Jamar Beasley last played Major League Soccer nearly a decade ago.
While he was gone, he was not forgotten.
Beasley, 30, a Fort Wayne native and older brother of DaMarcus Beasley, was expected to sign a contract today to return to the MLS with the Kansas City Wizards.
“This is really something big for me and my family,” Beasley said Thursday. “It's just a great time, with my brother hopefully going to the World Cup, as well.”
Beasley was the first player to play in the MLS directly out of high school, and he played for the New England Revolution and the Chicago Fire from 1998 to 2001.
After that, he played in lower-division outdoor leagues and has played professional indoor soccer the last six years. Beasley said he received a call from Kansas City earlier this spring inviting him in for a tryout after his indoor season ended with the Rockford (Ill.) Rampage of Major Indoor Soccer League.
Jamar trained for a while with DaMarcus in Scotland after his indoor season, and then returned to Fort Wayne. He went to Kansas City on Monday to work out, and the team evaluated him through Thursday and offered him a contract. Beasley played for Kansas City assistant coach Zoran Savic with the indoor Kansas City Comets.
“The chance to train with my brother really helped me out, too,” Beasley said. “My mom and dad and my fiancee, Sheenah Johnson, were very influential in the decision (to pursue the MLS opportunity), too. They were keys to getting me back to MSL.”
Beasley also thanked the Fort Wayne Fever's Bobby Poursanidis for his help in getting ready for the Kansas City tryout.
The Beasley brothers regularly conduct camps with the Fever's coaching staff. “Bobby has been part of my life since I was 11 or 12,” Jamar said. “He really helped me with a two-week regimen they gave me before I came to Kansas City. I worked with him mornings and afternoons and he was a big help.”
Beasley said he is not sure when he will begin playing for the Wizards. The team has a game Saturday, but he doesn't expect to play in that game.
“I'm still working hard, still getting fitter and training hard with the team,” Beasley said. “I still have a little ways to go. They want to make sure that when they put me on the field, I'm 100 percent ready.”