With the international transfer window opening up shortly, the Kansas City Wizards have brought in a couple of trialists in a bid to add to their attack.
Skilled Jamaican midfielder Jermaine Hue and Finnish national team veteran Antti Sumiala began a week-long trial period with the MLS club on Monday.
The 27-year-old Hue enjoyed some recent success in the CONCACAF Gold Cup as he scored two goals for Jamaica in the tournament -- one against Guatemala and one against South Africa -- as the Reggae Boyz reached the quarterfinals where they lost to the USA. At 5-foot-8 and 153 pounds, Hue's main attributes lie in his vision and passing ability.
Sumiala is a 31-year-old forward who has traversed Europe during his career beginning with Anderlecht's youth academy before stints in Denmark, Belgium, Germany, Turkey, Sweden and Liechtenstein. The 5-foot-10, 170-pound striker earned 38 caps for Finland, scoring nine goals from 1992 until 2004, and is listed as an active player on the Finland national team website.
Although too early to make any judgments, Wizards boss Bob Gansler took time to comment on the two and his current stable of players.
"(Sumiala) is still trying to figure out what end is up, and Hue was here yesterday, so we'll take a look," Gansler said. "The key here is for our good players to play better, but we are also looking for some good players."
Hue's appeal is obvious, while Sumiala's case may spur some questions.
"The thing that made me take another look quickly was the fact that he's played 38, 40 times for the Finnish national team and has played with good players there. I have some connections there; I called them and they said, 'Yeah, he's a useful player,'" said Gansler.
"Is he still at his peak or is he descending? That's what we have to determine. Finland has had some surprising results over the years and he has been a part of that. He's played in big arenas and against good players and with good players, so we'll see what he's got left."
Kansas City currently has one senior international player in midfielder Diego Walsh, and three youth internationals in Jamaican defender Shavar Thomas, rookie forward Scott Sealy and midfielder Khari Stephenson. Gansler and GM Curt Johnson reportedly have sufficient room under the salary cap for a mid-priced player who would hopefully restore their goal production.
Robert Rusert is a contributor to MLSnet.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Soccer or its clubs.