The Diego Forlan announcement.. IN 3D!!! After his predecessor rolled out such tender chewy sound bites as "the best finisher in the modern era" and "like a son that needs a slap", you'd think that TFC manager Ryan Nelsen may choose his words more carefully. But alas, the increasingly agitated Kiwi let fly last week that once TFC got rid of those pesky salary cap issues (that apparently no other MLS club has ever encountered) there would be "a few frightened teams" in MLS.
Meanwhile... deep below BMO Field... It's the latest gag sensation at Toronto FC - not that they really needed new ones - Kevin Payne and his Scrooge McDuck lovin' for some good old American Cheddar aka Allocation Money. The image of a tiny Kevin sitting atop an ever growing cartoon pile of gold coins is a delicious one while the term "Allocation" has now become part of your average TFC fan's daily parlance.
Like Scrooge on Christmas, Kevin Payne flung open the Transfer Window this morning and sent a young boy on his way. Rather than send the youngster for the biggest goose however, Payne sent young Luis Silva packing for the other nation's capital and D.C. United.
What, you ask is a 4th Overall pick worth in 2013's fragile global economic landscape?
It's been a busy, and surprisingly productive, morning at RFK Stadium. Almost immediately on the heels of announcing the sale of very recently-acquired fullback/midfielder Alain Rochat to a Swiss club, D.C. United has acquired attacking midfielder Luis Silva from Toronto FC in exchange for allocation money.
In what was a shocking move to most, based on immediate reaction on social media sites, the Philadelphia Union sent Gabriel Farfan to Chivas USA in a deal that netted a potentially high draft pick in 2014 and some cash.
The Union will receive Chivas USA's natural first round selection in the 2014 Major League Soccer SuperDraft and an undisclosed amount of allocation money.
As I'm often inclined to say as an employee of both the public school system and a particularly
rowdy shore bar... it's never boring.Â If you like high drama, this year'sÂ Union isÂ the MLS team
for you.Â The average fan wouldn't have thought that Le2-gate and its attendant falloutÂ was only
the beginning of a long and crazy journey.
What a difference a week makes. The headline for last Tuesday's news roundup? "Saddest day for
me:" Sebastien Le Toux confirmed he had been traded to Vancouver a day after Faryd Mondragon's
return to Colombia was confirmed and WPS announced that it had cancelled the 2012 season.
The list of players traded in the past six months for Allocation Money should give you a bit of a sense of how much it can be worth: Alvaro Fernandez, Jamison Olave & Fabian Espindola, Ryan Johnson and lately maybe even Omar Cummings.
This Allocation Money can do magical things.
Allocation money does not count against a clubâ€™s salary budget and can be used:
To sign players new to MLS (that is, a player who did not play in MLS during the previous season).
It was only a third of the way into the press conference, but the most poignant statement of Sigi Schmid's was his answer to the question "Do you want Fredy Montero back?" Sigi's response was simple. "I want all my players back." Of course that was after 21 minutes of he and Adrian Hanauer explaining how that will not be possible.
Alvaro Fernandez has been a huge boost for the Fire. (Getty Images)
Every season I always made bold predictions and in those predictions I always have one that is pretty common from season to season. I always claim that a trade will reshape a season or at least allow one or two teams to get ahead.
Allocation money jokes rarely get old in Philadelphia.
Among the things Philadelphia Union have traded for allocation money, according to Union fans,
are hotel rooms at Harrah's, human souls, and perhaps even the MLS Cup. There's this gem: "The
Union is proud to report that the Harrisburg City Islanders have been traded to Sporting KC for
The Portland Timbers' roster makeover continued today when they acquired Ben Zemanski through a trade with Chivas USA. Portland sent allocation money and the rights to Jonathon Bornstein to Chivas for Zemanski. Zemanski plays in the midfield and played at Akron University under the Caleb Porter.
Merritt Paulson tweeted after the trade was announced that conspiracy theorists should not read too much into today's trade:
No big surprise here, but the Portland Timbers came out and confirmed that they had traded the rights for Robbie Findley to Real Salt Lake in exchange for an unknown amount of allocation money. Reports surfaced earlier in the week, however, that the amount of money exchanged between the Timbers and Salt Lake was to the tune of $75,000.
D.C. United acquired rugged defender/midfielder Brandon McDonald from the San Jose Earthquakes
today in exchange for allocation money. The 25-year old was originally drafted in 2008 by the Los
Angeles Galaxy and played 16 games for them before getting picked ...
The Portland Timbers returned to Portland after 10 days of training in Arizona to prepare for their pre-season tournament next week. While players resume the search to find roles within the team's depth chart, the Timbers are also exploring other options to solidify their group. To that end, midfielder Eric Alexander was traded to New York for allocation money in what Merritt Paulson indicated on Twitter to be a potentially busy week for player news.
Now that I'm back from my holiday travels time to get into this trade that happened at the oddest time I can remember, Sunday morning two days before Christmas. The Rapids gave up the other half of the C+C Goal Factory, Omar Cummings, in return for allocation money and Nathan Sturgis.
My first instinct is much like the Kimura trade from last year (oddly, Cummings and Kimura were roommates and were considered the Odd Couple of the team).
The New York Red Bulls have spent much of the off-season trying to trade Kenny Cooper, but finding a team with both the salary cap space to fit Cooper's significant 2013 salary, and the allocation money to give the Red Bulls.
FC Dallas became just such a team after their sale of Brek Shea, and on Monday the team that had Cooper before will have him once again after securing a trade for the big striker.
Draft day saw the Seattle Sounders pick a player who could see significant time at centerback in 2013 and was in the top four on their team draft board, but it cost them Allocation Money. Considering how tight the team is to the cap does that mean that they are done searching for new talent? The answer given in Thursday's conference call with local reporters was a long version of "No" surrounded by a lot of answers about Eriq Zavaleta and Dylan Remick and finding new players.
The Portland Timbers announced a trade today with Real Salt Lake on the eve of the 2013 MLS Super Draft, while the Portland Thorns FC learned their position amongst the eight clubs participating in the first ever NWSL College Draft on Friday, January 18. Considering how busy the Timbers have been with trades and other moves, soccer fans should expect plenty of movement.
The most recent report of out Colombia is that Fredy Montero is still a Seattle Sounders player, but will be loaned to Millonarios for 2013 with an option to buy. The report claims that Montero will join Millos on January 10th to train for the league season and the Copa Libertadores.
Sounders FC have yet to make an official statement on the long rumored deal.
Portland traded for Kimura with allocation money and today just sent him to the New York Red Bulls for Allocation money and Bryan Gallego. Gallego is a New York Academy player who currently is a sophomore at Akron University. Once again the amount of allocation money was not disclosed.
Here is what the New York Red bulls website said about Bryan:
Bryan Gallego is the U18 captain and has been with the Red Bulls Academy since 2007.
The Philadelphia Union have been very good defensively. But their success has masked a real lack
of proven depth on the back line. Both Farfan brothers and Keon Daniel have deputized on the
outside while Sheanon Williams had to slide into the middle when Califf couldn't go in
The depth issue is why reaction to the Jordan Harvey trade has been a strange mix of "whatev,"
"how could they," and "he wasn't great but he was a real left back.