Los Angeles Soccer: KSV Roeselare
CARSON -- Tristan Bowen's loan deal in Belgium is running out, and Chivas USA will soon need to decide what to do with him. It's too early to tell at the moment.
The 21-year-old striker from Van Nuys has been off gaining experience at second-tier KSV Roeselare since late August. He's made 23 first-team appearances, a dozen of them starts, over 31 games, scoring three goals.
KSVR's final match in the second-tier Tweedeklasse is Sunday at FC Brussels, and he won't be eligible to return to Chivas' lineup until June 27, when the summer transfer window opens.
“We have a plan to go see him, to see whether he makes sense for us come back or if we want him back,” general manager Jose Domene said following Chivas' MLS Reserve League game Monday against Seattle. “We'll see. [Roselare does not] have an option to buy him, it's just whether he comes back or we loan him again.”
Bowen, a Home Grown Player that Chivas acquired in a trade from the Galaxy in December 2010 -- about three weeks before Robin Fraser was hired -- has received playing time with Roeselare that would have been impossible with the Goats. He's a raw talent with good potential, but he made only three MLS appearances (covering 63 minutes) in five months with Chivas last year, along with one in the U.S. Open Cup and two in the MLS Reserve League.
Roeselare has used him in 22 league games and one Belgian Cup match for a total of 927 minutes -- a little more than 10 full games. He scored goals in a Jan. 14 victory over Eendracht Aalst (two minutes after coming on as a late substitute), a loss March 3 to AFC Tubize (giving KSVR a 10th-minute lead) and a draw April 14 at KSK Heist (providing a 12th-minute lead).
Fraser, asked in Bowen was in his plans, noted that “certainly for the first part of the season, we figure he's going to be gone, and we're focused on the group we have at the moment. Certainly he can be contributing member. We've seen Tristan be a good player. So depending on what happens with his situation in Belgium, then we're always excited about having good players.”
Huntington Beach's Sacha Kljestan (Huntington Beach HS) is expected to be in Belgian power RSC Anderlecht's midfield for a Group L home game against AEK Athens.
Former UCLA star goalkeeper Brad Friedel, who is Tottenham's starter in league games, figures to back up Carlo Cudicini or Heurelho Gomes as Spurs head to Greece to take on PAOK Salonika in Group A of Europe's No. 2 club competition.
Kljestan's influence is growing at Anderlecht, where he had a roller-coaster first season but nailed down a starting job, with some very good reviews, last spring.
The Mauves met AEK in Europa group play last year, too, winning at home, 3-0, without Kljestan.
TWO DEBUTS?: Van Nuys' Tristan Bowen made his debut for his new club, but Michael Bradley will have to wait another week.
Bowen, on loan from Chivas USA to Belgian second-division side KSV Roeselare, went the the full 90 up front in a scoreless tie Sunday with Standaard Wetteren.
Bradley, whose family lives in the South Bay, was on the 18-man game roster but did not play for Italy's Chievo Verona in a 2-2 tie against Novara in its Italian Serie A opener. The Flying Donkeys play this weekend at Parma.
The Goats on Friday passed on the chance to add the Mexican Primera Division veteran to their roster, the third time they've declined a player available through the league's allocation process.
Ochoa (Riverside Poly HS), 24, who has spent the past five years with Estudiantes Tecos, signed Wednesday with MLS and was allocated Friday to the Seattle Sounders.
“We passed on Ochoa,” Chivas head coach Robin Fraser said in a text message Friday afternoon. “Roster spot and salary cap reasons.”
Earlier Friday, Fraser said “the considerations [in making a decision] really are salary and salary-cap implications and roster spots and things like that. Certainly, he's a player who is interesting, interesting because of the route he's gone and where he's been and what he's done. Certainly, roster-spot and salary-cap implications are of paramount importance.”
Chivas, which sits atop the league's allocation table, previously passed when it had first refusal on U.S. national team midfielders Benny Feilhaber, who went to New England, and Freddy Adu, who joined Philadelphia.
Houston and Toronto FC had next calls on Ochoa, but both passed, and the Sounders acquired him after trading a third-round selection in next year's SuperDraft to Chicago to trade spots in the allocation order. Seattle moved up from sixth to fourth. Ochoa was on trial with the Sounders in early June.
Chivas started the year in the fourth slot on the table, based on 2010 results. The Goats moved to the top when Vancouver, Portland and D.C. United acquired players through the allocation mechanism, which is used to distribute U.S. national-teamers and players who previously turned down MLS contracts. Ochoa played for the U.S. at the 2005 FIFA U-20 World Cup and for the U-23 national team during preparations for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
NAGAMURA OUT: Midfielder Paulo Nagamura suffered a broken fifth metatarsal in Wednesday's loss at Portland and has undergone surgery to repair his right foot. Fraser noted that he'd had the same injury four times during his playing career, and the longest he was sidelined was eight weeks.