 2004 MLS campaign, Saragosa re-joined the Galaxy in September 2005 and played in five of the club's final six regular season games. He also played in two of L.A.'s four MLS Cup playoff games en route to the 2005 MLS Cup Championship. The 24-year old central midfielder played in 10 games for the Galaxy this season before being waived late last month. He was not claimed off waivers at the time so the Galaxy retained his right. He becomes the team's fourth Youth International player and will occupy the final spot on the 18-man Senior Roster.
The 21-year old Smith joins Dallas after training with the club for the last two months. As a sophomore at SMU in 2004, he led the Mustangs in scoring with 13 goals and four assists in 19 games. He also helped the team to regular season and tournament titles in the Missouri Valley Conference and a spot in the Third Round of the NCAA Tournament. Prior to playing at SMU, Smith spent the 2003 season at Centenary in Shreveport, La., where he tallied six goals and six assists in 17 games.
In the summer of 2005, Smith went to England and had trials at Shrewsbury Town and Walsall. He returned to SMU in the fall of 2005 but was declared ineligible by the NCAA. Following a month long trial with the Kansas City Wizards in January of this year, Smith came to Dallas, for whom he has appeared in four Reserve Division games, making three starts.
A 2002 graduate of Langham Creek High School in Houston, Smith was a teammate of current FC Dallas midfielder Arturo Alvarez at Bear Creek United soccer club. Though he was never contracted by the Wizards, they retained Smith's rights after placing a discovery pick on him.
Forward Roberto Mina (Ecuador), midfielder Ramon Nunez (Honduras), and forward Dominic Oduro (Ghana) occupy the remaining three Youth International slots. Mark Wilson (England), Simo Valakari (Findland), and Carlos Ruiz (Guatemala) currently hold three of the four Senior International spots. Newly acquired goalkeeper Shaka Hislop (Trinidad and Tobago) will occupy the fourth Senior International spot once he is eligible to join the team. Once Hislop is eligible, FCD will have to free a spot on the 18-man Senior Roster in order to accommodate the keeper.
Smith will join the Developmental Roster, taking the place of midfielder Mario Torres who was waived. Torres was the first player ever to sign for FC Dallas directly out of the Dallas Hispanic Soccer Leagues. He made 19 appearances for the FC Dallas Reserves, tallying three goals and adding four assists.
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