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MLS Ticker: Yarbrough joins Rapids on permanent deal, LAFC loans Rodriguez to Almeria, and more

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William Yarbrough played a key role for the Colorado Rapids in 2020 and has now seen his loan turn into a full transfer.

The Western Conference club announced the acquisition of Yarbrough on a permanent deal from Liga MX’s Club León. Yarbrough signed a three-year contract on Tuesday, which also comes with a club option for an additional year.

“We’re thrilled to be able to bring Will back to the club,” said Rapids Executive VP and GM Pádraig Smith said. “Will is a proven winner and his leadership within the locker room was invaluable as we navigated an unprecedented season last year. Bringing him back on a permanent basis was one of our top priorities this offseason and reinforces what we believe to be one of the best goalkeeping groups in the league.”

Yarbrough originally joined the Rapids in March 2020 on a one-year loan from Leon and went on to grab the No. 1 job. The 31-year-old started 14 of Colorado’s 18 regular season matches, posting a 6-4-4 record and four clean sheets. Yarbrough also started Colorado’s first-round match in the 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs.

Prior to arriving in MLS, Yarbrough spent his entire professional career with León, making 203 appearances and winning two BBVA Liga MX titles since debuting in July 2012.

LAFC loans Rodriguez to Almeria

With the MLS season still a while away from starting up, LAFC has loaned out a key attacking player for the time being.

Bob Bradley’s side has loaned forward Brian Rodríguez to Spanish Segunda Liga side UD Almería. Rodriguez’s loan begins immediately and runs through the conclusion of Almería’s 2020-21 campaign in May.

Rodriguez’s loan could become a permanent transfer if certain performance thresholds are met.

“Brian is joining Almería as they make a strong push for promotion to Spain’s top division,” said LAFC Co-President & General Manager John Thorrington. “Since his arrival in 2019, Brian has been a focal point of our attack and a huge reason for our success. This move gives him a great opportunity to play important games at the highest levels of European football.”

Signed in August 2019 as a Young Designated Player, Rodríguez would appear in 26 regular season matches (23 starts), three postseason games and four matches at the 2020 Concacaf Champions League. The 20-year-old forward led the team with seven assists last season, while also adding two goals.

Before LAFC, Rodríguez spent two-and-a-half seasons with Uruguayan side CA Peñarol, notching three goals and nine assists in 26 games across all competitions. Internationally, Rodríguez has been a mainstay for Uruguay’s senior side since his debut on September 7, 2019. He has three goals in nine international matches, and has appeared in three of Uruguay’s four 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.

With 16 games remaining, Almería currently sits in third place in the Segunda Liga standings with a 14-3-5 record (45 points). At the conclusion of the season, the top two teams will earn automatic promotion to Spain’s top division, while a third team earns promotion from a playoff bracket between the teams that finish from third to sixth.

Sounders add goalkeeper Richey

The Seattle Sounders bolstered its goalkeeping ranks by signing Spencer Richey on Tuesday.

In addition, the club has loaned out goalkeeper Trey Muse to USL Championship side San Diego Loyal SC. Richey, a Seattle native and University of Washington product, joins the Rave Green after five professional seasons with the Vancouver Whitecaps and FC Cincinnati.

Muse, a Homegrown Player signing prior to the 2019 campaign, has made 24 appearances for USL side Tacoma Defiance.

“We’re pleased to add a good local product like Spencer to the club and have him get to work with Tom Dutra and the rest of our goalkeeper unit,” said Sounders FC General Manager & President of Soccer Garth Lagerwey. “Loaning Trey to San Diego gives him a good opportunity for some meaningful minutes, and we look forward to seeing how he performs this season.”

Richey, 28, was Vancouver’s third round selection in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft following a standout career at the University of Washington. After spending three seasons with Whitecaps FC II, making 46 USL appearances, he joined FC Cincinnati in 2018 for its final season in USL, appearing in 16 games.

He remained with Cincinnati for its first two MLS seasons, starting 28 of 29 appearances. Outside of MLS play, he appeared in four Canadian Championship matches and two Concacaf Champions League fixtures with the Whitecaps.

The 21-year-old Muse signed with the Sounders as a Homegrown Player ahead of the 2019 season, starting 21 of 22 appearances as the primary goalkeeper for the Tacoma Defiance as a rookie. A collegiate All-American and National Champion at the University of Indiana, Muse conceded just 19 goals in 49 starts over two NCAA seasons, accumulating a 38-4-7 record.

Fire’s Frankowski obtains U.S. Green Card

Przemysław Frankowski will no longer occupy an international roster spot for the Chicago Fire, after receiving his U.S. Green Card on Tuesday.

The 25-year-old now frees up an international roster spot for the Fire going forward. Frankowski was signed by the Fire in January 2019 and is entering his third season in MLS for the club.

