A crowded field will vie to replace the Union's leading scorer

Posted: February 09, 2012

The biggest question facing the Union as they prepare for their third Major League Soccer season will be how to replace leading scorer Sebastien Le Toux. But at least there won't be a shortage of candidates.

The team added to the pool by signing Colombian first-division forward Lionard Pajoy on Wednesday.

Terms were not disclosed for the 30-year-old Pajoy, who led Itagüí Ditaires in scoring with 13 goals while adding three assists in 27 starts. During Colombia's Clausura, held in the second half of the calendar year, Pajoy had 10 goals in 18 starts.

Besides the 6-foot-1 Pajoy, others vying for time up top include Danny Mwanga, Jack McInerney, first-round draft choice Chandler Hoffman of UCLA, and newcomer Josué Martinez. In addition, Freddy Adu could play either in the midfield or move up to forward.

"The more the better," team manager Peter Nowak said during a conference call from Florida, where the team is training.

Nowak mentioned a team cannot have enough depth, especially with teams losing players to international competition, including this summer's Olympics.

Pajoy should provide plenty of competition.

"He is very physical and fast as well and can change the game with everything he does," Nowak said.

Nowak said the Union were still sorting out their backup goalkeeper position behind Zac MacMath.

Besides Chase Harrison, Nowak said the team had brought keeper Chris Konopka into camp. Last season Konopka played in a friendly for the Columbus Crew and one MLS game for the New York Red Bulls.

"He has looked good, and at the end of camp we will have to make a decision," Nowak said of the 26-year-old Konopka, who is a graduate of Toms River East High School.

After the current training session in Florida, the Union will train in Costa Rica.

Contact staff writer Marc Narducci at mnarducci@phillynews.com, 856-779-3225 or @sjnard on Twitter.

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