BALTIMORE -- For many college kids, the MLS SuperDraft can be an uncertain and unpredictable time.
In a surprise move Thursday, the Philadelphia Union traded general allocation money and a player to be named later to the Colorado Rapids for the No. 2 overall pick, where they took Yaro. Moments later, the Union selected Rosenberry -- a Philly-area native who spent time with the club’s academy -- with their natural selection at No. 3.
“I’m really happy it happened that way,” Yaro said. “He’s someone that I’ve grown to know and I have a great relationship with. It’s a great opportunity for me.”
Once Wake Forest’s Jack Harrison went No. 1, it seemed likely that the Union would snag Yaro, a speedy center back that was the consensus top pick in many mock drafts.
Rosenberry, a right back, was more surprised he ended up following his ex-Hoya teammate to Philly, in part because his hometown club had already been denied a Homegrown claim on him. Rosenberry also admitted afterwards that he thought the chances of one MLS team taking two players from the same school back-to-back would be slim.
But the right back was pleasantly surprised when he heard his name called -- not only because he gets to remain teammates with Yaro but also because he gets to play in a professional stadium 50 miles from where he grew up in Ronks, Pa.
“Obviously going to a place you’re familiar with and you know the staff and you know the players, it gives you confidence,” Rosenberry said. “I’m very, very pleased with the way things turned out.”
Yaro, who was born in Ghana and played high school soccer in California, has less of a connection to the Union. But the 5-foot-11 defender said he “really respected” a team trading up to take him, adding that dropping out of the No. 1 spot was not something he “really cared about.”
And while there have been some questions about his position at the next level, Yaro believes he can help his new team best as the anchor of the backline -- perhaps with Rosenberry next to him at right back.
“I see myself as a center back, and that’s something I look forward to,” Yaro said. “But right now, I’m just trying to enjoy the moment. When the time comes, I’ll figure it out.”
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Rosenberry, too, said he would enjoy playing alongside Yaro, just like he did in college. But, of course, that's not something that will be decided yet.
For now, both players are simply excited that they get the unique opportunity to enter the next chapter of their lives together.
“I don’t want to make any assumptions and say that we’re gonna actually be on the field together,” Rosenberry said. “But it’s exciting. I know what kind of kid Josh is. He’s got such a great work ethic, a great personality. I think that’s something that’s contagious. I think that other people on the team are going to see that and feed off that, I hope.”
Dave Zeitlin covers the Union for MLSsoccer.com. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.