[OFF THE POST]
The report that NASL clubs San Antonio and Fort Lauderdale agreed to a deal that sent Walter Restrepo
Scorpions in exchange for their picking up the tab (hotel and local transportation) on the Strikers' trip to San Antonio in 2013 raised lots of eyebrows, but in the wacky world of soccer it would
hardly rank among the most unusual arrangements. We'll cite just a few bizarre deals, going with the food category.
-- Manchester United didn't always have the war chest it has now to
spend on players. In 1927, it sought to acquire Hugh McLenahan
from Stockport County. Louis Rocca
, who worked at United
for 50 years and is best known for having helped bring Matt Busby
to the club, clinched the deal when he agreed to throw in a freezer-full of ice cream from the
family gelato business in Manchester.
-- In 2002, Kenneth Kristensen
moved from Norwegian third division club Vindbjart to rival Floey Flekkeroy
for his weight in shrimp -- about 165 pounds. Vindbjart president Vidar Ulstein
was almost apologetic about the deal. "Kenneth really wanted to play for Floey
and we didn't want to cause him any problems," he said. "But he is under contract with us, so we had to demand some kind of compensation."
-- Finally, the ignominy of being transferred
proved to be too much for defender Marius Cioara
of Romanian second division club Arad. It was bad enough he was being shipped off to fourth division Regal
Hornia, but to add insult to injury in this 2010 deal Arad was getting sausage -- 15 kilos -- in return. Cioara retired from soccer instead of going to Hornia, which demanded its sausage back.