Toronto FC coach Mo Johnstonprobably isn't finished with the wheeling and dealing that highlighted the expansion draft last Friday.
Defender Tim Regan, waived by the former MetroStars last year and picked up by Chivas USA before being exposed in the expansion draft, is rumored to be on his way back to New York in exchange for talented but troubled striker Edson Buddle. Also, the Amado Guevera to Chivas USA trade that has been on-and-off again for months is possibly back on, but whether these are two separate deals or somehow tied to each other isn't known.
Chivas USA coach Bob Bradleyhas a few other issues to sort out, namely the status of midfielders John O'Brien and Juan Pablo Garcia, and forward Francisco Palencia. O'Brien, who counted for $270,000 against the salary cap last season and played all of five minutes, was left exposed in the expansion draft but wasn't taken. Garcia, a $600,000 player, is bound for a foreign club TBA, and Palencia ($1.36 million) hasn't stated unequivocally that he'll be back in LA next season.
MINOR POINTS. Once again, Real Salt Lake has paid out money it didn't have to.
In the 2005 SuperDraft, it gave up a minor allocation (valued at $100,000) in a trade with Los Angeles to take goalkeeper Jay Nolly late in the second round. One rival GM said, "I wish they'd offered me a minor allocation to pick a backup goalkeeper." Nolly has played seven games in his two MLS seasons.
In last Friday's expansion draft, RSL exposed Jason Kreis, who was promptly taken by Toronto. RSL got him back by paying some of that allocation money that Johnston is accruing as fast he can. Without releasing financial details, the league has increased the value of Toronto's three allocations, which is the same number of allocations granted to Real Salt Lake and Chivas USA in the 2005 expansion.
The rumored price for Kreis was $125,000. Officially, RSL paid a "partial allocation," which in past seasons has been a portion of a major allocation (previously valued at about $300,000). MLS also permits teams to "split" allocations into no more than three portions. In past seasons a minor allocation has been valued at $100,000.
RSL had to pay approximately $280,000 of Clint Mathis's salary last season to persuade Colorado to take him in a trade. That money counted against its 2006 salary cap of approximately $1.9 million.. By exposing Kreis and having to pay to get him back, it has already eaten up some of its allocation money.
The 2007 cap figure hasn't been set, but an increase to about $2.25 million is what a few coaches are assuming.
ADU TRIAL. Obviously Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson didn't get the Freddy Adu Memo.
A day after he denied that the D.C. youngster was coming to Old Trafford for two weeks' of training, he reversed direction and confirmed it. Since Adu's trial is a big publicity boost for MLS, Ferguson's initial denial probably means it was part of the marketing deal by which United visits America for preseason training.
If the incredible happens and United wishes to sign him to a contract, his age would bar him from playing in England, even at the reserve team level, until he turns 18 on June 2. He would also need a work permit, which United would have to acquire in the appeals process, since with one cap in a friendly he doesn't meet the benchmark of appearing in 75 percent of his country's competitive internationals the past two years.
United could loan him out, but no EU country can register a non-EU player under age 18 acquired in a transfer for competitive play unless the player and his family meet residency standards which, obviously, Adu cannot meet.
Could United sign him and loan him back to MLS until he turns 18 in June? Probably. Since he can't play anyway until the European season ends, going overseas in January would offer him great training opportunities and primo seats for EPL and Champions' League matches, but no competitive action.