Since joining the Fire, he has made 50 appearances, tallying eight goals and 10 assists. The Fire currently has 11 international players under contract for the 2021 season which features Robert Berić, Gastón Giménez, Álvaro Medrán, and Miguel Navarro.

Minnesota United re-signs four players

Minnesota United re-signed four players to new contracts on Tuesday, keeping them for the near future.

Midfielder Jacori Hayes, defenders Brent Kallman and Callum Montgomery, and goalkeeper Adrian Zendejas all agreed to new deals ahead of the 2021 MLS season.

Hayes joined Minnesota via a trade with FC Dallas in 2020 after spending three seasons in Frisco. The 25-year-old has totaled 51 combined appearances between the regular season and playoffs, scoring two goals and registering four assists.

Kallman has spent his entire professional career with the Loons since first joining the club in 2013. With his signing in January 2017, he became the first Minnesotan to join the Loons in MLS. Throughout five MLS seasons with the club, Kallman has played in 67 matches, scoring two goals and adding one assist.

Minnesota traded with FC Dallas for Montgomery in December 2020 and was a former first round draft pick in 2019. Zendejas was acquired via trade from Nashville SC in September 2020 to bolster a goalkeeper union struggling through injuries down the stretch of the season.

Galaxy announces Vanney’s coaching staff

The LA Galaxy announced Greg Vanney’s coaching and technical staff ahead of his first season in charge of the club.

Dan Calichman, Nick Theslof, and Jason Bent have all been hired as assistant coaches while Kevin Hartman has been named goalkeeping coach. Calichman, Theslof, and Bent all served as assistants with Vanney during his time at Toronto FC while Hartman is a club legend with the Galaxy from his playing days.

Hartman, who also served as the LA Galaxy Academy Director, holds the club’s all-time record in appearances at goalkeeper. Hartman played from 1997-2006, making 243 appearances while helping lead the Galaxy to two MLS Cup championships. He helped lead the LA Galaxy to two MLS Cups (2003, 2005), two Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cups (2001, 2005) and two MLS Supporters’ Shields (1998, 2002).

The Galaxy will aim to return to the MLS Cup Playoffs in 2021 after missing last season.

Milinkovic mutually departs Whitecaps

David Milinković has mutually agreed to leave the Vancouver Whitecaps, after seeing his contract terminated Tuesday.

The deal was completed on Monday prior to the closure of the European Transfer Window. Milinkovic as of now remains as a free agent.

“Last year, around the start of the pandemic, David and his partner welcomed their first child and there was a disconnect with their families back in Europe,” said Whitecaps FC sporting director and chief executive officer Axel Schuster. “Based on where we are headed as a team and David’s desire to move closer to home, this was the best time to make this decision for everyone involved. We are thankful to David for his service at the club and wish him and his family all the best.”

Milinković arrived in Vancouver in January 2020 and made 16 appearances for the club, scoring one goal and added four assists. The French-born winger was originally acquired on loan from England club Hull City and has bounced around throughout Europe in his career.

LAFC signs recent acquisition Romero

LAFC signed 20-year-old goalkeeper Tomas Romero on Monday after acquiring him in a trade in January.

The Western Conference club acquired Romero’s MLS Homegrown rights from the Philadelphia Union in exchange for $50,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM). Romero now comes to LAFC in hopes of earning valuable experience in an early chapter of his career.

“Tomas is an exciting prospect with experience at the youth, collegiate and international levels,” said LAFC Co-President & General Manager John Thorrington. “He will be a strong addition to our goalkeeping group, and we look forward to seeing him develop further here at LAFC.”

From 2017-19, Romero appeared in 17 games for Bethlehem Steel of the USL Championship. The 6-foot-1 goalkeeper also saw action in 36 matches for the Union Academy’s U-15/16, U-17/18 and U-18/19 teams.

In his first and only season at Georgetown University, Romero led the Hoyas to the 2019 Division I National Championship, posting a 9-0-3 record and registering seven shutouts and 30 saves as a freshman.

Atlanta United waives forward Jahn

Adam Jahn’s time with Atlanta United is over after the Eastern Conference club waived him on Tuesday.

The Five Stripes announced the roster move on Tuesday, ending a one-year stay in Atlanta for Jahn. Jahn, 30, scored three goals in his time with the Five Stripes and will now seek the next spot in his career.

“Adam was a true professional during his time here and we want to thank him for his contributions to the club,” Atlanta United Vice President and Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra said. “We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.”

Jahn originally joined the Five Stripes in January 2020 via a transfer from Phoenix Rising of the USL Championship. Last season, he appeared in 21 matches, registering two assists to go along with his three goals scored. In seven MLS seasons, Jahn has scored 15 goals in 124 matches.

Comments

  1. Hopefully COVID deaths turn around first and foremost. Then second hopefully MLS misfortunes with it. The bloodletting continues.

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