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Matt Pickens
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Personal information
Full name Matt Pickens
Date of birth April 5, 1982 (1982-04-05) (age 27)
Place of birth Washington, Missouri, United States
Height 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Playing position Goalkeeper
Club information
Current club Colorado Rapids
Number 18
Youth career
2000–2003 Missouri State Bears
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2000–2003 Chicago Fire Premier
2004–2008 Chicago Fire 40 (0)
2004 Virginia Beach Mariners (loan) 3 (0)
2008 Queens Park Rangers 0 (0)
2009– Colorado Rapids 19 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 30 October 2009.
† Appearances (Goals).

Matt Pickens (born April 5, 1982 in Washington, Missouri) is an American soccer player who currently plays for Colorado Rapids in Major League Soccer.




Youth and Amateur

Pickens initially attended Meramec Community College before playing college soccer for Southwest Missouri State University from 2000 to 2003. He also played for Chicago Fire Premier in the USL Premier Development League.


Upon graduating, Pickens was drafted 19th overall in the 2004 MLS SuperDraft by the Fire. He was not able, however, to break through a deep lineup of Fire goalkeepers, which initially included Henry Ring and D.J. Countess, and later Zach Thornton. He was loaned out for much of the year to the A-League Virginia Beach Mariners, where he played 290 minutes, conceding only 3 goals.

During the latter half of 2006, after an injury to Zach Thornton, Pickens started in goal for the Fire even though Thornton is match fit again. This also includes his first play-off start on October 22, 2006 for the Fire, keeping a clean sheet in a game that the Fire won, 1-0 thanks to a goal from Justin Mapp in the 35th minute. Zach Thornton was traded to the Colorado Rapids on March 2, 2007; Pickens has been the Chicago Fire's first choice goalkeeper for the 2007 season. Matt has become a fan favorite and has been nicknamed "Slim Pickens" by the Section 8 supporters group.

On 17 January 2008 it was announced that Pickens was on trial at English Championship side Norwich City. However, Norwich were unable to offer him a first-team place. Interest from other British clubs continued with a short spell training at Preston North End. By the end of January reports circulated that he may join Queens Park Rangers[1].

On 7 February 2008, Pickens signed a deal with QPR until the end of the 2008 season[2]. On 6 May 2008, it was announced that Pickens would not have his contact extended and that he will be released by the club at the end of June.

Pickens trialled with numerous clubs in England and Scotland after his release, including Hibernian, Doncaster Rovers, Falkirk and Nottingham Forest, the latter of which he claims he was close to signing with[3]. However, despite not securing a new contract in Europe, Chicago Fire traded Pickens rights to Colorado Rapids on January 15, 2009[4] and was signed by the club shortly after.

See also


External links


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