The ongoing transfer speculation surrounding DeAndre Yedlin has officially come to a close, with the Seattle Sounders announcing Wednesday that terms have been finalized for Yedlin to make a move to Tottenham Hotspur.
In a teleconference with reporters on Wednesday afternoon, Seattle general manager Adrian Hanauer explained a few specifics regarding the transaction and the club’s thinking as the rumors surrounding Yedlin stacked up following his coming out party on the international stage at the 2014 World Cup.
“This transaction provides, first, a great opportunity for us to win a championship in 2014 with DeAndre remaining with the team,” Hanauer said. “Second, it provides us with allocation money that is paramount to maintaining a competitive squad going forward.”
“We’re in a sport where this happens,” added Hanauer. “Every club in the world sells players. It’s just a question of weighing the benefits and the drawbacks and we ultimately decided that this was a good decision for us.”
The reported $4 million transfer fee for Yedlin would be the most ever for a Homegrown player. While the Sounders did not confirm that number on Wednesday, MLS teams transferring homegrown players keep 75 percent of the transfer fee.
Hanauer confirmed that Yedlin’s move to Tottenham would not overlap with this MLS season, although when the transfer will take place is yet to be determined. Hanauer left open the possibility that Yedlin could stay in Seattle longer, potentially until June 2015, depending on a variety of factors including Tottenham’s needs at the end of the MLS schedule, and whether Yedlin can secure an overseas work permit.
Hanauer said his impression is that Tottenham would like to evaluate the situation at the end of the MLS season and make the decision on when Yedlin will join the squad at that time.
“We’ve had conversations about it and [the transfer will happen] certainly no earlier than the transfer window at the end of our season,” Hanauer said. “The intent was that they would like to assess where things are at with their club at that time and potential work permit issues with DeAndre and assess how he’s been doing with us and whether it’s the right time to fit him into their squad.”
The difficulty in securing work permits has been an obstacle for MLS players attempting overseas transfers in the past, but Hanauer said the deal is sealed despite the potential complications that may arise from the issue.
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“It’s a done deal,” Hanauer said. “I can’t speculate as to what potentially could happen with a work permit challenge. … But it’s a done deal.”
Hanauer also said that Yedlin’s own desire to try himself on the English Premier League stage played into the decision-making process.
“DeAndre clearly wanted this transaction to occur as well because he certainly has a say in it,” Hanauer said. “We want to do right by our players in addition to doing right by our club…
"Ultimately all the credit has to go to DeAndre, who has been humble and honest, hard-working, a great teammate and dedicated to improving day in and day out on the field.”