After a long transfer saga that lasted a couple years, FC Dallas finally announced that Home-Grown Goalkeeper Richard Sanchez has been transferred to Tigres UANL of Liga MX. This didn't really come as a surprise to anyone, as we all knew he wanted to see first-team minutes and that was not happening at FCD with Raul Fernandez and Chris Seitz firmly ahead of him in the pecking order. Now that Sanchez has left for Tigres, this leaves an open roster spot for FCD to fill if they choose. Teams are allowed to have up to 30 players, and FCD now have only 29.
I will start with the unlikely - Brek Shea
It has been rumored that Brek Shea is likely to leave Stoke City again following their upcoming campaign. Whether it is on loan or on full transfer we will have to wait and see, but I wouldn't expect him to suit up in an FCD kit anytime soon. FCD has already brought in several wingers this season (Hollingshead, Span, Escobar) so adding another one is unlikely, not to throw in that Shea is older than the other 3. Don't hold your breath.
One that is slightly more likely, albeit still very unlikely - Jermaine Jones
Jermaine Jones is apparently interested in a move stateside now that the WC is over and one would assume several MLS sides would be interested as well. Jones would likely skip the allocation order process due to signing as a Designated Player (The Dempsey Rule) and sign with whichever team he comes to terms with. With FC Dallas already bringing in Adam Moffat, who has finally settled in, as well as Hendry Thomas who quickly established himself at FCD, added with the revival of Victor Ulloa, it would be unlikely that FCD bring in another defensive mid.
Jones would also carry a DP tag, which FC Dallas already have three of, so the front office would have to release one of the three current Designated Players to bring Jones in. Again, don't make any bets on this one. And if you follow me on twitter (@riesekyle) you probably already know I believe he will be in a Sporting KC jersey in less than a fortnight.
Ok, so let's get a bit more serious here; how about a Center Back?
FC Dallas has had injury problems the last 3 seasons and the center back position has been key in each season. FCD stressed in the offseason that they wanted to bring another one in and they did that with Nicholas Walker, but Oscar Pareja seems hesitant to play him. Pareja has instead opted to play the likes of Zach Loyd and Moises Hernandez out of position to fill in instead of playing Walker who is a natural center back. It wouldn't surprise me to see FCD trade allocation money they received from the sale of Sanchez to bring in a CB from somewhere else in the league. I would give this option about a 45% chance of happening.
Let's talk Homegrown
With the sale of Sanchez it should be the perfect time to introduce the club to another HG talent. There are four options here in my opinion and I will list them in order.
1) Boyd Okwuonu - Although it would have made more sense for the club to sign him during the offseason, it isn't too late right now. Currently he is playing with the Orlando City U-23s and could easily opt out continuing his college career to join FCD if called upon. Boyd is a Center Back, therefore filling a need for FCD while also not hurting the cap since he would sign as a HG.
2) Coy Craft/Aaron Meyer - Ok, so I couldn't separate the two, but Oscar Pareja has spoken highly of the pair and I wouldn't be surprised to see them both ink homegrown contracts in the next 12 months. Craft will surely be a great forward one day while it appears Meyer will have a fantastic career as a midfielder himself.
3) Mikey Ambrose - A player I have always thought highly of, but has been put in a tough situation with the way the club currently has its roster built. Ambrose is a left back, but FCD already have Michel, Benitez and Hernandez in that position. It's quite possible that Ambrose comes in next season if FCD choose to part ways with Benitez, but until then I'm not sure he signs a pro contract.
I would imagine a 50-55% chance of a homegrown signing with this open place.
Ok, so there we have it. That's what I think FCD will do, or won't do, with their open roster spot. What are your thoughts? What do you think they should do with it?