KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Sporting Kansas City’s fanbase was understandably upset when Montreal took hometown boy Seth Sinovic with the final pick in Wednesday’s Expansion Draft.
Manager Peter Vermes, however, approached the Impact’s selection of Sinovic far more pragmatically. Truthfully, he didn’t have a choice.
Of course, it helped that the selection was also widely expected and losing a contributor to the Expansion Draft was nothing new for Vermes, who saw Tyson Wahl, Jonathan Leathers and William Hesmer move on in previous editions. Watching his starting left back move on was unfortunate, but simply part and parcel of the MLS system.
“When you have a team that has a deep roster and get into a situation [like] the Expansion Draft, players are going to get taken,” Vermes said. “You’ve kind of got to expect that. It’s never easy when you lose a guy.
“Although Seth has been with us for a short time, we like him. At the end of the day, we have other players that can play that position as well.”
Sinovic made 20 regular-season appearances, all starts, for Kansas City in 2011 after signing with the team in May a few weeks after New England released him. He started each of Sporting’s final 18 games, including three in the playoffs.
When it comes to potential replacements, Vermes has a few options to choose from, specifically mentioning Michael Harrington - who can play both outside back positions - Roger Espinoza and Korede Aiyegbusi as left back candidates in 2012.
He also threw water on hopes voiced by many Sporting fans, confirming that the team was involved in various trade discussions but none related to bringing Sinovic back to Kansas City at this time.
That’s not to say they wouldn’t listen if Montreal wanted to sit down at the bargaining table.
“We’re open to opportunities,” Vermes said. “There are a lot of things that are flying around, not necessarily with him, but there are a lot of different situations at the moment. There’s nothing right now that’s going on. Would we be open to those things? Sure.”
From the sounds of it, though, it appears Sinovic has played his last game for Kansas City, although he could face his old team three times in 2012 should he stick in the Eastern Conference with Montreal.
“You’ve got to move on,” Vermes said.
Jéferson among those waived
In unrelated business on Wednesday, Sporting announced they had waived four players: defender Scott Lorenz and midfielders Jéferson, Craig Rocastle and Milos Stojcev.
Jéferson, who signed with Kansas City in July on loan from Vasco da Gama as the team’s second Designated Player, was the most notable name. An injury early in his stay kept the Brazilian from settling, and he only made nine appearances (eight starts, one assist) for Sporting.
Vermes said he would have liked to given Jéferson a full preseason to acclimate, but Kansas City couldn’t come to a suitable financial agreement to bring him back in 2012.
“We did like him. We think he has good qualities,” Vermes said. “It would have been nice if he could have been here for the whole year, but we just couldn’t come to an agreement on this next year. That’s basically it. It just came down to dollars and cents.”