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MLS Ticker: Parks returning to Benfica, Impact acquires Quioto, and more

Keaton Parks is one of six players who will not be returning to NYCFC in 2020.

NYCFC announced their roster moves on Wednesday, in which Parks’ loan from Benfica will not be extended. The 22-year-old made 22 appearances for the Eastern Conference club, scoring one goal and adding one assist.

His playing time rose drastically during the final months of the season, but he will now return to his parent club. Parks is under contract with Benfica until 2022, but has only made four senior appearances since joining in 2017.

Ebenezer Ofori, Eric Miller, Daniel Bedoya, Jeff Caldwell, and Abdi Mohamed all saw their player options declined for next season. Ofori, 24, has spent the last two seasons on loan with NYCFC from German 2. Bundesliga side VfB Stuttgart. He totaled 47 appearances in his time with the club, scoring three goals.

Miller was acquired in a trade with Minnesota United last season, but only made six appearances since coming to NYCFC. The MLS veteran has made 115 career regular season appearances.

Luis Barraza, Sebastien Ibeagha, Ronald Matarrita, and Brad Stuver will return to the club in 2020 after seeing their options picked up for next season.

NYCFC finished as the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference heading into the MLS Cup Playoffs, but were ousted in the second round by eventual finalists Toronto FC.

Dynamo acquire Honduran winger Quioto from Impact

The Montreal Impact bolstered its attacking corps on Wednesday, acquiring Honduran forward Romell Quioto from the Houston Dynamo. In exchange, the Dynamo acquired Argentine defender Victor Cabrera and $100,000 in General Allocation Money.

Quioto holds a green card and will not occupy an international roster spot for Montreal.

“We are pleased to acquire this versatile player, who can play in every attacking position and who has proven in the past that he can be successful in this league,” said sporting director Olivier Renard. “We want to thank Victor for his five years of service with the club. We can only wish him the best for his next chapter.”

The 28-year-old spent the last three seasons with the Dynamo, recording 15 goals and 17 assists in 72 regular season games. He has also played in 14 Concacaf Champions League games with Houston, while also earning 47 caps with the Hondruan National Team.

Rapids acquire defender Auston Trusty in trade with Union

The Colorado Rapids have added a young and promising defender to the mix for 2020.

The club announced Wednesday they’ve acquired center back Auston Trusty in a trade with the Philadelphia Union. In exchange, the Union will receive $300,000 in Targeted Allocation Money in 2020 and $300,000 in General Allocation Money in 2021. If Trusty meets certain performance metrics, the Union will receive an additional $150,000 in GAM.

Should Trusty be sold outside of the league on or before Dec. 2021, the Union will also receive 30% of the transfer fee. If it occurs after  Jan. 1, 2022, the Union would receive 25%.

“Auston is one of the best young defenders in MLS and we’re excited to have him join the club,”Colorado Rapids EVP & GM Pádraig Smith said. “Despite his young age, he has already gained significant experience in our league and has demonstrated his ability to compete at the highest level and we expect him to fit right into the young, dynamic core of players we are building our roster around.”

A Homegrown Signing in 2016, the 21-year-old Trusty totaled 56 appearances in three seasons for the Union. 2018 saw Trusty play every minute of the regular season, setting an MLS record as the youngest field player to do so.

Fabian, Fabinho, Allen see options declined by Union for 2020

The Philadelphia Union did not pick up players options for three players heading into the 2020 MLS season.

Marco Fabian, Fabinho, and RJ Allen saw options declined by the club on Wednesday after roster moves were announced. Fabian scored eight goals in 25 combined league appearances this season, scoring the game winner against the New York Red Bulls in the opening round of the MLS Cup Playoffs.

Fabinho made 123 appearances for the club since joining in 2014, scoring two goals and registering 15 assists. Allen was picked up as a free agent earlier this season, but failed to make a first team appearance for the club.

In addition, the Union picked up options on eight players including Mark McKenzie, Matt Real, Cory Burke, Warren Creavalle, and Anthony Fontana.

The Union have extended offers to Ilsinho, Fafa Picault, Jamiro Monteiro, and Aurelien Collin. Haris Medunjanin is out of contract and the Union will not be seeking a new contract with the Bosnian midfielder.

Rapids acquire Abubakar on permanent deal from Crew

Lalas Abubakar is returning to the Colorado Rapids on a permanent deal.

The club announced the move on Wednesday, which sees Abubakar return to the Rapids after spending half of the 2019 season on loan there. In exchange, the Crew receive $400,000 in General Allocation Money and a 2020 international roster spot.

“We couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome Lalas back,” Rapids Executive Vice President & General Manager, Padraig Smith said. “Since joining us last year Lalas has been an integral part of our team and has established himself as a top defender in MLS. We’re excited to have him with us from the start next year and build on the exceptional season he had in 2019.”

Abubakar, 24, made 22 starts for the Rapids since joining on loan, and was named the team’s Defensive Player of the Year. The former fifth overall pick in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft has 57 combined first team appearances in MLS, after spending his first two seasons with Columbus.

Timbers acquire Croatian defender Dario Zuparic

The Portland Timbers added a physical defender to the mix for 2020.

The club announced the signing of Croatian center back Dario Zuparic from Croatian Premier League side HNK Rijeka. Zuparic was acquired with the use of Targeted Allocation Money and has signed a multi-year contract with the club.

Zuparic, 27, began his professional career with HNK Cibalia, which was then in Croatia’s top flight. He has also spent time with Italian club Pescara before moving to Rijeka in 2017. In total, Zupraic has made 268 combined appearances, scoring seven goals and winning three professional trophies.

“Dario was targeted as a player of interest over a year ago and we are delighted to get a proven defender at a very good age to join the Timbers,” Timbers GM and President of Soccer Gavin Wilkinson said. “Dario brings a wealth of experience and we believe his playing style, experience and leadership qualities will be very beneficial to the team and we expect him to make a significant impact once he is fully transitioned.”

Born in Croatia, Zuparic represented both the Bosnia & Herzegovina and Croatia Youth National Teams.

“We are pleased to add Dario as a proven defender to our roster,” Timbers head coach Giovanni Savarese said. “Dario’s vast experience playing in Europe will be an important asset to strengthen our backline and his winning mentality perfectly aligns with the team’s culture.”




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