Looks like the New York Red Bulls are looking to address their needs at the back.
The New York Post's Brian Lewis is reporting the Red Bulls are close to inking a deal with Damien Perrinelle, one of the three trialists brought on at the beginning of the month.
Perrinelle, 30, spent most of his career in the French second division, and trialed with the team last winter, though most of the first team was on vacation at the time.
Sporting director Andy Roxburgh, from Lewis' story...
"This lad can play right fullback or a centerback. He can play there. He's a good player, a very good player. He's technically very good, so that's why we're giving him [a chance]. He's a good player on the ball. He's talented with the ball at his feet and he's technically very good.''
If Roxburgh's assessment is right, Perrinelle could be the sort of defender the Red Bulls lost with Markus Holgersson's departure. And if he doesn't start, his ability to play right back could give the Red Bulls a bit of extra defensive fortitude when trying to hold down a lead.
As for Perrinelle's winter trial, it seemed more a quick meeting with the team, rather than anything amounting to a real test. Roxburgh via Lewis again...
"[Perrinelle] was here on day just before Christmas because he happened to be in New York. He came for one day, and that's because Gerard [Houllier, Red Bull director of global football] knew him, so he came into see us,'' Roxburgh said. "Gerard knows him well, and he's the one that triggered this. He played in the first and second division in France.
It's also worth noting that Perrinelle has a bit of a thing going on for MLS. So if nothing else can be said about the player, he wants to be here.
This signing isn't likely to be the one most fans have been hoping for, after all, they were tantalized by the prospect of DaMarcus Beasley inking a deal just yesterday, and Xavi has been playing a will-he-or-won't-he game with both the Red Bulls and NYCFC for months.
But the fact of the matter is the Red Bulls are in a tough place. They brought MLS veterans -- the kind of players who don't come cheap -- on to bolster the squad's depth, but none have worked out. As we've pointed out, there's over $800,000 tied up in out-of-favor players, meaning there's little to spend on reinforcements.
What this means for Matt Miazga is still an open question. Miazga has had his issues, but his upside is huge. If they stick with him, fans will have to deal with the growing pains, but will see a legitimate national team prospect develop in front of them. If they go with Perrinelle, it could possibly give the defense the shot in the arm it needs to stop leaking goals.