TRANSFER TRACKER: Re-signed
D.C. United officially announced on Friday that the club and Gressel have agreed to a long-term three-year guaranteed contract with a club option for the fourth year using Allocation Money, keeping Gressel under contract with the Black and Red through the 2023 MLS season.
"Agreeing to a long-term deal with Julian is a big step for our club as we continue to build a highly competitive roster in MLS," said D.C. United GM and VP of soccer operations Dave Kasper in a statement. "He is a young and extremely talented player who has already achieved a great amount in this league, and we’re excited to lock down his future with D.C. United.
“I’m excited to commit my future to the Black-and-Red and look forward to the beginning of a fruitful tenure in the nation’s capital," said Gressel. "D.C. United are a historic club in this league and I’m hoping that I can contribute to helping the team push towards bringing the MLS Cup back to the District and adding that fifth star to our kit. I can’t wait to get started and I’m eager to see the fans at Audi Field on Feb. 29 as we kickoff the season against Colorado. Vamos United!”
D.C. United have locked down Julian Gressel, signing one of their marquee offseason acquisitions to a four-year contract, per Thursday reports from The Washington Post and The Athletic's Sam Stejskal.
Source tells me that Julian Gressel’s new deal with D.C. United is done. Signed. Average of around $700k per year for three years, with an option for a fourth in 2023. Was previously reported as verbally agreed upon.— Sam Stejskal (@samstejskal) February 20, 2020
According to the report from the Post's Steven Goff, full financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed, but the contract includes one club-held option and will use Targeted Allocation Money.
"It's been a long time," Gressel told Goff. "It was a difficult season mentally at times — very difficult for me last year. Being traded relieved some of that because I knew something was going to happen with the contract here. It's been different [this week] not having to think about it and not having to call my agent every day."
While expected, the move officially locks down what DCU hope will be a game-changing piece as they look ahead to 2020.
Gressel was one of the most effective wide players in the league during his tenure with Atlanta United, racking up 15 goals and an eye-popping 35 assists in 88 starts since his 2017 MLS Rookie of the Year-winning campaign, and is extremely versatile, able to slot in as an attacking right back or higher up the field. He put up six goals and 12 assists in 33 games for Atlanta last season.