On transfer deadline day, Vancouver Whitecaps FC traded centre back Christian Dean to Chicago Fire and acquired Aaron Maund from Real Salt Lake.
Vancouver Whitecaps coach Carl Robinson was open about his need for cover at the centre back in the days leading up to the close of the secondary MLS transfer window. On the final day of the window, he got his wish.
A few hours after trading Christian Dean to Chicago Fire for $50,000 of General Allocation Money (with a possible $50,000 of Targeted Allocation Money to follow if he makes 12 or more 2018 regular season starts for Chicago), the Whitecaps announced the signing of center back Aaron Maund from Real Salt Lake on Wednesday.
Thus ends Christian Dean’s Whitecaps career, very much a story of “what might have been”. Drafted in 2014 as a Generation adidas player, Dean struggled to make an impact on the first team for Vancouver. He made 21 appearances for the Whitecaps across all competitions in four seasons. After spending 2015 on loan with Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 in the USL, he was ready to challenge for a starting spot last year. However, a torn meniscus meant he didn’t make a single appearance in 2016.
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Dean entered 2017 competing with Cole Seiler for the third-choice center back position, with David Edgar having suffered a season-ending injury. However, Seiler has not impressed when called upon, and Dean has continued to struggle with injury. As a result, Robinson has opted for midfielder Andrew Jacobson in central defence whenever Kendall Waston has been absent.
A stellar performance by Dean against Philadelphia in the season opener was followed by an error-strewn match against San Jose. Dean’s only other appearance this season was as part of an ill-fated back three as the Whitecaps fell 3-0 to Real Salt Lake in the snow.
Maund provides experience
Seeing as Dean’s last appearance for Vancouver was against RSL, it seems appropriate that his replacement comes from that same team. Two years older and with 79 MLS appearances to Dean’s 12, Aaron Maund brings some experience to Vancouver’s depth chart. Robinson wanted defensive cover, and he now has it.
Maund is not an addition that will excite Whitecaps fans, but he’s a solid acquisition. He’s also cheaper than Dean, at $174k guaranteed compensation for 2017. For comparison, Dean is on $202k guaranteed compensation, a legacy of his Generation adidas contract not counting towards the salary cap until he graduated from the program at the beginning of the year.
Considering the ‘Caps have picked up at least $50,000 in GAM, while only spending a third round draft pick on Maund, it’s a good piece of business. They’ve also picked up experienced cover in defence. Dean should also benefit from a change of scenery, making this a good move all around.