Photo by Michael Janosz/ISIphotos.com
By FRANCO PANIZO
Kofi Opare is heading to the East Coast.
It was announced on Tuesday that the LA Galaxy have traded Opare and their second round 2015 MLS SuperDraft selection to D.C. United, who have swapped places in the allocation order with Bruce Arena’s side as part of the deal.
Opare, 23, was drafted by the Galaxy in the second round of the 2013 MLS SuperDraft. The centerback went on to make 11 starts in his time in LA and scored one goal.
“We are pleased to have acquired a smart, young defender in Kofi who has a very big upside, as well as securing a 2015 second round Superdraft pick,” said D.C. United general manager Dave Kasper in a statement. “This is an important move for us to make at this time to add depth to our squad as we enter the second half of the MLS season and the CONCACAF Champion’s League group stage. We welcome Kofi to the D.C. United family.”
The trade would seem to hint that the Galaxy are closing in on acquiring a player through the allocation process, but there is no word yet as to who it could be.
Here are more notes from around MLS:
NYCFC LAND JACOBSON IN TRADE WITH FC DALLAS
Frank Lampard may have been the first midfielder to sign with New York City FC, but he is not the only one anymore.
NYC FC announced on Tuesday that they have acquired veteran Andrew Jacobson after trading their highest pick in the third round of the 2016 MLS SuperDraft to FC Dallas.
The 28-year-old Jacobson will go on loan to Norwegian club Stabaek IF, where American Bob Bradley is the head coach, until NYC FC’s preseason begins in January 2015.
“I am incredibly excited to be part of New York City FC’s historic first squad and cannot wait to give my all for this team and its fans.” said Jacobson in a statement. “I have respected coach (Jason) Kreis’ teams since I first came into the league and I am greatly looking forward to working with him. I know that he always builds teams that are competitive and play good soccer and I have no doubt he will be seeking to do the same with New York City FC from the very first season. The club has made some amazing signings so far and to be part of that list is a great feeling for me.”
“In addition, the opportunity to go on loan to Stabæk and work under coach Bradley is an experience that I will relish and use to improve my game until preseason training with NYCFC begins.”
Jacobson – who started in five of the 13 games he played in for the Hoops this season and has previously represented the Philadelphia Union and D.C. United – becomes the second midfielder and fifth player on New York City’s growing roster. He joins Lampard, David Villa, Jeb Brovsky and Josh Saunders as the first members of NYC FC ahead of their inaugural season in MLS next year.
“I’m delighted to sign a player of Andrew’s experience and quality as we continue to build our roster ahead of the 2015 season” said New York City FC head coach, Jason Kreis in the same statement. “He is a player my staff and I have liked for quite some time and we are thrilled to add such a versatile and competitive midfielder to our squad.
“Andrew has a wealth of experience in this league having previously played for three MLS clubs and I think that will be important to us. It is also fantastic to have brought in our second midfielder in the space of a week.”
MLS ANNOUNCES SPECIAL OLYMPICS ALL-STAR MATCH
MLS has added another game to its upcoming All-Star festivities, and it is one that is plenty noble.
MLS announced on Tuesday that the league’s community outreach initiative MLS Works, ESPN and Special Olympics are collaborating to host a Special Olympics Unified Sports All-Star soccer match between Special Olympics North America and Special Olympics Germany.
The match will take place at 2pm PT at Providence Park in Portland, Oregon on Aug. 5, a day after the inaugural MLS Homegrown Game and a day before the MLS All-Star Game. Admission is free and no ticker is required.
The two Unified Sports soccer teams will be comprised of players both with and without intellectual disabilities. The sides will play a seven-vs.-seven small-sided game that consists of two 20-minute halves.
NYCFC CLOSE TO ANNOUNCING LOCAL TV DEAL
New York City FC are making moves towards building a roster and also a fanbase.
NYC FC chief business officer Tim Pernetti recently told Bloomberg.com that the 2015 expansion club is preparing to announce a local TV broadcasting deal “relatively soon.” Pernetti offered no other details, but the YES Network that airs the games of MLB’s New York Yankees – which partially own NYC FC – is widely expected to be the television partner of the MLS team.
