Fret no longer, Revs fans. José Gonçalves will be back to marshal the backline come 2014.
On Friday, New England announced it had exercised 2014 contract options on 11 players, most notably Gonçalves, midfielder Lee Nguyen and forward Jerry Bengtson, bringing their roster to 15 with the offseason beginning to build steam.
Twelve other players were either waived or had their options declined, including goalkeeper Matt Reis and forward Charlie Davies. Three more are out of contract.
“After every season, we have to take a hard look at our roster and make some very difficult decisions, both for personnel and salary budget considerations,” Revolution general manager Michael Burns said in a statement. “In our case, we’ll continue discussions with some of the out-of-contract and declined-option players in the hope they will return to the club next year.”
In the case of Gonçalves, one of the front-runners for MLS Defender of the Year, the club also exercised the purchase option on his loan from FC Sion and permanently transferred him to New England in addition to exercising the 2014 option in his MLS contract.
The Revs also picked up the contract options on goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth; defenders Stephen McCarthy, A.J. Soares and O’Brian Woodbine; midfielders Scott Caldwell and Andy Dorman; and forwards Dimitry Imbongo and Saer Sene.
Among those who had their 2014 contract options declined were forward Chad Barrett, midfielder Ryan Guy, defender Tyler Polak, midfielder Clyde Simms, midfielder Donnie Smith, goalkeeper Luis Soffner and midfielder Juan Toja. Defender Bilal Duckett, forward Matt Horth and midfielder Gabe Latigue were waived and will be available to other MLS teams in the Waiver Draft on Monday.
Meanwhile, three players are out of contract heading into the 2014 season: forward Juan Agudelo, whose move to Stoke City broke down this week after his work-permit appeal was denied, defender Kevin Alston and defender Darrius Barnes.
Four players are already under contract for the 2014 season: midfielder Diego Fagundez, defender Andrew Farrell, midfielder Kelyn Rowe and defender Chris Tierney.
“We’ve been steadily adding pieces to our club and after showing some improvement this year, we’ve retained a core group of players for next season,” Burns said. “We’ll continue to try to strengthen the team this off-season through more signings and the various drafts.”