The Chicago Fire turned heads across Major League Soccer late Monday, completing a trade with the New York Red Bulls to acquire their captain and midfield anchor Dax McCarty for a whopping $400,000 in general allocation money.
In a shocking development first reported by FourFourTwo USA and officially announced by the clubs shortly afterwards, the Red Bulls have parted ways with McCarty, a 2015 MLS Best XI honoree and one of the league's most consistent defensive midfielders, after six seasons of distinguished service.
The Florida native, who previously played for D.C. United and FC Dallas, leaves New York with 14 goals and 27 assists over 169 regular-season games, plus a goal and an assist in 17 postseason matches. He joins a Fire squad that has already acquired midfielder Juninho, striker Nemanja Nikolic and goalkeeper Jorge Rodrigo Bava this winter.
The transaction sees RBNY receive $200,000 in 2017 allocation funds and $200,000 for 2018. McCarty’s contract is guaranteed through the 2017 season, and the Fire hold options for the following two seasons.
“Since the middle of 2016, we made acquiring Dax our No. 1 priority,” said Fire general manager Nelson Rodriguez in a club release. “In order to do so, we had to exchange worthy and appropriate compensation. We believe adding his character and leadership in the locker room, as well as his exceptional soccer abilities on the field, dramatically improves our team.”
McCarty got married in the Orlando area on Saturday before jetting to Los Angeles to join the US national team's January camp, his first international call-up in three years.