Dilly Duka On Trading Block

Ned Dishman

The Crew confirmed that Duka's days in Black and Gold may be numbered.

Via Jardy, Brian Bliss confirmed the long suspected that Dilly Duka is on the trading block. An apparent rift has been growing between Duka and members of the club. The club had earlier they were looking into what role that the New Jersey native would play for the team.

Duka suffered through an injury shortened 2012 season as he struggled to overcome an injury suffered in offseason action with the MLS Generation Adidas and U.S. U-23 teams. The injury prevented him from playing a role in the U-23's attempt to qualify for the London Olympics. He reinjured his ankle in the season opener and wasn't fully healthy until May.

The problem between team and player became apparent in September against Chivas USA when Duka bypassed the bench and went directly to the locker room after being subbed in the 58th minute. He missed the game against Chicago the following week with the team giving him leave for personal reasons. Duka would make just two sub appearances in the final four games of the year, playing only 32 minutes.

Duka is one of several players on the team who have clashed with the team recently. Cole Grossman noted on his Facebook page about a couple members of the staff that was ruining a great organization. Recently waived defender Nemanja Vukovich was confused with the expectations to get back in the team in comments to the media.

Free agents Sebastian Miranda and Emilio Renteria have declined offers from the Columbus Crew to return to the team, seeking offers at home instead. Miranda wasn't complimentary of the team's offer in a recent comment in Chilean media.

This may be a case where change of scenery for the player is best. Duka has struggled with his role at left midfield and hasn't shown himself to be a strong enough defender to play central midfield.

Duka has played at attacking midfield during stretches with the U.S. youth national teams and results have been generally positive. The coaching staff declined to play Duka at attacking mid in the past few years as he fell down the depth chart behind Milovan Mirosevic and now Federico Higuian at that spot.

With the team actively shopping him, they are likely looking for a player who can be a starter in one of the outside back spots of at his left midfield spot, but his high salary will likely scare off at least a few trade partners.

With camp opening next week, the Crew are likely going to be bringing Duka into camp and if a trade doesn't happen, both parties are going to have to figure out a way to get past this.

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