Decision made on trialists, but Petke keeping his mouth shut

Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

A decision has been made on the trialists brought into camp, but Mike Petke ain't saying who's staying and who's going.

The New York Red Bulls brain trust has made a decision on the three trialits -- Damien Perrinelle, Diego Sousa Xavier and Martin Woods -- brought into camp last week, but Head Coach Mike Petke isn't saying who's staying and who's going quite yet.

In his weekly conference calls with the media, Petke said signing a new player wasn't a simple "if you like him, sign him" type decision.

"We have a full roster with a full maxed out salary cap. So it doesn't just go into, you like a player you're going to sign him, it goes into you like a player, you'd like to sign him, but what moves do we have to make to sign this player.

"So all that goes into it. Obviously these players need to know, so they're going to know very shortly."

Petke and the Red Bulls staff evaluated the three during a scrimmage between the Red Bulls reserves and the Red Bulls' U-23 squad.

But the salary cap restrictions will hurt anyone who impressed yesterday. And it's easy to get hamstrung by the salary cap when you're spending more than $800,000 on bit part players and guys who can't even crack the game day roster.

With Perrinelle and Woods' backgrounds -- playing in Ligue 2 and the English Championship, respectively -- it's hard to imagine them signing, as their salary requirements will likely be too high. For example, Lloyd Sam and Bradley Wright-Phillips, two players brought over from the English lower leagues, both get paid in excess of $100,000 (Wright-Phillips makes $330,000 guaranteed). France is a less lucrative place to ply one's trade, but it can't be that much worse the England, and that's ignoring Matt Miazga's emergence at centerback.

That leaves Sousa Xavier, who the Red Bulls can likely pick up for relatively cheap. Based simply on some YouTube scouting, he seems to have technical ability, but that's nothing unless the 5'6", 149 pound central midfielder can deal with the physical nature of MLS.

That ignores, of course, the possibility the Red Bulls could move one of their underachieving MLS vets. Guys like Bobby Convey, Richard Eckersley, Kosuke Kimura, Armando and Jonny Steele are all making in excess of $100,000 and hardly see the field (and when they do, it's not pretty). If they could find a buyer, it's possible they make a move. But who would take them?

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