Throwback Thursday: Philadelphia Union and the 2010 MLS SuperDraft


Author Note: Each Thursday we will go back in time and look at one event. In this edition we throwback to the Philadelphia Union and the 2010 MLS SuperDraft. This piece comes on Wednesday night to prepare the viewers for Thursday and the fact that two “Throwback Thursday” pieces will be published this week.

Orlando City SC and New York City FC participated in a blind draw establishing the order for the MLS Expansion Draft and SuperDraft among other rankings. They are on their way to planning and building their respective inaugural MLS rosters. Five years ago the Philadelphia Union was in a similar place and preparing for their own inaugural MLS SuperDraft.

While the Union fight to secure a playoff spot in their fifth season, the Union were preparing to participate in the 2010 MLS SuperDraft about five years ago. In the City of Brother Love and in front of their own supporters (for the first two rounds of the draft), Philadelphia selected their first of six picks starting with the No. 1 overall pick.

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"“With the first pick in the 2010 MLS SuperDraft, the Philadelphia Union select Oregon St. University forward Danny Mwanga.”"

Something exactly like that or similar was announced as the Union made their inaugural SuperDraft selection. Danny Mwanga played with the Union until 2012. On June 6, 2012 Mwanga was traded to the Portland Timbers before being traded to the Colorado Rapids ahead of the 2013 season. Since then, he has gone on loan to NASL side New York Cosmos.

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After selecting Mwanga, the Union were busy wheeling and dealing to move up in the draft. Philadelphia acquired both the No. 6 and No. 7 picks via trades. The No. 6 pick was acquired from FC Dallas in exchange for allocation money. With that pick, they selected Amobi Okugo from UCLA. Okugo, who has played midfield and defense for Philadelphia, is one of a few “Union originals” who are still apart of the current roster.

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Moments after selecting Okugo Philadelphia exchanged the No. 1 selection in the MLS Allocation Order with DC United for the seventh pick, allocation money, and midfielder Fred who is currently on the Union’s active roster. With the No. 7 pick, the Union selected Jack McInerney.

D.C. later used the allocation pick to select goalkeeper Troy Perkins.

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Both Okugo and McInerney have since found success in MLS and were teammates for almost five seasons. Jack Mac went from unused sub to an integral part of the Union’s squad under John Hackworth in 2012 and 2013. In 2014, “Jack Mac” was traded to the Montreal Impact in exchange for Andrew Wenger.

In the second round with the 17th pick overall, the Union picked midfielder Toni Stahl. The third round saw the newest MLS franchise select Kyle Nakazawa, while taking goalkeeper and Okugo’s collegiate teammate Brian Perk in the fourth round.

More from MLS

The 2010 MLS SuperDraft was the start of things to come for Philadelphia. It was also the beginning of the franchise’s history that have included many memorable moments and others fans could forget about already. Some players drafted in 2010 didn’t last long with the Union, but Okugo and McInerney were fan favorites throughout their time in Philadelphia.

Just like in 2010 Philadelphia hosted the 2014 SuperDraft and will be doing so again in 2015.

What do you think of the Union’s 2010 MLS SuperDraft moves? What is your favorite soccer memory? Comment below and let us know. They may be featured in future Throwback Thursday columns.