Kwame Watson Siriboe never stood a chance at Real Salt Lake. Despite being 6-foot-3-inches tall and weighing 200 pounds, the odds were stacked against him ever getting back on to the pitch.
Not with fellow defender Chris Schuler playing in Watson-Siriboe's spot, and scoring a brace recently. Not with Aaron Maund playing in the same position as Watson-Siriboe and Schuler. Certainly not with Carlos Salcedo, Nat Borchers and the six other defenders remaining on RSL's roster.
And definitely not when Watson-Siriboe himself tore his anterior cruciate ligament last season, rendering him helpless in a meaningless reserve league game against a team from USL Pro.
That game that didn't count in the standings did count in the big picture. It would be the last game Watson-Siriboe would ever play in a claret and cobalt kit--even if RSL remained hopeful that the UConn product would get back in the lineup at some point as he continued to work back to full fitness.
Then Watson-Siriboe was traded to New York City FC, now the home of Jason Kreis, RSL's former coach, on Mon. Aug. 11. The move put a slight dent in RSL's glut of center backs--but certainly didn't render them helpless, by any means.
Does this mean Kreis will start making a run on other players who can't crack RSL's starting lineup? Nobody seems to know for sure, but anything is possible with the kind of money NYCFC has at its disposal.
Besides, Watson-Siriboe hadn't played much at RSL since coming over in 2012 from the Chicago Fire in a trade. He suited up 12 times for RSL his first year, starting in 10 matches while Schuler mended from his own severe injuries.
Watson-Siriboe also started seven matches last season before he tore his ACL. He'll now rejoin his former coach at NYCFC and hopefully regain the form that saw him start a number of important games for RSL and Kreis.
"I’m delighted to be reuniting with Jason Kreis and [former RSL assistant] Miles Joseph," Watson-Siriboe said in a press release Monday. "I had a great working relationship with Coach Kreis, I’m looking forward to continuing under his leadership.
"I already know what he expects from his defenders and I am confident that I will be able to contribute effectively from the moment I begin training in January. I feel strong, fit and am excited to start working hard for my new club and for the NYCFC supporters."