The 2019 season has come to an end for FC Dallas but the offseason leading into the 2020 season is just getting started.
Let’s look at every player who had their contract options exercised or declined by Dallas earlier this week.
Many FC Dallas fans were likely disappointed to see Badji’s name fall under the exercised list instead of the declined list but the Senegalese forward only makes $200,000 in a season. This makes him not only a relatively cheap depth piece that can lead the line or play on the wing, but also makes him a potentially attractive trade piece if Dallas wanted to test the market for him and see what kind of value they could get in return for Badji, though it seems more likely that Badji will be a part of the Dallas squad in 2020.
Barrios is still FCD’s most effective attacker and with 5 goals and 15 assists in 2019, his $500,000 salary feels like a bit of a steal. Exercising Barrios’ option is a complete no-brainer for the Dallas front office.
Reggie is one of a few players who are still on incredibly low contracts for the value provided for the team. Reggie has reportedly turned down offers from the club for a new contract to raise his $80,250 salary. This makes Reggie a likely candidate for a potential move abroad in the off-season. With FCD’s transition into a development club, it won’t be surprising to see homegrown players regularly sold on in transfer windows and Reggie seems most likely to be that homegrown in the winter transfer window.
Similar to Cannon, 18-year-old Ferreira is on an incredibly low contract, especially given that he was the club’s leading scorer in 2019. Ferreira made $70,250 in 2019, among the lowest on the roster. After a new deal given to Paxton Pomykal, Ferreira will almost certainly be next in line to get a big raise, don’t be surprised to see that happen either in this off-season or during the summer of 2020.
After a very promising 2018 season, Hayes’ role in the squad was diminished a bit in 2019. That being said, he makes under $80,000 annually, as a highly competent back-up midfielder that is capable of playing multiple roles in midfield, it really makes exercising his option an obvious choice for the FCD front office. Even if he isn’t in the plans for 2020, his contract makes him an appealing option in the trade market.
Hedges is one of the best center backs in the league, has spent his entire career with Dallas and is essentially a club legend at this point in time. Dallas should do whatever they can to make sure that Matt retires as a one-club player. Exercising his option is an obvious decision and getting him a contract extension should also be on the cards in the near future.
Maurer is a keeper that could likely start for a solid number of MLS clubs. For a back-up goalkeeper, $125,000 in salary may seem a bit high, but Maurer has regularly been able to step in and play at a very high level when called upon and with Jesse Gonzalez potentially getting to the point of his career where he may be looking to make a move away from Dallas, Maurer is invaluable to have as the second string keeper ready to step into the starting role if needed.
The Canadian first-round pick in the 2019 SuperDraft spent the entirety of the 2019 season playing with North Texas SC but at $70,250 in annual salary, he makes a lot of sense to have his option exercised for an extra season as a depth option who needs further development. Chances are he will get one more season to prove he deserves a bigger contract that goes beyond 2020.
Reynolds joins Ferreira and Cannon in the group of homegrown players who will be needing a contract extension and a raise in short order. Reynolds hasn’t had the impact on the senior team that Cannon and Ferreira have had, the 17-year-old winger and full-back spent most of 2019 playing for North Texas SC, but he seems to be Cannon’s heir apparent at right-back and will push for more playing time with the senior team in 2020. FCD will have to pony up the money soon if they want to keep him around past 2020, though there are few indications that they wouldn’t be interested in doing so.
Similar to Maurer, Zobeck is a quality member of the squad when his role is considered. As a third-string keeper, no one would expect him to be making a lot of money, and he makes barely above the minimum, coming in at just above $70,000 in annual salary. However, Zobeck knows the coaching staff, knows the club and seems comfortable in a mentorship role going forward. If Jesse Gonzalez was to be moved on in the near future, he would also make for a suitable backup to Jimmy Maurer.
Options Declined/Out of Contract
The Cristian Colmán era in Dallas comes to a sad and fitting end with Colmán unceremoniously having his contract option declined for 2020. The Paraguayan forward didn’t make a single appearance for Dallas in 2019, spending most of the year rehabbing from his ACL tear during the 2018 season. When he did return, he made some appearances for North Texas SC, failing to score or assist on a goal. By all accounts, Colmán is a wonderful person and as a player, he did so much right, he just couldn’t put the ball in the net. Hopefully, Colmán can get his career back on a track in a new location but Dallas certainly won’t mind shedding his $500,000 salary.
Another $500,000+ in salary off the books with the declined option for Edwin Gyasi. Gyasi was on loan from CSKA Sofia, so in this case, the declined option likely simply means Dallas refused to pick up the option to buy his contract from the Bulgarian club. Gyasi was the single summer transfer window signing for the club in 2019 and was a massive miss, only playing in a handful of games and providing no meaningful or memorable moments, other than when he was subbed out against Orlando due to an apparent injury…before returning to training two days later.
After being re-signed in the summer of 2018, Hernandez has spent the majority of his time back with FC Dallas on loan to San Antonio FC. He had a brief time to establish himself on the roster in the 2019 preseason but failed to impress enough to convince Luchi Gonzalez to keep him around the senior squad, so it is no surprise to see the front office decline his option and shed his $90,000 salary. Expect Moises to sign a permanent deal with San Antonio, or elsewhere in USL Championship.
Alexander is the sole player who is simply out of a contract. He was brought in on waivers following his release from FC Cincinnati and was pretty clearly intended to be a body in practice and impart some veteran wisdom on the young players in midfield and throughout the team. No surprise at all to see that there are no plans for his return in 2020.
What do you think about the initial offseason moves? Any surprises? Are you disappointed with any of the players that were kept around or let go? Sound off in the comments below!
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