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Matthaeus already is making plans to play after MetroStars stay.

By Robert Wagman
SoccerTimes

(Sunday, March 5, 2000) -- Defender Lothar Matthaeus has not yet even joined the MetroStars and he’s already planning what he should do after he leaves Major League Soccer’s New York-area franchise.

After he played his last regular Bundesliga match for Bayern Munich this weekend, he noted that while he is looking forward to his "adventure" in America, next year he very well may move on and finish his playing days in Dubai.

He told reporters that before he signed his $1 million, one-year deal with MLS, he received a "much more lucrative" offer to play in the professional league and help coach the national team in the Gulf state Dubai.

"Maybe I will stay longer in the United States, maybe I will do something totally different," told the German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung. "Maybe Dubai. I have received a very interesting offer and former TSV 1860 Munich player Abedi Pele plays there."

In other MetroStars news, the club acquired prominent Colombian striker Adolfo Valencia. "El Tren (The Train)," as he is affectionately known, is slotted for the spot of departed Sasa Curcic's spot on the team roster.

"In our continuing efforts to rebuild the team, we feel the addition of Valencia will help fill a very important need with our offense this upcoming season," said MetroStars president and general manager Nick Sakiewicz. "He will team up with fellow Colombian Alex Comas, and give us a very strong one-two punch up front."

Valencia, 31, played last in Greece for Paok Salonica. He has played for Independiente of Santa Fe (Colombia), Independiente Medellin (Colombia), Reggiana (Italy), Atletico Madrid (Spain), and Bayern Munich. With Bayern in 1994, he scored 11 goals in 25 matches when the club won its domestic title.

Valencia has played for Colombia in the last two World Cups scoring the lone goal in losses to the United States (2-1) and Romania (3-1) at USA '94. He played in Colombia's three games at France '98, playing all 90 minutes in a 1-0 win over Tunisia, and coming off the bench at the start of the second half against England and Romania. In 60 international appearances, he has approximately 31 goals.

"I am excited at the opportunity to be joining the MetroStars in Major League Soccer," said Valencia, a 6-foot, 170-pounder who has scored more than 105 goals in his Colombian league career. "There is much work to do to turn around the MetroStars, and I look forward to playing a major part in their future success."


Agogo keeps it going

BRADENTON, Fla. -- The Chicago Fire received two goals from newcomer Junior Agogo to defeat the Tampa Bay Mutiny 3-1 earlier today in an exhibition game.

Agogo, who scored in the first and 18th minutes, has three goals and two assists for the Fire, which is now 4-1-1 in the preseason.

Fire forward Josh Wolff returned to game action for the first time since tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee on September 21, 1999. He played the second half.


Wizards romp in Bolivia

SANTA CRUZ, Bolivia -- Forward Miklos Molnar netted his sixth and seven goals of the preseason, while forward Alex Bunbury had a goal and two assists, midfielder Chris Klein tallied three assists, and midfielders Chris Henderson and Preki each added a goal for the Kansas City Wizards who cruised to a 5-0 triumph over Oriente Petrolero of Bolivia’s first division.

Senior correspondent Robert Wagman can be e-mailed at SoccerWag1@aol.com.

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