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Veteran Oguchi Onyewu trains with Philadelphia Union

Two-time U.S. World Cup team member Oguchi Onyewu is training with the Philadelphia Union.

Philadelphia is looking for defensive help after allowing 55 goals in 2016, second-most among the 12 teams that qualified for the MLS Cup playoffs, and the 34-year-old Onyewu is currently out-of-contract.

But Union sporting director Earnie Stewart said that the veteran isn't officially on trial with the club.

"He's here as a player who wants to keep up his level of fitness and make sure he can be ready for any moment that anybody steps in," Stewart told reporters on Tuesday. "We felt we had to oblige. It's great for the young players around him to see his experience."

Onyewu has spent his entire 15-year professional career in Europe, first signing with French club Metz out of Clemson University in 2001.

He's also played for top-flight squads in Belgium, England, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain. Onyewu's last team was Charlton in England's second-tier.

He failed to secure a contract with either New York City FC or Scottish giant Rangers after trialing with both in 2016.

Stewart wouldn't rule out inking the 6-foot-4 center-back, who won 69 U.S. caps and played in the 2006 and 2010 World Cups.

"I would say never say never because that's the way soccer is, and we are looking for an experienced center-back," Stewart said. "It's pretty easy [to say] that he fits that mold, but at the same time, it needs to be possible and needs to fit."

One American who is on trial with the Union is Fabrice "Fafa" Picault. The 25-year-old, New York City-born forward most recently played for German 2. Bundesliga side St. Pauli. Picault earned his lone U.S. cap last May in a friendly win against Puerto Rico.

Doug McIntyre is a staff writer for ESPN The Magazine and ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @DougMacESPN.


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