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Sporting KC Announce Roster Moves Including Espinoza, Besler and 13 Others

Oh captain, my captain...

MLS: Minnesota United FC at Sporting Kansas City Peter G. Aiken

Sporting Kansas City announced decisions on the 15 players today less than a week after they were eliminated from the 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs.

The club picked up the 2021 options on Johnny Russell, Amadou Dia, Felipe Hernandez and Graham Smith. They also list Gadi Kinda, which confirms the previous rumor that they bought his loan deal out and he’s been made a permanent member of the team. Not listed in the article from SKC as having their options picked up are Gianluca Busio and Daniel Salloi, though they are listed as already being on the roster so it’s possible those options were picked up at a previous date.

The team confirmed they declined the options on Eric Dick, Wan Kuzain Wan Kamal, Winston Reid and Richard Sanchez. All of which were somewhat expected.

The team also confirmed they are currently in negotiations with Roger Espinoza, Gerso Fernandes, Felipe Gutierrez and Erik Hurtado. Three of those four players, excluding Gutierrez, were out of contract following the season. Felipe Gutierrez was originally reported to have a 2021 option in his deal, so it’s possible they declined the option and are trying to negotiate a different contract as he has missed a good portion of the three seasons in KC.

Who they simply listed as out of contract was Kansas City native and 12-year MLS veteran, Matt Besler. There was no mention of a new deal for the former captain. Besler then immediately went on social media and posted that his time as a Sporting KC player has come to an end but his time as a professional player doesn’t appear to be done.

“I remain hungry and excited for whatever new opportunities lie ahead and look forward to entering the free agency market,” stated Besler.

The Blue Testament will bring you more analysis of these moves in the coming days, including the results of the fan vote of who you guys wanted to stick around. Peter Vermes will also hold a press conference today which we’ll bring coverage of.