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MLS Ticker: Earthquakes reportedly after Pulido, Picault heading to FC Dallas, and more

The San Jose Earthquakes are reportedly after Liga MX striker Alan Pulido.

According to TUDN, the Quakes are entering talks with Mexican side Guadalajara on a $10 million transfer for Pulido. Pulido and current Quakes head coach Matias Almeyda worked together during a successful 2018 season which saw Guadalajara win the Concacaf Champions League and a Liga MX-Copa MX double the previous year.

The 28-year-old won a share of the Liga MX scoring title in the Apertura regular season that finished over the weekend, scoring 12 goals in 18 league matches. In 97 combined appearances with Guadalajara, Pulido has scored 34 goals.

After starting his professional career with Tigres, Pulido has also played for Greek sides Levadiakos and Olympiakos. He’s earned 13 caps with the Mexican National Team, scoring five goals.

The San Jose Earthquakes missed out on the 2019 MLS Cup Playoffs in Almeyda’s first season at the helm.

Picault traded to FC Dallas

Fafa Picault is on his way to FC Dallas.

The Western Conference club announced Tuesday they’ve acquired Picault in a trade with the Philadelphia Union. In exchange, the Union will receive $300,000 in 2020 General Allocation Money and up to $75,000 in additional GAM in 2021.

Picault, 28, scored 21 goals and recorded 12 assists in three seasons for the Union. He scored his first career playoff goal against the New York Red Bulls in an eventual 4-3 Union win.

A winger who can play on either side of the field, Picault also spent time with St. Pauli, AC Sparta Prague, Fort Lauderdale Strikers, and the Tampa Bay Rowdies in his professional career.

He’s also earned two caps with the U.S. Men’s National Team, and now gives Luchi Gonzalez another experienced attacking option in 2020.

Report: D.C. United set to reacquire Hamid on permanent deal

D.C. United are reportedly set to re-acquire Bill Hamid on a permanent deal.

According to The Washington Post, Hamid will be acquired from Danish Superliga side Midtjylland this offseason for a transfer fee of roughly $750,000. The 29-year-old spent the last season and a half on-loan back at D.C. after a lack of playing with in Denmark.

Hamid, 29, has made 231 regular-season appearances and 10 MLS Cup Playoffs appearances in his career. Born in Virginia, Hamid has earned six caps with the U.S. Men’s National Team, but none since 2018.

During his time with D.C., Hamid has won one U.S. Open Cup back in 2013.

NYCFC’s James Sands training with Fortuna Dusseldorf

James Sands is the latest young American product to train this offseason in Europe.

Fortuna Dusseldorf announced Tuesday that Sands is training with the club following the conclusion of the 2019 MLS season. A product of NYCFC’s Academy, Sands broke into the club’s first team this season, making 18 appearances before suffering a broken collarbone in August.

Sands has also continued his rise through U.S. Soccer’s ranks, after totaling 42 appearances for the U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team from 2016-17′.

The 19-year-old follows the likes of Colorado Rapids’ Cole Bassett (Arsenal), Vancouver Whitecaps’ Simon Colyn (PSV), FC Cincinnati’s Spencer Richey (Crystal Palace), FC Dallas quartet Edwin Cerrillo, Ricardo Pepi, Bryan Reynolds and Thomas Roberts (Bayern Munich) and others have gone on, or are currently on, training stints this winter.

Sands will be training with the likes of fellow American players Zack Steffen and Alfredo Morales who are at Dusseldorf.

Revolution sign defender Mancienne to new contract

Michael Mancienne has signed a new contract with the New England Revolution.

The club announced the news on Monday, which will see Mancienne return to the club for his third MLS season. Mancienne, 31, has appeared in 26 matches for the Revolution since joining in 2018.

2019 saw Mancienne make 16 appearances for the Revolution, scoring one goal. His return to the club gives Bruce Arena an experienced defender to call on in 2020 and beyond.

Prior to his move to MLS, Mancienne spent time with Chelsea, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Queens Park Rangers, Hamburger, and Nottingham Forest.

NYCFC signs Tayvon Gray to Homegrown contract

Tayvon Gray has become NYCFC’s fourth Homegrown signing in club history.

The club announced the news on Tuesday, which sees the 17-year-old sign his first professional contract. Gray follows James Sands, Joe Scally, and Justin Haak as the academy players to sign a Homegrown deal.

“Tayvon’s been in our Academy for the past few years and really developed over the last 18 months and we couldn’t be more excited for him to join our First Team and be with us for the future,” NYCFC Sporting director David Lee said.

“Signing the contract is the first step for him to continue his development. He’s got a lot of potential and can play a number of positions—we’ve seen him play as a center back, a right back and in holding midfield—so we want to support his development and help him to maximize his potential.”

Since joining the NYCFC Academy in 2017, Gray has moved up the ranks within the club. He anchored the backline on the Under-19 team who has won back-to-back U-19 U.S. Development Academy National Championships.

Internationally, Gray made two appearances for the U.S. Under-17 Men’s National Team at the FIFA U-17 World Cup this Fall.

“Since I’ve come into the Academy, my goal was to one day make it to the First Team,” Gray said. “I’ve been able to train and go on preseason with them before, but to now sign a professional contract is an amazing feeling. I’m ready to work as hard as I can to help this team achieve what we all want, to win the league.”

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