CHICAGO – FC Cincinnati were offered a strong package by LAFC for the No. 1 overall selection in the 2019 MLS SuperDraft on Friday before turning them down to select UCLA midfielder Frankie Amaya, sources told MLSsoccer.com.
The sources said that LAFC offered $200,000 in combined General Allocation Money and Targeted Allocation Money for the No. 1 selection. Cincinnati declined and asked LAFC for $500,000 in combined GAM and TAM – with no international slot – for the pick. LAFC turned them down, and Cincinnati drafted Amaya (pictured above with FCC brass).
Sources told MLSsoccer.com prior to the start of the SuperDraft that LAFC were among several teams interested in the top pick but that it would’ve taken a steep price to pry it from Cincinnati. The sources said that FCC always planned to draft Amaya if they held onto the top pick. The sources said that Cincinnati have no intention of moving Amaya within MLS, but they said there’s a chance he could be sent on loan – potentially to Mexico – for parts of 2019.
The sources also added that Cincinnati are closing in on finalizing a previously reported deal for Chilean playmaker Matias Fernandez. His acquisition from Liga MX club Necaxa could become official early next week.
Other sources told MLSsoccer.com that Colorado were one of the other teams interested in acquiring the top pick from Cincinnati, but that talks never got serious between the Rapids and FCC. Colorado ended up drafting University of Denver forward Andre Shinyashiki, who trained with the Rapids in stretches last summer, with the fifth overall selection.
FC Cincinnati later selected Wake Forest defender Logan Gdula with the 13th overall selection. After sending the No. 16 and No. 25 picks to the New York Red Bulls for $100,000 in GAM, the expansion club hold the 29th, 30th and 37th picks in Friday’s portion of the draft.