Austin FC continued to bolster its roster for its first season in MLS by adding five players in Sunday’s Trade Window.
Nick Lima and Ulises Segura were among the acquisitions made by Josh Wolff’s side, continuing to prepare for their debut campaign in 2021. The club now has seven players under contract for next season, but will still have plenty of moves left to make with the MLS Expansion Draft coming up.
In addition, Jon Gallagher, Ben Sweat, and Julio Cascante were also added in separate deals, giving Wolff a slew of experience at different positions.
Here’s a breakdown of each Austin FC trade made on Sunday:
Lima acquired in trade with San Jose Earthquakes
Nick Lima made the move from San Jose to Austin, with the Earthquakes receiving $500,000 in General Allocation Money in exchange. The U.S. Men’s National Team defender played four seasons for the Earthquakes and is an experienced right back in MLS.
“I have been fortunate to be a part of the Earthquakes organization for a long time, both at the youth and First Team levels,” said Lima. “I want to thank the Quakes for giving me a chance to begin my professional career with my hometown club and I’ll forever be grateful for the opportunity to play in front of my friends and family. I’m excited about this new opportunity with Austin FC and am looking forward to helping a new and exciting club make its mark on Major League Soccer in 2021.”
A product of San Jose’s Academy, Lima has scored seven goals and added seven assists in 100 combined appearances for the club. He has also earned 10 caps for the USMNT to date and is the first Quakes Homegrown player to depart the club.
Lima’s arrival should see him slot in at right back for Austin FC.
Ulises Segura added in trade with D.C. United
The club added midfielder Ulises Segura in a deal with D.C. United which saw the expansion club send $150,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM) the opposite way.
Segura, 27, was acquired by D.C. United from Costa Rican side Deportivo Saprissa in December 2017. He went on to make score five goals and register three assists in 68 league appearances for the Black and Red, but will now make the switch to the Texas-based club.
He has also won 10 caps for the Costa Rica National Team.
Ben Sweat makes move from Inter Miami
Inter Miami also traded defender Ben Sweat to the expansion club for $100,000 in GAM, giving Austin FC another experienced player for it debut league season.
Jon Gallagher acquired in deal with Atlanta United
Austin FC also added a young midfielder to the mix with the acquisition of Jon Gallagher from Atlanta United. In exchange, the Five Stripes received $225,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM) from the expansion club.
Gallagher originally joined Atlanta United after being selected in the 2018 MLS SuperDraft. He made his MLS debut during the 2020 season and went on to score four goals in 16 appearances for the club, his best haul yet in league play.
The 24-year-old excelled collegiately at the University of Notre Dame, scoring 39 goals in 84 appearances. He was also loaned out by Atlanta United to Scottish club Aberdeen and to USL affiliate Atlanta United II during his time as a professional.
Cascante added to Austin FC to bolster defensive corps
Austin FC’s third and final defensive acquisition of the day came in the form of Julio Cascante.
The Portland Timbers defender made the switch to the expansion club in exchange for $250,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM) in 2021. Additional Allocation Money may be received by Portland based on Cascante’s performance with Austin.
“On behalf of everyone in the club, I want to thank Julio for his professionalism and commitment,” Timbers GM and President of Soccer Gavin Wilkinson said. “After several end-of-year meetings with the player, there was a collective opinion that he needed a new environment to fulfill his aspirations within the game and we wish him and his family all the best for the future.”
Since joining Portland in 2018 from Costa Rican side Deportivo Saprissa, the 27-year-old Cascante scored two goals and added two assists in 51 appearances. He made five appearances for the club in 2020.