Monday, September 07, 2015

Could Rosell Return to KC?

Early in the 2014 season, Sporting Kansas City transferred Spanish defensive midfielder, Oriol Rosell to Portuguese side, Sporting Club de Portugal. At the time, the transfer was seen with disappointment and happiness that the club was losing one of their better players, but that he was going to one of the giants of Portugal and a perennial Champions League team. From the Portugal side of things it was thought that Rosell would eventually replace William Carvalho who was a target of clubs in the EPL. Carvalho hasn't left though and Rosell hasn't gotten a ton of playing time with the club. Last year he played just 482 minutes in league play, added another 500 in domestic cups, and 88 minutes in European competitions last year. This year, Rosell has yet to dress for his club as they started their 2015-2016 season a few weeks ago.

With that lack of playing time, it's led to rumors of Rosell's departure from the club, including a rumored return to the States. A report today out of Portugal linked Rosell with not just a return to the US, but a return to Sporting KC. According to the article, KC has already shown interest in the Spaniard returning to the club he enjoyed enough success to earn him a move in the first place.

The thought of Rosell returning to KC is certainly something that would be welcomed with open arms by the fans, Rosell had quickly become a fan favorite during his time in KC made even greater by his departure and KC's struggles to replace him. In reality though it seems that KC may have finally found someone that replaced him, in Haitian, Soni Mustivar. Since replacing Servando Carrasco, Mustivar has stabilized the defensive midfield position and the back line behind him. A returning Rosell would immediately create more competition for time in the midfield, but it'd also become a question of who starts and who sits. Right now KC's starting midfield when everyone is healthy is quite formidable with the likes of Mustivar, Roger Espinoza, and Benny Feilhaber. While having depth is good, there are also other areas that most fans would say need to be addressed before the midfield right now.

Beside Rosell's place on the field, the bigger question may be how KC's acquires him should he return to the US. Since KC received a transfer fee for Rosell from Sporting Portugal, if Rosell returns to the US he would be subjected to the allocation rules. It's the same process that saw Kei Kamara return to the Columbus Crew late last year after being released from his contract by Middlesbrough. Currently KC is in sixth place in the allocation order behind the LA Galaxy, Chicago Fire, Houston Dynamo, Philadelphia Union, and Portland Timbers. That means that KC would either have to hope for all five of those teams to pass on signing Rosell (which I really can't see happening), or KC is going to have to make a deal with someone in front of them to move up in the order to grab him. A trade would likely have to involve either allocation money (which rumor was KC had plenty of) or potentially the new targeted allocation money. The later might appeal greatly to the team at the top of the order, the Galaxy, as they've already used all of their TAM to buy down the contract of Omar Gonzalez to allow them to sign Giovani dos Santos as another designated player earlier this year. A way around the allocation order could be to make Rosell a designated player (if MLS were to agree to that contract).

The other thing with this move to keep in mind is that it wouldn't help KC this year, the earliest Rosell could help is in 2016. The reason for this is that MLS's transfer window is closed, any player that KC signs between now and the September 16th roster freeze date have to be out of contract before the MLS window closed. If Rosell is released from his contract between now and the end of the MLS season, KC would only have to move up from sixth and he would officially be added to the roster when MLS' primary window opens in early 2016. Once the season ends though the order resets based on the 2015 finish that will likely see KC move further back in the order.

UPDATE: This further article though makes it seem that Sporting CP isn't going to be letting Rosell go cheaply. Apparently they want to recoup the money that they'd spent on purchasing Rosell from KC last year. Sporting spending that amount for Rosell seems extremely unlikely, especially when Rosell would probably come with a larger contract than the one he left with. Over spending to get Rosell back would be counter productive, the same way over spending to get the first spot in the allocation order last year to get Kei Kamara wouldn't have been in KC's best interest (even with Kamara's goal output this year).

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good analysis. What is Kamara's contract situation now with CLB? Any chance of signing him?

Anonymous said...

Good analysis. What is Kamara's contract situation now with CLB? Any chance of signing him?

Sean Curry said...

Don't know how Sporting can be a championship team with one player on the entire roster that can play defensive midfield. And who is Sporting willing to spend money on? While many teams in the league get high priced DP's, Sporting isn't even willing to pay $1 million for Rosell, which they already received for him. Not getting Rosell because Mustivar is on the team is ridiculous. Not being willing to pay even a $1 million transfer fee, while other teams are paying 5 or 6 times that, in some cases for multiple players, would be even worse.

Mike said...

Who is LA's back up defensive midfielder behind Juninho? Who is New York's defensive midfielder behind Dax? Who is Seattle's defensive midfeidler behind Alonso? Those are all defensive midfielders who don't have great replacements at defensive midfield unless they move another player out of a better position for them, but are all contenders.


They also didn't get $1m for Rosell the fee was split between MLS and SKC. Even if they did get all, they're not paying just the $1m they're also going to be probably doubling if not more the salary that Rosell was on when it was here. While KC hasn't spent $1m or more on a lot of players (reports at the time were that they spent over $1m to get Bieler), they haven't really had the need for it, Vermes has gotten the most out of his players, there's not a need to go and spend millions to get a Gerrard, a Lampard, or a Pirlo.

Mike said...

Also Mustivar isn't the only d-mid, Lopez and Okugo both play d-mid, just like the examples above, the defensive midfield position is not a priority outside the starter.

Sean Curry said...

Good points. Vermes has been a genius developing players, getting more starts from rookies than anyone, finding under the radar players like Mustivar and Nemeth. He won MLS Cup with 16 th highest payroll out of 19 teams. Defensive Mid is a very important position in the SKC 4-1-2-3 formation. And Lopez and OKugo have not shown so far that they can handle the role. Adding Uri might also provide options for covering for Roger when he is out, too. I could see the possibility of either player filling in when Roger is suspended or injured. Might need to tweak to 4-2-1-3, but it could work. With some teams spending $25 million plus on payroll, and SKC spending $5 million, Uri is not an expensive option. Also, like Roger, "made in KC" is the culture of this team and getting Uri back would be more important than another similarly priced player.

Sean Curry said...

Good points. Vermes has been a genius developing players, getting more starts from rookies than anyone, finding under the radar players like Mustivar and Nemeth. He won MLS Cup with 16 th highest payroll out of 19 teams. Defensive Mid is a very important position in the SKC 4-1-2-3 formation. And Lopez and OKugo have not shown so far that they can handle the role. Adding Uri might also provide options for covering for Roger when he is out, too. I could see the possibility of either player filling in when Roger is suspended or injured. Might need to tweak to 4-2-1-3, but it could work. With some teams spending $25 million plus on payroll, and SKC spending $5 million, Uri is not an expensive option. Also, like Roger, "made in KC" is the culture of this team and getting Uri back would be more important than another similarly priced player.