- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 25, 2002

D.C. United is actively shopping second-year midfielder Mark Lisi in an attempt to create salary cap room for a high-priced international player.
Lisi, 24, has been offered to the New York/New Jersey MetroStars, Dallas Burn and Colorado Rapids. The MetroStars seem to be in the best position to make a deal because they have two first-round draft picks in next February's Major League Soccer SuperDraft.
United selected Lisi out of Clemson with the third overall pick of the 2001 MLS draft. Under first-year United coach Ray Hudson, he has played 85 minutes in five matches this season.
"I'd love to stay, but I want to play," Lisi said. "I've heard some things about us trying to get some other players in maybe a defender, maybe a center midfielder but in order to do that you have to cut down on our cap. I don't know if it's going to be two of us or three of us to leave soon."
Certainly, somebody will have to go. United has conducted serious tryouts for five players recently. Scottish forward Paul Dalglish, son of former Liverpool legend Kenny Dalglish, made the biggest impression. Dalglish currently plays for Wigan Athletic of the English Second Division and would have to take a considerable pay cut to play in MLS.
With the uncertain status of star forward Jaime Moreno, who is returning from offseason knee surgery, Hudson is reluctant to make a Dalglish deal if Moreno can return to previous form soon.
United has approximately $50,000 room under the league's stringent $1.7million cap. If United trades Lisi, who makes around $40,000 per season, that probably would not be enough to lure Dalglish to MLS. If United releases or trades ineffective forward Abdul Thompson Conteh, who earns about $75,000, along with Lisi, then United would have plenty of money under its cap to fit Dalglish.
During a weeklong trial, Dalglish, 25, proved to Hudson that he is a clinical finisher. Thus far this season, United has struggled to get anything out of its forward line. Dalglish would be a welcome addition to what has been a stale strike force.
"Let's be honest: Abdul has been underwhelming," Hudson said. "I wouldn't say he has been horrendous, but he hasn't been able to carry the weight up front. [Kenny Dalglish] has been on the phone with us two or three times and said how much Paul loved it here loved the guys, loved the setup and wants to come. It comes to the salary cap."

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