MLS Ticker: Timbers sign Guzman, Sporting KC targets, and more

MLS Ticker: Timbers sign Guzman, Sporting KC targets, and more

Major League Soccer

MLS Ticker: Timbers sign Guzman, Sporting KC targets, and more

Photo by Troy Wayrynen/USA TODAY Sports

Photo by Troy Wayrynen/USA TODAY Sports

Yet another Costa Rican will be playing in MLS in 2017.

The Portland Timbers announced on Thursday the transfer of Costa Rican defensive midfielder David Guzman from Saprissa.

The 26-year-old Guzman started 164 games for the Costa Rican giants since he made his debut as a 19-year-old. He is a product of their renowned academy and has earned 25 caps for Costa Rica since 2011.

“Guzmán is a true No. 6 and will be a good fit on both sides of the ball,” said Timbers head coach Caleb Porter. “He is a technical, possession-type player and is smart positionally to help connect our midfield and back line defensively. David is also hungry to win more trophies and we feel his edge will complement the other players in our squad.”

Guzman made 23 league appearances for Saprissa this past season and started in four matches in the group stage of the CONCACAF Champions League, two of which were against the Timbers.

Sporting KC in negotiations with 3 players

Sporting Kansas City is in negotiations with three players, including one of the team’s former defenders.

According to the Kansas City Star, the club is in talks with Igor Juliao, who played for Sporting KC in 2014. Wingers Gerso Fernandes and Latif Blessing are the other two names.

Juliao, 22, was on loan with Sporting but was sent back to Fluminense, who have owned his rights for the past two years. He is a right back, which indicates that Chance Myers is unlikely to return to the club.

Fernandes, a 25-year-old winger who most recently played for Belenenses in Portugal, is well-known for his pace. Blessing is also a wide player and is still just 19 years old. He was reportedly included in Ghana’s 30-man provisional squad for the African Cup of Nations.

FC Dallas signs yet another homegrown player

FC Dallas has signed a record 18th homegrown player.

Eighteen-year-old defender Reggie Cannon signed an MLS contract with Dallas on Thursday. Cannon was a member of the club’s academy before joining the UCLA Bruins this past year.

Cannon won back-to-back national championships with the FC Dallas academy and started all 20 games in 2016 for UCLA.

Dallas now boasts 10 homegrowns on its roster, including Victor Ulloa and Kellyn Acosta.

Matt Van Oekel says he is joining Real Salt Lake

Real Salt Lake lost Jeff Attinella to the MLS Expansion Draft, but it seems like a replacement has been found.

Former Minnesota United and FC Edmonton goalkeeper Matt Van Oekel announced on Twitter that he is joining RSL for the 2017 season.

Van Oekel, 30, has been a standout for Edmonton and one of the NASL’s top goalkeepers. He posted 16 clean sheets in 29 games for the Eddies during the 2016 season.

New England Revolution re-sign Daigo Kobayashi

Daigo Kobayashi will be staying in New England.

The club announced that it re-signed the Japanese midfielder through to the end of the 2017 season after he opted out of the Re-Entry draft.

Kobayashi, 33, will be entering his fourth season with the Revs. He has made 82 appearances for New England since he joined from the Vancouver Whitecaps in 2014.

J.J. Koval, Steve Neumann announce retirements

Two of the top-10 picks from the 2014 MLS SuperDraft are calling it quits.

Sacramento Republic midfielder and former San Jose Earthquakes player J.J. Koval tweeted that he’s retiring from professional soccer to pursue a dentistry career.

Fellow 2014 pick Steve Neumann is also retiring after just three seasons with the New England Revolution.

Neumann, 25, was chosen fourth overall in 2014 by the Revolution. He made 23 appearances in the regular season in his rookie campaign. However, knee injuries have taken their toll on the Revs midfielder as he’s only played in 13 games over the last two years.

Koval, who was selected ninth overall by the Earthquakes in 2014, played in 39 regular-season matches for San Jose before the Republic signed the 24-year-old earlier this year.

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