Kazemaini to sign with Blast

January 03, 1992|By Sandra McKee

The Blast and midfielder Ali Kazemaini are expected to work out an agreement today that will see him play here tomorrow night against the St. Louis Storm.

"I think we have to work out something," said Blast coach Kenny Cooper, who was going to watch Kazemaini practice this morning before making his final decision on whether the team would offer a 15-day contract or sign him for the rest of the season.

"We can't afford to make any mistakes about this," Cooper said. "I think Ali will give us some options. It's not like he has to show people anything. He's a proven player. But he'll be pushed harder here than he's been pushed anywhere else. He has the talent, and it's my job to bring it out."

Kazemaini arrived in town Monday night for a tryout. The Blast needs a midfielder because of the loss of Mike Stankovic, who suffered a season-ending knee injury.

Kazemaini, 28, looks fit. Cooper said he is pleasantly surprised by Kazemaini's conditioning. "He's thinner than I've ever seen him," said Cooper.

"I'm lighter than I've ever been," said Kazemaini, who is 6 feet and about 180 pounds.

"When the Blast called, I got excited," he said. "This is the only team I'd consider coming back for this season. I need someone to push me, and I know Kenny will demand from me everything I have the capability to give. And I'm willing to give it."

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