CHIVAS USA: Dieuze, Minda on the way?

December, 19, 2011
12/19/11
3:20
PM PT

Chivas USA's roster could soon be bolstered by the additions of two more midfielders, Frenchman Nicolas Dieuze and Ecuadoran Oswaldo Minda.


Both have been in head coach Robin Fraser's sights for some time, and although the club has announced nothing on either of them, their signings are thought to be imminent if not completed.

Dieuze, 32, who has played alongside Chivas assistant coach Greg Vanney and midfielder Laurent Courtois, spent part of October on trial with the Goats, playing 45 minutes in an MLS Reserve League victory over Vancouver.

Chivas has been looking at Dieuze since his contract with second-tier French side Grenoble Foot 38 ended last spring, and his acquisition is expected to be completed soon, his representative told MLS-News, a French website that focuses on America's league.

Dieuze played with Courtois at Toulouse from 1999 to 2001 and was Vanney's teammate at Bastia from 2001 through 2003. He then returned to Toulouse for five years, spent a season with Le Havre and two at Grenoble.

“I think he's an excellent two-way midfielder,” Vanney said in October. “He's an interesting player. We're always looking to gain some experience. ... He was always one of the fitter players -- he's a guy who can cover ground. Extremely fit, hard-nosed, yet has technique. He's a leader, was a captain at Toulouse for a while and helped them into the [UEFA] Champions League.”

Minda earlier this month told Guayaquil daily El Universo he'd been offered a three-year contract by the Goats, and he says he's coming to Los Angeles. Saturday's title-series finale in Ecuador's Serie A was his final game for Deportivo Quito, where he's played since 2008.

“Dear God, this is so amazing,” Minda told reporters after Deportivo Quito toppled Emelec to claim its third national title in four years. “This club has given me so much. ... It's a shame I have to leave this institution that has given me everything and now gives me these tears. That has helped me and given me so much love.

“I came [to Quito] fulfilling a dream, and I'm reaching another.”

Fraser, who wasn't available for comment Monday, said earlier this month that Minda was “a talented, intense, focused player that we've identified that we have interest in.”

ELSEWHERE: In other MLS news ...

Columbus signed central defender Chad Marshall (Riverside/Rubidoux HS) to a contract extension that will keep him with the Crew through 2015. No terms were announced, but Marshall, 27, a two-time MLS Defender of the Year, made $250,000 last season.

Montreal signed Canadian international Patrice Bernier, 32, a Quebec native who played for the Impact in the second tier a decade ago. The defensive midfielder has been in Europe since 2003 and has been with Danish club Lyngby since August.

Philadelphia midfielder Amobi Okugo spent a week training with Freiburg and told soccer blog The USA 10 Kit that the German club told him they'd be in contact with his agents. Okugo, 20, left UCLA following his freshman season to sign a Generation adidas deal and was the No. 6 pick in the 2010 draft.

UC Santa Barbara junior Sam Garza has accepted a Generation adidas contract offer, the Soccer By Ives blog reports. UCLA's Kelyn Rowe and Chandler Hoffman also are considering GA deals, and Rowe, SBI says, has European options.

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