The biggest trade in MLS history ended up being to be too much of a price to pay for the New York Red Bulls.
The team considered adding striker Dom Dwyer, but found the asking price to be well outside their evaluation of the All-Star forward.
A couple weeks ago, Dwyer was traded from Sporting Kansas City to Orlando City in a move that generated quite a bit of buzz. That Orlando went on to pay what potentially could be $1.6 million in allocation money for the United States international is the real sticking point of the deal.
It is far and away the most allocation money ever dealt in the history of MLS and it’s a move that sends shockwaves throughout the league. It also had an earthquake-like effect around the league on player evaluations.
According to head coach Jesse Marsch, the Red Bulls talked about pursuing Dwyer, a player who would have joined up with Bradley Wright-Phillips and created a formidable strikeforce. But while the Red Bulls were loaded with allocation money at that time, they didn’t consider the asking price for Dwyer to be within their range for one player.
Keep in mind that this past offseason, the Red Bulls traded their captain Dax McCarty to the Chicago Fire for $400,000 in allocation money. It was a deal that, at the time, was among the most expensive ever between two MLS teams.
McCarty was an MLS All-Star this year, meaning that the Dwyer deal really skews the metrics.
“We had heard that Dwyer was potentially moving on, whether internationally or in the league. We visited the possibility of what it would be like to have him and then the numbers started being reported – it seemed like a lot,” Marsch said.
“The numbers are very, very surprising. Obviously, the money being tossed around in this league right now has grown immensely. It makes it a little bit harder to figure out what player’s values are within the league.
“For example, $400,000 for Dax seven months ago seemed like a lot of money and now obviously, it seems like a lot less. That makes it scary to even think about, six months from now what the numbers might look like, especially knowing that more TAM (team allocation money) is being injected and the salary cap is expected to grow.”
Wednesday saw the close of the summer transfer window for the New York Red Bulls. Despite not making any moves at the deadline, they might not be done making additions to their squad.
The bulk of the Red Bulls’ moves came earlier in the summer transfer window, signing Panamanian international Fidel Escobar and Norwegian winger Muhamed Keita. Neither player has featured for the Red Bulls as Escobar continues to work in with the team and Keita is hurt, not expected to begin training until next week.
Despite the end of the transfer window, the Red Bulls can still sign players. While they can’t bring in any player involving a transfer, a loan or a trade, the roster freeze date isn’t for a few more weeks. This means that they can add a free agent or a player internally.
“There’s still a window open in terms of free agents. We’ll have a couple more additions here soon. Nothing to announce by the deadline,” Marsch said. “Nothing that we felt was attractive enough to make a move on.”
Trialist Dilly Duka, the former Red Bulls Academy prospect, was signed late Wednesday afternoon.
“Dilly is a veteran player, and our staff is very familiar with him,” said Red Bulls Sporting Director Denis Hamlett in a press release. “We’ve been able to have him in training for a few weeks and we’ve liked what he has shown. He brings attacking quality and experience to our roster, and we expect him to contribute moving forward.”
Another player to keep an eye on for a potential move to the MLS side is Vincent Bezecourt.
Now in his second year with the USL side, Bezecourt continues to impress with the New York Red Bulls II and has been among the best players in the league.