DYKSTRA OUT FOR THE SEASON
The type of goalkeeper controversy that D.C. United had earlier in the season will not be taking place again any time in the near future.
D.C. United announced on Monday that goalkeeper Andrew Dykstra is set to miss the remainder of the season after rupturing his left Achilles tendon. Dykstra sustained the injury this past Saturday in a 3-0 friendly loss vs. Championship club Fulham FC.
“Andrew has been an integral part of our team success so far this season, and we are very disappointed for him to sustain this injury,” said D.C. United general manager Dave Kasper. “We are very confident that Andrew will be back on the field next spring.”
The 28-year-old Dykstra made four starts this season, three of which came in consecutive games over first-choice goalkeeper Bill Hamid. Dykstra went 3-0-1 and posted two cleansheets in those games.
United have recalled goalkeeper Joe Willis from his loan to the Richmond Kickers in the wake of Dykstra’s season-ending injury.
Is it a mistake for the Galaxy to have shipped away Opare? Is Jacobson a good acquisition for NYC FC? Planning on attending the Special Olympics Unified Sports All-Star Soccer Match in Portland?
Share your thoughts below.
So DCU got a good cb for free, good for them Opare is a solid upgrade over Ethan White.
As for the Gals, i wonder who Don will allocate to them! Jones or Sasha would be my guess
So with the way the ‘new’ teams are getting players does that mean that they will be doing away with the expansion draft? I think it would only make sense.
trades, allocation orders, designates poopers. Please…just give us a real soccer league and get rid of all these gimmicks.
Agreed.. The usmnt allocation order and their sometimes rules needs to go asap. It didn’t even make sense in 1996 and it certainly doesn’t now.
What strikes me as odd is that the Galaxy have only jumped up in the allocation order. If it is for any of the guys mentioned in the comments, you would think they would need to be at the top of the allocation order one way or another. The Galaxy will probably have to give up even more to the Crew to get the guy they are targeting. Though, with DC’s allocation spot in the trade, they may not have to add to much to get the Crew’s spot.
Well, figure that Columbus and Dallas don’t want to pay the dp salary for a player who doesn’t want to be there. Couple million/year and third might as well be first.
Jones was hanging in the Galaxy’s main suite with Omar at the StubHub a couple weeks ago. We all speculated that the G’s and him were in discussions beyond just a welcome home from WC. Would be outstanding grit to add to the team.
I wonder if there is a chance that Jones comes in on less than DP money this year. Then, if they off load Omar next year, or Donovan retires, to open up a DP slot, they renegotiate Jones’ contract to make him a DP. If this is allowed, seems like good way to keep Jones in LA without having to play for the Goats / whatever they will be called next year because I can’t see anyone wanting to play for them.
I’ll but a small wager on the player the Gals are looking at being Gooch.
Why do you say that? I would think that an Omar + AJ pairing has them set at CB. Not saying you’re wrong, just curious to know why you think what you think.
If they bring in Gooch, that would probably mean getting rid of Gonzalez. They wouldn’t want to play those two together since neither is very fast. Then they’d be able to bring in another big name attacking DP.
so now the Fire are being linked with Jones. i think this all but confirms he is not going to be allocated.
“A Fire spokesperson declined to comment on the Jones report but did say, ‘The club does consider the allocation order as a viable method of acquiring players.’ “
well, as a DC fan this is fantastic because Opare is a great pick up. as an LA fan, i’m wondering who they could be going after. i didn’t think Jones would actually go through allocation because the guy is going to make at least $1M. Edu ended up only getting a contract worth $650,000 and i’m sure Beasley is right around that. Jones has a bigger market value and was set to make more than $2M on his last contract.
if it isn’t him, the next three players i could think of would be Gooch, Kljestan, and Mix. of those, it would make no sense for LA to trade Opare away to effectively get Onyewu who is older, expensive, and has knee issues.
as for Kljestan, i just don’t see the point to add him. but he is a legit possibility. for Mix, i think that makes the most sense.
“Pernetti offered no other details, but the YES Network that airs the games of MLB’s New York Yankees – which partially own NYC FC – is widely expected to be the television partner of the MLS team.”
