FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Inter Miami’s training facility and stadium are still under construction, and the same can be said for the club’s roster.
Inter Miami is quickly approaching its first season, but still has positional needs it wants to address sooner rather than later. The addition of a talented attacking midfielder has been all but crossed off the team’s wish list after the Thursday arrival of Rodolfo Pizarro, but there are still two other types of players that Inter Miami wants to sign to round out its roster.
“We’re still looking to add a (No.) 9 and a two-way midfielder,” said sporting director Paul McDonough on Friday morning before training. “Both remaining players will come from outside the league.”
While McDonough did not mention the names of the players he is targeting for those spots, he touched on the persistent rumors of one particular forward. McDonough confirmed there had been talks between Inter Miami and Liga MX side Club America over the services of Roger Martinez, but stated that negotiations to sign the Colombian international became very challenging.
“Roger Martinez is someone that we’ve spoken to Club America about. It’s proven to be very difficult,” said McDonough. “I don’t think there’s any secret about that. If it was something that could have gotten done, then Roger Martinez would have been someone that would have interested me in bringing him to the club.
“With his age and the price, that would have been someone that would have fit in my (Designated Player) strategy.”
As far as DPs go, the idea right now for Inter Miami is to try and have the maximum of three by the start of the season. Pizarro will become the second DP on the roster once his move from Monterrey is finalized, but who and what kind of player will join him and youngster Matias Pellegrini in that category is unknown.
McDonough also made it clear that while the team has the resources to sign the kind of high-profile big name that would make major headlines and that it has regularly been linked to, he does not believe Inter Miami has to use its final DP spot on an established older star. According to McDonough, Inter Miami has moved into the transfer market with an open mind as to who he might bring on board.
“The ownership group could do it if they wanted to, but I don’t think it’s responsible for us just to open up a blank checkbook and just write checks because an experienced player wants it,” said McDonough. “I can go get a player that has a resale value, that can help us win championships, and I think that’s more responsible.
“If it is a veteran player that can help us win and the price is within reason, then that’s okay. We’ll explore that.”
As for when that DP and the other player might be signed, McDonough said he is not rushing into any decisions. The season is looming, but Inter Miami is trying to be smart about who it completes the roster with.
“I want to make sure the last two pieces are really the right fit for this team because I’m happy with where this team is,” said McDonough. “I want it to be done as soon as possible, but I want to make sure it is the right fit for us.”