Matt Pickens, Tampa Bay Rowdies


Matt Pickens, Colorado Rapids (Missouri State 2003) by Garrett Ellwood/Getty Images

Current Club: Tampa Bay Rowdies
College: Missouri State Bears
High School: St. Francis Borgia High School

Height: 6′ 3″
Weight: 200 lbs.
Birth Date: 04-05-1982
Birthplace: Washington, MO

2011 – Participated in his fourth straight January training camp.
2010 – Called in for January camp in Carson, California.
2009 – Participated in second consecutive January training camp.
2008 – Invited by U.S. MNT Head Coach Bob Bradley to participate in his first National Team training camp during January. Participated in training camp with the National team in November 2008 at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.

2014 March 26 – Tampa Bay Rowdies Acquire Matt Pickens
The NASL’s Tampa Bay Rowdies announced they have acquired the rights to accomplished MLS goalkeeper Matt Pickens from Major League’s Soccer’s New England Revolution, and has signed the keeper to a multi-year contract.

2014 March 26 – Picken’s deal is good for everybody
The reason it ended up aiding Colorado is that the Rapids will now receive the full salary cap relief for what was owed to Matt Pickens in 2014, which will allow the club more flexibility with the roster.

“We knew that Tampa Bay was interested in Matt, and if he had gone directly from the Rapids to the Rowdies, or even stayed with New England, we would’ve only received partial salary cap relief,” said Bravo. “Once the transfer was completed to Tampa Bay, that meant that we would save the full amount.”

2014 March 20 – Pickens waived by the Rapids
Pickens, 32, came to the Rapids in 2009 and played 116 matches for the club (all starts), holding franchise records in career games played (among goalkeepers), shutouts, and wins. He started two matches in 2013 before suffering a broken arm, missing the bulk of the season and backing up Clint Irwin after his return from injury. In his MLS career with Colorado and Chicago, Pickens has played 156 games (154 starts), keeping 40 shutouts.

2014 March 19 – Pickens still in limbo, may return to MLS
2014 February 15 – Matt Pickens in Norway

Colorado Rapids goalkeeper Matt Pickens is currently training at Norwegian club Stabaek, the club that recently appointed former U.S. National Team head coach Bob Bradley as their manager. Pickens, who has been an excused absence from Colorado’s preseason so far, is in Norway with the Rapids permission as he looks for a new opportunity in 2014.

Traded to Colorado from Chicago on January 15, 2009 along with the 28th pick in the 2009 MLS SuperDraft for allocation money and the 20th pick in the 2009 MLS SuperDraft.

Re-signed to a multi-year contract extension on July 25.
Received Colorado Rapids MVP and Fan Favorite award.
Broke the Rapids all-time streak of 75 consecutive regular season starts before suffering a season ending groin injury against the San Jose Earthquake on Oct. 6.
Set the club mark for career shutouts and wins, earning his 29th shutout for the Rapids (passing Joe Cannon with 25 earlier in the season) and earning his 41st career win (passing Hahnemann with 40) on Sept. 5 against the Portland Timbers.

Played every minute of all 34 games of the 2011 season in goal, a career high, and earned a record of 12-9-13 and 77 saves.
Recorded eight shutouts in the 2011 season. Pickens is second in all-time shutouts for the Rapids with 22, behind Joe Cannon with 25
Playoffs: Started all three playoff games and notched his fifth career playoff shutout against Columbus Crew (10/27).

Started 29 games with a record of 11-8-10 with 88 saves and seven shutouts.
Playoffs: Started all four playoff games and posted shutouts in first leg of Eastern Conference Semifinal vs. Columbus (10/28) and in Conference Final vs. San Jose (11/13).

Started 19 games in goal and had a record of 9-6-4 with 39 saves and a 1.16 goals against average.
Made his Rapids debut starting in the season opener at Chivas USA (3/21).

Recorded career-highs in games played (27), games started (27), minutes (2,430), saves (102), GAA (1.15) and shutouts (10).
Played in all but three of Chicago’s games.

Started all eight league appearances, going 5-3-0 and collecting a 1.38 GAA during the last quarter of the Fire’s regular season.
Finished first in MLS with 82.5 save percentage and 3rd with a .625 winning percentage.
Earned MLS Player of the Month honor in September after going 4-2-0 with a 0.83 GAA and 89.5 save percentage.
Earned his first career MLS shutout vs. D.C. United (9/17).
Started all four Fire games in USOC play, recording a 4-0-0 record and 0.50 GAA (2 GA) in helping the Fire to the title.

Finished the season with a 2-2-1 record and 1.20 GAA in five appearances, three starts.
Earned first career MLS win on 4/16 vs. San Jose (4/16) in his first career MLS start.

Selected by the Fire in the second round of the 2004 MLS SuperDraft (19th overall), making him the first former member of the Chicago Fire Premier (formerly Fire Reserves) PDL club to be drafted by the Fire senior team.
Did not see any game action with the Fire during the season.
Sent on loan to the A-League’s Virginia Beach Mariners, where he allowed only 0.93 goals against in three starts despite registering a 0-2-1 record.

· Finished his collegiate career at Missouri State (then Southwest Missouri State) second on the all-time chart in goals against average (1.25) and fifth in saves (191).
· Earned First-team All-Midwest Region, First-team All-MVC, All-MVC Tournament team, First-team All-MVC Academic and First-team NSCAA All-America Scholar Athlete honors.
· During his first year at SWMS, earned Second-team All-MVC and All-Midwest Region honors, as well as a spot on the Valley’s All-Newcomer team.
· In 2000, posted 12 shutouts and a 0.59 goals-against average over 22 games for St. Louis Community College at Meramec.

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