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Sporting Kansas City announces the signing of Felipe Gutierrez

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Thad Bell

Sporting Kansas City announced that they have signed Felipe Gutierrez as a Designated Player. Gutierrez is a native of Quintero, Chile and has played for his country 35 times.

“You can say about a lot of players that have been around for a while that they have tremendous experience but if there is a player that fits into our system, he is one of those guys,” Sporting KC Manager Peter Vermes told reporters. “He is relentless in the way that he goes after the ball, he’s got a great engine, and he’s really street smart on the field, definitely a player that’s going to have an impact in our team.”

When Gutierrez left Chile in 2013, he went to play for FC Twente in Holland before moving to Real Betis in 2016, gaining experience at several spots in the midfield along the way.

According to Gutierrez, the process of coming to SKC began about three months ago when his agent brought up the idea of coming to Sporting Kansas City.

“I played a number of years in Holland at Twente and played the number 6, on the national team I play number 8 and I play the number 10 also,” Gutierrez explained. “I can play in the middle.”

With his versatility, there will be a lot of question about where Vermes starts to slot him in the lineup. Will he challenge Ilie or Roger Espinoza for times? Or supplant newcomer Yohan Croizet in the apparent attacking mid spot?

Here is the roster as it stands today.

Sporting KC’s Roster 2/6/18

Name Position Status Joined Contract Expiration Option Years
Name Position Status Joined Contract Expiration Option Years
Matt Besler CB 1/15/2009 2018 None
Graham Zusi RB DP 1/15/2009 2018 None
Kevin Ellis CB 2/18/2011 2018 None
Seth Sinovic LB 11/28/2011 2018 None
Ike Opara CB 12/12/2012 2019 2020
Jimmy Medranda CM 8/9/2013 2019 2020
Tim Melia GK 12/23/2014 2020 2021
Roger Espinoza CM DP 1/6/2015 2018 None
Daniel Salloi LW INT-HG 1/13/2016 2018 2019, 2020
Diego Rubio CF 3/8/2016 2018 2019
Adrian Zendejas GK 12/2/2016 2018 2019, 2020
Andrew Dykstra GK 12/22/2016 2018 None
Gerso Fernandes RW DP 1/4/2017 2019 2020
Ilie Sanchez CDM 1/13/2017 2018 2019
Colton Storm RB 1/13/2017 2018 2019, 2020
Soony Saad LW 1/30/2017 2018 2019
Amer Didic CB 5/31/2017 2018 2019, 2020
Cristian Lobato LB INT 6/29/2017 2018 2019
James Musa CDM INT 8/11/2017 2018 2019, 2020
Gianluca Busio FWD HG 8/25/2017 2020 2021, 2022
Kharlton Belmar FWD 9/15/2017 2018 2019, 2020
Khiry Shelton FWD 12/14/2017 2018 Unknown
Yohan Croizet CAM INT-DP 12/15/2017 2020 2021
Jaylin Lindsey RB HG 1/1/2018 2021 2022
Zach Wright FWD HG 1/17/2018 2018 2019, 2020, 2021
Emiliano Amor CB INT 1/18/2018 2018 Option to Buy
Matt Lewis CB HG 1/22/2018 2018 2019, 2020, 2021
Johnny Russell LW INT 1/31/2018 2020 2021
Felipe Gutierrez CM INT-DP 2/6/2018 2020 2021

That’s 29 players, counting Kevin Ellis and Soony Saad who are likely on their way out. 1st round pick Erik Dick is unsigned and some moves may need to be made to avoid four goalkeepers on the roster. Five DPs are still listed until Sporting KC indicate who they are buying down by the roster compliance date.