Sporting Kansas City fans expecting a splash signing during the summer transfer window which opened on July 8 might be disappointed. Then again, those fearing the club might sell two more stars at midseason might not see those fears realized.
Manager Peter Vermes already has said he likes his club's chances of holding onto center back Matt Besler and winger Graham Zusi after their World Cup stints with the US national team. With both still under contract, the final decision on their futures rest with Sporting– and the club isn't looking to sell, Vermes said.
“Logically, it makes a lot of sense to know sooner than later, because then you don't have as much time within the window to try to find what it is you're looking for and what you want,” he told reporters during a conference call. “But I don't really feel it's much of an issue at the moment.”
And while the defending MLS Cup champs have cap room and resources, Vermes said, they're looking to make their biggest acquisitions in the offseason.
“We're not trying to go crazy in the [summer] window,” he said. “We don't need to. We don't think we need to, although we do have some injuries and things like that. We do need to add a few players here and there, but our intention is to make sure that we maintain a very, very good position going into the winter window, the start of 2015. We want to make sure that our cap, our position financially is a very strong one.”
New York City FC and Orlando City SC both will enter MLS in 2015, meaning existing clubs could take a double hit in the expansion draft. Additionally, a new collective bargaining agreement with the players' union will be in place before next season.
“We want to make sure that we're extremely prepared for that,” Vermes said. “We have two first-round draft picks this upcoming year. Those are moves we made in light of what was coming this upcoming year.”
Vermes has said there will be multiple signings this summer, though, and Sporting made the first on Tuesday when they acquired defensive midfielder Michael Kafari – a third-round pick for Vancouver in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft – from USL PRO side Charleston Battery.
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“He's definitely going to be more of a future kid, somebody we're going to spend some time with and see how he fits in,” Vermes said. “But he has some qualities that we like.”
An international acquisition has also been made, Vermes said, but has not yet been announced.
“I would say it's still probably next week, based on paperwork.”
Steve Brisendine covers Sporting Kansas City for MLSsoccer.com.