With a preseason injury to Ilsinho, it looked like the Philadephia Union would open the season with a combonation of the unproven duo of Adam Najem and Anthony Fontana. While it would be good that the team would be playing their kids, it wouldn't bode well for a team that needs to win now following their investment in David Accam earlier this offseason.
Luckily reports are showing that the Philadelphia Union are in negotiations with an attacking midfielder/right winger, Borek Dockal. The Czech international is currently playing for Henan Jianye in the Chinese Super League following stops with AC Sparta Praha, Rosenborg BK, FC Slovan Liberec and Atiker Konyaspor during his career. Dockal has Europa League experience which could make this a very interesting get for the Philadelphia Union. His agency broke the news that he is traveling to the states for contract negotiations.
Bořek Dočkal odletěl společně se zástupci @SPORT_INVEST do Ameriky jednat o možném angažmá s týmem Philadelphia Union. Hráče ještě čeká lékařská prohlídka i jednání o finální podobě případného kontraktu. pic.twitter.com/hPaeIxNXFi— SPORT INVEST (@SPORT_INVEST) February 20, 2018
The rough translation of this is that Dokal is coming to the states for a medical and to finalize a contract. While news broken by an agency should usually be taken with a grain of salt, this is a rumor that seems to have legs to match. Johnathan Tannenwald backs up the rumors that this is the guy the Philadelphia Union have been eying up.
Czech Republic midfielder Borek Dockal is in Philadelphia to negotiate a move to the Union. Medical examinations to come and the contract isn’t signed yet, but a well-placed source tells the Inquirer and Daily News that Dockal is the Union’s big playmaker target. https://t.co/4nnXl9Qvhi— Jonathan Tannenwald (@thegoalkeeper) February 20, 2018
It's unknown if the move is a loan with an option to buy or a straight buy at the moment but it is interesting that Dockal shares an agent with new Flyers goalkeeper Petr Mrazek keeping it all in the family.
What's interesting is that Dockal has made most of his appearances on the right wing but that could lead to the team being more dynamic in attack. They have been known to switch formations in attack and defense so this move would allow David Accam to play alongside CJ Sapong up top while Dockal showcases his excellent passing skills and vision from the wing.
At times last season the formation would alternate between a 4-1-4-1 and the standard 4-2-3-1 and something along those lines could easily happen again as formations become more fluid through the years. Dockal netted four goals while collecting five assists during 23 appearances for Henan Jianye which doesn't blow your socks off but looking deeper he averaged 2.4 key passes per game while playing in central midfield.
These numbers could easily go up considering the firepower that he will have around him with the Union. Dockal was also briefly teammates with Fafa Picault during his time at AC Sparta Praha. By the end of this week, the search for a number 10 could be over, just in time to gear up for the season opener versus the Revolution on March third.