Montreal Impact select Brian Ching
NEW YORK -- The Montreal Impact made Houston forward Brian Ching the first pick in the Major League Soccer expansion draft, even though he has threatened to retire rather than leave the Dynamo.
The Impact become the league's 19th team next season and selected 10 players Wednesday from 272 left unprotected.
"We have the utmost respect for Brian, both as a player and a person," Impact coach Jesse Marsch said. "He made it clear he does not want to come here but we think he represents good value. There are teams in the league who think the same thing. I want to consider what is best for Brian's future but I also want to consider what it best for the future of our club."
If unable to persuade the 33-year-old to play in Montreal, the Impact may trade him back to the Dynamo or elsewhere.
"It's a reality of the business," Marsch said. "If you want to be a professional player, you must be open to the possibility of moving. It happens to all players and it will continue to happen. We believe he's an excellent player. We'd bet on him here. If he doesn't come, we'll look at another scenario to improve our club."
Montreal also took Chivas USA defender Zarek Valentin, Philadelphia midfielder Justin Mapp, San Jose defender Bobby Burling, Vancouver midfielder Jeb Brovsky, Salt Lake midfielder Collen Warner, Columbus defender Josh Gardner, Colorado midfielder Sanna Nyassi, Seattle defender James Riley and Kansas City defender Seth Sinovic.
In a separate waiver draft, Philadelphia took Vancouver midfielder Nizar Khalfan.
Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press