On Tuesday, Sporting Kansas City made their first move to add a player during the offseason. They drafted goalkeeper Richard Sanchez from the Chicago Fire. Sanchez will be 26-years-old in April of next year and joins Tim Melia and Eric Dick on the Sporting KC goalkeeper depth chart. Sanchez will likely battle Dick for the backup job behind entrenched starter Melia.
He’s the third keeper the team has selected in the Re-Entry draft in recent years (Alec Kann and Andrew Dysktra).
The need to acquire a keeper came when Sporting KC traded their previous backup, Adrian Zendejas, to 2020 MLS Expansion team Nashville SC.
Sanchez brings a great deal more experience to the backup role than Eric Dick, who is also currently 25-years-old. He has made 27 MLS appearances (26 starts), all while a member of the Chicago Fire. Sanchez got all but two of those appearances in 2018 when he was the Fire’s primary keeper.
Chicago isn’t Sanchez’s first MLS team as he came up through the FC Dallas Academy and spent four years on their pro roster despite not making a single appearance. Before that he was a member of the Atletico Madrid Academy in Spain.
In his MLS career, he has allowed 51 goals which comes out to a 1.92 goals per 90 minutes stat. It’s not a solid number, but he’s been a part of some bad Chicago Fire teams. Another poor stat is that he has just three clean sheets in all his MLS games. He was just 7-14-6 (W-L-D) as a starter in Chicago.
In 2019 he made $152,500.00 for the Fire. Chicago re-signed him in 2018 to a contract that includes a 2020 option. Sporting KC would presumably inherit that contract unless they negotiate a new deal with him. It’s fairly standard in MLS deals to be given a raise of around five percent. His base pay was $150,000.00 so with a raise that’d be $157,500.00 plus whatever prorated bonuses he’s already earned. Sporting are probably in for $160,000.00 in 2020.
Sanchez does not require an international roster spot and he no longer counts as a Homegrown despite initially being signed with that designation.
That should allow Dick to spend most of his time with Sporting KC II. However, it could be they are battling for the backup job since they are only a few months apart in age and one could theoretically push the other out before the 2021 season. In the mean time, maybe both will play in the USL Championship.
For more detail on Sanchez, the team’s official site has a rundown of his time in the NASL, Liga MX and other stops on his journey.
Here are his vitals per SportingKC.com:
Born: 4/5/1994 (25 years old)
Weight: 197 lbs.
Hometown: Little Elm, Texas
Birthplace: Mission Hills, California
Citizenship: Mexico, USA
Previous Club: Chicago Fire