The Philadelphia Union placed goalkeeper Brad Knighton on waivers, ending all connection to its goalkeeping corps from its inaugural season.
Knighton took over the starting role for the last eight games of the 2010 MLS season, after head coach Piotr Nowak became frustrated with the play of then starter Chris Seitz (now with FC Dallas). The 25-year-old net minder recorded the Union’s first ever clean sheet and let in eight goals with 23 saves over the eight games he played and started.
The former UNC-Wilmington star went undrafted in 2006 won a spot on the New England Revolution after impressing in Bermuda in 2007. After spending most of his time with the Revolution in either the Reserve League or with the Portland Timbers on loan, Knighton was taken by the Union in the 2009 MLS Expansion Draft.
Attractive to other teams after his 2010 displays and his relatively cheap contract ($40,000 against the cap in 2010), Knighton was thought of as a back up to Mondragon while MacMath developed in the newly reestablished Reserve League. At worst it was speculated by some that Knighton would be used as trade bait. Instead the Union chose to cut ties with him.
He most likely became expendable when the Union selected University of Maryland star goalkeeper Zac MacMath with the fifth overall pick in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft and with the signing of Colombian national team starting goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon. Current trialist Thorne Holder has played well so far into the Union’s young preseason, which may have helped along the move.