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Vancouver Whitecaps trialist Vagenas almost joined Japanese club

Former Seattle Sounders midfielder Peter Vagenas was apparently close to joining a club in Japan during the MLS off-season.

The 33-year old was traded from the Sounders to Colorado Rapids late last season before becoming a free agent. He put himself into the 2010 MLS Re-entry Draft but was unsuccessful in his pursuits.

This forced him to look elsewhere for a contract and his old coach, Sounders' Sigi Schmid, said he would have joined J-League outfit Shimizu S-Pulse if it wasn't for the tragic Japanese earthquake.

"Yeah, he obviously had a good connection there because of Afshin Ghotbi - who is somebody that was Pete's youth club coach and he's worked in Korea and he was the national coach of Iran," Schmid said.

"Afshin got a job in Japan and was going to bring Pete over into that team. Then obviously with the earthquake and tsunami that ended up changing those plans."

But Vagenas is now on trial with expansion franchise Vancouver Whitecaps - a move which Schmid says is very positive.

"It's great for Pete. I know he's been looking for a team and looking for an opportunity," he added.

"As I've said to Pete, I've always felt he's a good player and a solid player, it's the injuries that have sort of gotten in the way of his ability to get on the field and show what we can do."

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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