During today’s Media Day out at Children’s Mercy Park, Sporting Kansas City head coach and sporting director, Peter Vermes announced that the club will be parting ways with midfielder, Jose Mauri. Vermes did not elaborate on what roster mechanism Kansas City would use to release Mauri, but his time in Kansas City is done.
Mauri signed with Sporting in August of 2021 to a one and a half year guaranteed contract with an option for the 2023 season. He made nine appearances, eight of them starts and scored a goal in his first home start against the Chicago Fire.
He came off the bench in Kansas City’s 3-1 loss to Atlanta United in the season opener for Oriol Rosell in the 50th minute. Mauri was only on the field for 27 minutes though before being replaced by recently signed winger, Marinos Tzionis in the 77th minute. It’s never a great look to be pulled from a game that you substituted into less than a half hour before.
Since Mauri is on a guaranteed contract, the “easiest” way for Sporting to get him off the roster would be to use their one buyout of a guaranteed contract on him. Unfortunately since the season has started this would mean that while Sporting would get the senior roster spot and an international roster spot available, they would get no cap relief. According to the MLS Players Association, Mauri was making $660,000.
What this means for Kansas City on the field is that it creates a bit of a hole at the “6,” especially with Vermes also saying that Rosell is set to miss a few weeks with a hamstring issue. The most obvious replacement would be Remi Walter dropping into that spot and Felipe Hernandez taking his spot at the “8.” Other options would be moving Roger Espinoza back from his midfield spot, or even moving Kaveh Rad in there as he did some in preseason this year.
It will be interesting to see what Vermes and Sporting do, both in the short term, and in the long term with a likely open roster spot and international spot available to them but likely limited cap space.