Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. The close of the secondary transfer window doesn’t mean that Sporting Kansas City or any other MLS team cannot sign another player. Sure they can’t make trades or request the transfer certificate of players. But options are still available.
MLS teams have until the 2019 roster freeze deadline — August 30th — to sign players that are out of contract. This transfer window they did make one trade, sending Kelyn Rowe to Real Salt Lake for
Garber Bucks Targeted Allocation Money (TAM) and an international roster spot, but their other moves were “free.”
First, they signed 18-year-old midfielder (or potentially future right back) Cameron Duke to a Homegrown contract. Then they signed Portuguese left back Luis Martins, who was out of contract after his previously club released him. Those players could have been added tomorrow if they wanted (though SKC needed that international spot they got in the trade for Martins).
In 2018 SKC didn’t make any moves. In 2017 they were close to adding Martinique striker Kevin Parsemain (until random rules and drama derailed that move). They also added a little known 15-year-old midfielder named Gianluca Busio in 2017, even though he didn’t get to play that year. In addition at the last moment they signed some Swope Park Rangers, Kharlton Belmar and Kevin Oliveira, right at the roster freeze deadline. 2017 was an eventful year.
In 2016 they added midfielder Benji Joya (who was later cut). You can see the trend here. It’s not likely to be a game breaking player (or at least not one who is going to breakout immediately). But that’s often the case with SKC’s moves in the middle of the year.
Who May Get Signed?
To be clear, this is just speculation. I have no inside information. My best guess is one of three things. A Swope Park Ranger getting promoted. A Homegrown signing from the SKC Academy that only the most hardcore fans would be aware of. Or an unknown player who is out of contract from somewhere around the world.
Swope Park Rangers - The Rangers are having their worst season in club history. That said, midfielder Felipe Hernandez should be signed as a Homegrown. I could see the team waiting until the offseason to make that move, but is should be made. There are several other SPR players deserving of a deal, though I can’t see those happening anytime soon. Goalkeeper John Pulskamp could be the 3rd GK on the SKC roster in 2020 if you ask me. The other quality candidate is left back Alexsander, which seems less likely because he’s an international and SKC just added a left back.
SKC Academy - I think the Duke move will be the last one we see in 2019. 15-year-old forward Osvaldo Cisneros could get a contract, but there is probably no rush there. A sleeper pick is Kaveh Rad who has looked good at center back for SPR. He’s just 18 and CB is a position of limited depth for Sporting after the Feilhaber/Rwatubyaye trade.
Out of Contract Veteran - Your guess is as good as mine.
There is just a single roster spot available, so a move could happen. If a player comes from abroad, they would require an international roster spot which SKC can no longer trade to acquire. So that would mean someone like Nicolas Hasler would have to be cut to make way. Even though nothing is likely to happen, it’s still something to keep an eye on.