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Revolution sign Osei and await delivery

By Monique Walker
Globe Staff / April 1, 2009
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FOXBOROUGH - Another addition to the Revolution roster is expected in the upcoming weeks, as the team announced the signing of central defender Emmanuel Osei yesterday.

Osei has been playing with Liberty Professionals in Ghana's top professional league. He is awaiting his international transfer certificate before joining the Revolution. Osei has played with ASV Cham (Germany), AS Livorno (Italy), FC Timisoara (Romania), and was a member of Ghana's 2004 Olympic team.

Revolution coach Steve Nicol describes the 26-year-old as a "hard-nosed defender" with the kind of experience that makes him ready to play right away. Osei, who is 5 feet 11 inches and 160 pounds, also has experience in the midfield.

Last week, the Revolution signed 19-year-old striker Stephane Assengue Ombiogno of Cameroon. Both African players are in the process of completing the necessary paperwork to play in the US.

The Revolution will have to make a roster move to accommodate both players. They are one above their 24-player cap, and all seven international slots are filled. One way to make the roster compliant would be to waive an international player, vice president of player personnel Mike Burns said.

The Revolution have time to address the issue because the moves do not have to be made until Osei and Assengue Ombiogno are ready to be added, Burns said. The Revolution hope both will be available by April 17, when New England faces D.C. United, but Burns cautioned, "There's no guarantees, no promises on that, but obviously, it's what we're striving for."

Revolution goalkeeper Matt Reis will be taking it easy this week after an MRI revealed he has a floating spur in his knee. Reis sat out last week's 1-1 tie vs. the New York Red Bulls with swelling and pain in his knee.

"It kind of popped up out of nowhere," Reis said. "I thought the worst until [Monday] when I got the MRI and the X-rays were negative. It's a good thing that hopefully all the swelling goes down and the particle or whatever it is in there moves out of the way the same as it came in."

In the injury report released yesterday, Reis is listed as "out" for Saturday's home opener against FC Dallas, as are Taylor Twellman (neck pain) and Gabriel Badilla (lower back sprain/Achilles' tendinitis). Chris Albright (ankle inflammation) and Mauricio Castro (hamstring strain) are listed as questionable. And Steve Ralston (quadriceps strain) and Sainey Nyassi (hamstring strain) are probable.

Ralston returned to full training yesterday and Twellman warmed up with the team and worked out for a little more than an hour.

Twellman said he is not putting himself on a time frame to return.

"I was kind of naive to think I would just heal from that punch and not have any residual effects," he said. "I tried to play through it, and I think that put me behind the 8-ball a little bit. But it is what it is. I'm just making sure [my body is] healthy."

Monique Walker can be reached at mwalker@globe.com.

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