Photo by Don Feria/ISIphotos.com
By FRANCO PANIZO
The Los Angeles Galaxy are indeed in the process of lining up a move for a U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder, but it is not the player that is widely expected to be making a move to MLS.
The Galaxy are currently working to acquire veteran Sacha Kljestan from RSC Anderlecht via a loan, a source within MLS has confirmed to SBI. Kljestan would be subject to the MLS Allocation Order, which helps explain why the Galaxy executed a trade on Tuesday that saw them send young centerback Kofi Opare and a 2015 second round MLS SuperDraft Pick to D.C. United in exchange for a swap of allocation order positions that now has the Galaxy third in line behind the Columbus Crew and FC Dallas.
One of the teams in front of the Galaxy is said to be interested in Kljestan, but is unable to pay the loan fee that Anderlecht requires.
Under contract with Anderlecht through the 2015-16 season, Kljestan is expected to initially join Bruce Arena’s side via a six-month loan through the end of the season. Kljestan would be on Designated Player-type money, so him staying beyond the initial loan spell would require the Galaxy to free up a DP roster slot or MLS to raise the amount of DP spaces clubs can have. By arriving in MLS in mid-season, his salary could be pro-rated so that he would not count as a DP this season.
If the move is finalized, it would mark the MLS return of the 28-year-old midfielder. Kljestan, a Huntington Beach, California native, played for Chivas USA from 2006 to 2010 before moving to Belgian powerhouse Anderlecht.
A U.S. international with 46 caps and four goals to his name, Kljestan has fallen out of favor at Anderlecht despite helping the club win the last three Pro League titles. He was seldom used during the stretch run last season, which some believe played a part in him missing out on the U.S. team’s preliminary World Cup roster, and was limited to just seven minutes off the bench in Anderlecht’s season opener this past weekend.
Jermaine Jones is the U.S. midfielder most observers have been expecting to make a move to one of the two MLS clubs based in Los Angeles, where he has a home and has been spending his offseason. It is Kljestan, however, that the Galaxy have set their sights on.
What do you make of the Galaxy lining up a move for Kljestan? See it as a good move for him? Should he stick it out with Anderlecht?
Share your thoughts below.