Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Silly Season Rumors: Besler is Bradley's Birnbaum Back Up Plan at Swansea

We're just over a month from the winter transfer window opening in Europe, and that means that it's time for some silly season rumors to start cropping up. With former US coach, Bob Bradley now the head coach at Swansea City in the Premier League it has started a number of rumors about the club being interested in different American players.

Reports today out of the UK are linking Swansea City with a move for DC United defender, Steve Birnbaum, to help shore up a defense that has allowed the second most goals in the Premier League this season. If Swansea can't get a deal done for Birnbaum, who is reportedly set to sign a new deal with DC United, the report states that Bradley will turn his attention to Sporting KC and US international, Matt Besler.

Besler is coming off what he would probably call his toughest season as a pro, appearing in just 18 games, the fewest since his second season in the league in 2010, just 18 games part of that was because of a concussion he suffered on international duty, part was because of a dip in form. He also was stripped of the captain's armband by Peter Vermes, who handed the captaincy to Roger Espinoza. Off the field it was a good year for the KC native as he welcomed his first child, a daughter, and shortly after scored his first international goal for the United States.

If indeed Swansea is actually interested, it would require a transfer fee for them to get Besler as he currently has two years left on the Designated Player contract that he signed with the club after the 2014 World Cup (even if he's not a DP any more). On the KC side of things, it'd be hard to part with a player who is one of the faces of the franchise, and a local product who has spent his entire professional career with the club. On the other side of things though it would open up quite a bit of salary cap space for Sporting KC to utilize on top of the space they've already cleared with offseason moves so far.

I'm not one to put much stock in this rumor as a whole, but if it is true, it's something that Peter Vermes at least needs to hear how much Swansea is offering for Besler before saying no.

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