CHIVAS USA: Keeper job goes to Melia

One of Chivas USA's open goalkeeper slots is going to Tim Melia, a two-year Real Salt Lake backup who has seen far more action from loan deals than in Major League Soccer.

The Goats have signed the 25-year-old netminder but have not yet announced the deal, a club official confirmed.

Melia, a third-string keeper at RSL, did not appear for the Utahns' first team, but he was on several 18-man game rosters last season and made seven appearances in the MLS Reserve League.

Melia, who played collegiately at Oneonta State and Lynn, Fla., joined RSL in 2010 after two seasons with the second-tier Rochester Rhinos. He spent most of 2010 on loan to the Charleston Battery, helping the club to the USL Second Division title, and had a loan stint last year with USL Pro side FC New York. He was waived Nov. 23.

Fraser, of course, was an RSL assistant coach in 2010.

Chivas returns starting goalkeeper Dan Kennedy but has jettisoned his two backups, Zach Thornton, who is expected to retire, and Sergio Arias, who returned to Guadalajara and was loaned to Mexican second-tier club Irapuato.

Kevin Guppy, a league pool goalkeeper out of Cal State Northridge who trains with Chivas USA and has served as backup for the Goats, Galaxy and other clubs, is expected to compete for the other job in the nets.

Chivas' preseason camp began Sunday with physicals, and the team will on the field Monday morning. The MLS opener is March 11 against Houston at Home Depot Center.

WORTH NOTING: Sources say former Kansas City and Real Salt Lake defender Rauwshan McKenzie also will be in Chivas' training camp. Fraser in 2010 coached McKenzie at RSL. The former Michigan State standout has made 11 league appearances in four seasons.

ELSEWHERE: In other MLS news ...

  • FC Dallas central defender George John, one of MLS's hottest properties, is joining England's West Ham United on a two-month loan. And reports from Brazil claim Hoops winger Jackson Goncalves, who was with the club on loan from Sao Paulo, is being loaned this year in country to Cruzeiro.

  • Chicago has parted company with Uruguayan forward Diego Chaves after signing Colombian midfielder Rafael Robayo and Uruguayan forward Federico Puppa.

  • With Tim Ream expected to sign in England with Bolton, New York has acquired Swedish defender Markus Holgersson. The Red Bulls also picked up forward Kenny Cooper from Portland in a draft-day trade.