- The Washington Times - Monday, November 15, 2004

Freddy Adu, 15, became the youngest athlete to win a championship in a major American professional league yesterday when D.C. United captured MLS Cup 2004.

Adu surpassed Detroit pitcher Art Houtteman, who was 18 years, 64 days old when the Tigers won the 1945 World Series.

“I didn’t know that at all,” Adu said. “All I know is that this makes me an MLS champion. This is the biggest thing I’ve ever won.”

Adu, who replaced Alecko Eskandarian in the 65th minute, demonstrated a mature attitude about playing time.

“Even if I didn’t get out on the field, I was just going to cheer my heart out on the bench,” he said. “I got the opportunity to go in, and I felt like I took advantage of it. All we needed to do was to preserve the lead, and we did just that.”

Moreno, Nelsen among Best

Forward Jaime Moreno and defender Ryan Nelsen represented United on the MLS Best 11 announced Saturday night.

Nelsen made the team for the second consecutive year. Moreno made it for the third time in his career and the first since 1999.

Kansas City placed defender Jimmy Conrad and midfielder Kerry Zavagnin on the team.

Also honored were Colorado goalkeeper Joe Cannon, former United defender Eddie Pope of the MetroStars, Columbus defender Robin Fraser, Dallas midfielder Ronnie O’Brien, MetroStars midfielders Amado Guevara and Eddie Gaven, and San Jose forward Brian Ching.

Stewart back to Holland

Midfielder Earnie Stewart will leave United and continue his career in the Netherlands, where he said he expects to play “at least a half a year but possibly a year and a half.”

Stewart, 35, spent nearly 13 seasons in the Dutch Honor Division before moving to United last year. He also played for the United States in the past three World Cups.

“I have two clubs that I’m dealing with right now,” said Stewart, who holds Dutch and American citizenship.

What about Stewart’s career with the national team?

“I have no clue, to tell you the truth,” he said. “I think it’s over but anytime they would need me, I’d be more than willing and happy to help them out.”

MLS to expand rosters

MLS will expand team rosters to 28 players next year, with each team able to sign four senior international players, deputy commissioner Ivan Gazidis said.

Ten of the 12 teams can sign three transitional internationals. The two expansion teams, Real Salt Lake and Chivas USA, can have five transitional internationals apiece for the next two seasons.

Senior internationals are foreign players 25 or older who do not have green cards. Transitional internationals are younger than 24.

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