Ryan Nelsen

Behind the badge: Catching up with Convey, Nelsen

After missing the team's season-opening match due to an ankle injury, former D.C. United captain Ryan Nelsen played the full 90 minutes in the Blackburn Rover's 2-1 loss to Fulham last Sunday. The central defender joined the English Premier League side following the Black-and-Red's 2004 MLS Cup Championship. Nelsen made a great impression upon joining his new team and was even named as the squad's captain for a number of games. He was rewarded for his stellar play with a new contract during the offseason.

Bobby Convey, another former United standout who joined Reading FC midway through 2004, had his best game with the Coca-Cola Championship (English second tier) side, notching his first goals for the club in a 5-0 win over the Lions of Millwall. Three games into the season, Reading is atop the table, as the team has managed to win all three of their outings to earn nine points. They are tied for first place with Sheffield United. Convey also has two assists in the division, tied for first place. Convey's first goal came when he made a 70-yard run down the left side, beat two players and coolly struck the ball from just inside the goal box.

"I would say my first goal was one of my best," said Convey after the game. "It had a bit of everything to it. It's my first for Reading so that makes it a bit special too. The manager told me he wanted me to be a leader and show why I should be playing every week."

Trialist returns
This week, D.C. United welcome back to training a local player who spent time with the team during this year's pre-season: Stephen deRoux. He spent a good portion of February with United after an impressive performance in an invitation-only amateur tryout. The speedy midfielder broke his foot, however, and had to have surgery, ending his trial.

DeRoux was named to the Washinton Post All-Met team in 2001 following a four-goal, 12-assist season with High Point High School. He also helped lead the team to the Maryland 4A South Region Championship.

As a member of Prince George's Community College in College Park, Md., deRoux was named a Junior College Second Team All-American in 2002.

MLS Select Jaime Moreno and Nick Rimando joined the MLS Select team in Madrid for Tuesday's exhibition match against Real Madrid for the Trofeo Santiago Bernabéu in Madrid, Spain. Moreno was featured in coach Steve Nicol's (New England Revolution) first XI, being paired with Los Angeles Galaxy striker Landon Donovan. His stay was not extended, however, as he left the field in the 24th minute due to injury. Rimando entered the game in the 88th minute, allowing a goal in Real's 5-0 victory.

Stay connected: Get access to breaking news, videos, and analysis from North America's best soccer reporters via "This Week in MLS" newsletter or using our FREE mobile app.