Sacramento Republic FC fans shouldn’t expect to see either midfielder Daniel Trickett-Smith or defender Julius James around Papa Muphy’s Park any time soon. ICS learned recently that both players had been sent home by the club.
The departure of DTS and Jones comes on the heels of Harrison Heath being called back from his loan by Atlanta United after just three appearances.
We spoke with Republic Head Coach and Technical Director Paul Buckle to get his reasoning behind the decision to let the players go. First up was the more surprising move of the two: DTS.
“I just didn’t think that it was working out, Buckle said. “And if I feel that two thirds through the season, I have to convey that to a player. It’s important... I thought it was right to let Daniel move on.”
When Trickett-Smith was first signed by Republic in 2016, he was highly touted as a player with potential. Buckle said that although Trickett-Smith does still show that potential, it alone was not enough to keep him around.
“Well you’re judged on performances,” he said. “Daniel got a good run with the team... he comes with a fantastic pedigree and he’s been given opportunities. But in terms of goals and goals created, it wasn’t enough for me. I made the decision to be fair to him... in England the seasons are just starting now, so I wanted to be fair to him.”
In his two seasons with Republic, Trickett-Smith appeared in 21 games and contributed two goals and one assist in USL play.
Buckle did mention that this might not be the last we see of DTS at Papa Murphy’s Park. “The door’s still open for Daniel Trickett-Smith,” he said. “If he goes to another club and does well, there’s a pathway back here for him. I’ll be watching out for him, but at this moment in time I don’t think we were the right club for him.”
It is a similar story in the case of Julius James. James was signed by Republic fairly late in the preseason when the team was short on options at center back. He brought a veteran presence to a Republic defense that had yet to add Chris Christian and still had Emrah Klimenta at right back.
However, as the season went on and the defense solidified, James found himself getting fewer minutes on the field.
“Again, it was game time with Julius,” Buckle explained. “If you’re at the stage of your career like Julius, you should be playing. Julius wants to play... I didn’t see him getting in front of Emrah [Klimenta], Chris Christian, or Carlos Rodriguez. So again, it’s just a fair thing for me to do with a third of the season to go to let Julius move on.”
The departure of DTS and James further depletes a roster already hit by some significant injuries to Danny Barrera and Adam Moffat. In order to help bolster the roster, Buckle has been looking to bring in some additional help.
Republic’s new signing Hayden Partain, a midfielder announced prior to Saturday’s game, is the first of those reinforcements. “He’s going to make me sleep easier,” Buckle said of Partain after his half hour appearance in Saturday’s match. “He’s doing what I like in a midfielder. He sees the pass early, plays quickly... I’m very very pleased.”
Partain first came to Republic on trial highly recommended from his Des Moines Menace Head Coach, John Pascarella.
Buckle also said that he is looking to bring in another player to help bolster the roster. One possibility is UC Davis alumnus and former Burlingame Dragons forward, Matt Wiesenfarth. Wiesenfarth has been training with Republic recently and Buckle mentioned that he would like to add him.
Hopefully DTS and James both land on their feet somewhere new and benefit from a fresh start. In the meantime, things look pretty exciting for Republic with the addition of Partain.
What are your thoughts on Republic’s recent roster moves? Sound off in the comments below!
Editor’s note: The original text of the article stated that the players have been released, meaning that the team cancelled the contracts. In actuality the players are still under contract but have just been sent home and are no longer with the club. ICS has also learned that Enrique Montano has been sent home.