RYAN BACIC - Tuesday, May 14, 2013
One-time national team defender Frank Simek has not spent a single minute of his career in the United States' top flight, but that might all change soon enough.
In a release from D.C. United's official Twitter feed early Tuesday morning, the Eastern Conference cellar-dwellers announced that they have now taken the 28-year-old Simek on trial.
Simek spent his youth career with Arsenal but never featured for the parent club, moving on to Sheffield Wednesday in 2005 after loan stints at Queens Park Rangers and newly promoted Championship side Bournemouth. The right back went on to sign with League One side Carlisle United in 2010, where he would play his next three seasons, up through 2012-13.
Since before he was a teenager, then, the St. Louis native had plied his trade in England. No more.
According to Carlisle's News & Star, a clause in Simek's contract called for an automatic extension if a certain number of appearances were fulfilled, but the several-time captain also had to inform the club of his wish to stay within a 10-day window. Simek reportedly failed to do so, and he was dropped from the club April 29.
Back in the States at last, Simek seems to be hoping that a change in scenery can bring about a change in fortune.
When reached by phone Tuesday morning, D.C. United officials stressed that it is franchise policy not to comment on players who are unsigned by the club, leaving most details of the trial unknown. It remains similarly unclear as to whether or not Simek - who has five senior-team caps to his name, all of which came in 2007 - would have to go through the allocation process.
One thing we do know is that D.C. United needs all of the help it can get across its backline: The Black and Red currently rank last in Major League Soccer with 19 goals allowed on the season.