According to Ives Galarcep, who runs the eponymous site Soccer By Ives, NYCFC offered a bevy of allocation cash in exchange for goalkeeper Ryan Meara.
I'm hearing NYCFC offer for Ryan Meara was $300K in allocation. Huge chunk of allocation to turn down. RBNY have long-term plans for Meara— Ives Galarcep (@SoccerByIves) December 8, 2014
Meara grew up in Yonkers, played at Fordham, and is the son of a New York firefighter, so he'd be a nice local face for the team, whether he starts or not (Josh Saunders is the only keeper currently on the roster, and most recently helped the San Antonio Scorpions win the NASL Soccer Bowl and has a fair amount of MLS experience).
The Red Bulls were loath to let go of Meara, which would essentially give their local rivals some help in their so-far disastrous attempt to build their own identity. Meara is also protected in this afternoon's expansion draft.
But there's somewhere I've seen this trade before... in the most recent incarnation of Football Manager.
For those who don't know, NYCFC and Orlando City were included in Football Manager 2015 and they've even added the expansion draft. True to life, the two teams can trade and sign players ahead of their MLS debuts.
Funny enough, I took this screenshot in October. I've had odd things happen before in Football Manager -- I had one game with Hibernian where I was offered Lloyd Sam, Kenny Cooper and Sebastian Le Toux, all three of who had played for the Red Bulls in the real life season before, but were out of contract or otherwise available in-game -- but I'm not sure I've had Football Manager predict the future. Unless Clint Mathis buys the team around 2017.
Let's hope this trend doesn't hold up and that Galarcep's sources confused the game and real life, or else the Red Bulls are going to lose a bunch of games 1-0 next season season despite taking 30 shots and having 70 percent possession.