Pretty much a no-brainer there. For the record, it also took less than a week after the initial announcement for YES to switch from showing nothing but Arsenal replays to showing nothing but Man City replays.
Correct-a-mundo. What LA got was the climb up the allocation order — presumably to add Jones. DCU get Opare and a party favor with the second-rounder.
I have read good stuff about Opare. I think he’s got the potential to earn a starting job in years to come. I wish DCU were in a position to add someone like Jones (or Edu, before him), but for now, this will have to do.
But Jones would need DP money, right? LA has 3 DP’s and also don’t DP’s escape the allocation process, or am I wrong about that?
Possible Indication that Gonzalez getting sold or?? . . . . .Also seen other thoughts that it could be Sasha K
DPs can absolutely be allocated. look at Edu and Beasley. DPs will not be allocated when they meet a “certain threshold – as determined by the League.”
at first it seemed that if MLS paid a fee in the transfer, they skip allocation. but it may be more of a salary threshold. or both. Jones will certainly make over $1M a year which is more than Edu and likely Beasley. so we’ll see.
I don’t think it is Omar because then they would need defenders like Opare which leads me to believe that it is somebody that would not necessarily require a DP slot because I can’t imagine Robbie or Landon being dealt away either. We shall see. I have confidence though because when was the last time the Galaxy made a bad trade??
This is hilarious.
agreed. unless Omar is getting sold, which seems even less likely with Opare gone, i’m not sure it’ll be a DP. which makes it even more curious who it’ll be.
i would think Gooch, Kljestan, and Mix would all be on DP money. i guess it’s possible they get someone on loan and the parent club pays enough to keep the salary under the DP minimum. but who knows, that’s me just speculating on possibilities.
If it is one of those 3 my guess is Kljestan because he would be at the point in his career that he could make an accommodation and the Galaxy could use a central midfielder because while Sarvas and Juninho are good there is not much behind therm. SK would knock MS to the bench and MS would fill in as needed as he did when Beckham was on the team. That’s my wild-ass guess.
it’s possible, but he makes $730,000 a year. i don’t see him taking a pay cut big enough to drop him out of the DP level.
just another example that the DP minimum is way too low for where MLS is at now.
I’m 95% certain it’s Jones.
Jones wants, badly, to come to MLS. He’s got a house in LA. I don’t think he wants to go to Chivas USA because nobody wants to go to Chivas – right now.
Normally you’d look at Jones’ salary requirements and say: no way. But the thing people forget is, the league’s collective bargaining agreement is up in January. At the very least, they’ll be jacking the cap up – way up, like probably $2 million or more up. They may also well add another DP slot.
The obvious deal to be struck would be: okay, we wedge you in under the cap now…for non-DP money, and in January, you go up – way up. An agent would be leery of this kind of thing…but Jones doesn’t have an agent, and he pretty much has always done what the heck he wants to do anyway.
By January, a lot of things will be different – very different. Not only will the Galaxy have a lot more money to spend, but Chivas USA will be “rebranded” and would have a lot more certainty about ownership, and at that point I suspect Chivas could very quickly become a hot destination for DP-type players as well.
Just a thought, but I suspect it’s how it’ll play out. LA really needs more steel, more athleticism, and more legs in the midfield if they’re planning on making a run at the MLS Cup and Jones would fit that perfectly…Mix and Klechstan, not so much.
An added 2m is highly speculative… Expect it to be 1m at most. Just because a few teams are turning profits doesn’t mean the whole league is. Some teams aren’t even hitting the cap now… it’s not because they don’t have the players who deserve the money, it’s because they can’t afford it.
just like you don’t raise the cap just because a few are hitting it, you don’t hold back the cap because not everyone is hitting it.
MLS and the owners will have to do an analysis on a reasonable increase, but raising the cap doesn’t make teams use it. it’s there for the teams that want to. a cap of just over $3M is pathetic and i think a raise to something like $5M is totally fair for where the league is at now and the players they are trying to sign. $5M, IMO, doesn’t price out certain owners and provides enough room to let more ambitious owners to operate in a way that fits them.
Increasingly looking like Jones has every intention of staying in LA. Came across this and it gives a very good idea of where Jones’ head is at….
That’s the way it sounds from Kaspar’s quotes, also.