Over at SNY, Brendan Joseph has posted a thoughtful piece on the New York Red Bulls' transfer policy. It makes the point that RBNY appears to be following the same acquisitions strategy as Brothers Leipzig and Salzburg: the strategy preferred by the the man largely responsible for the Red Bull Global Soccer blueprint, Ralf Rangnick.
One aspect of the Red Bull way with regard to signing players is Rangnick's famous aversion to picking up older players - one that made the news recently when it was revealed the Leipzig boss turned down the chance to pick up Leicester City's Jamie Vardy.
The existence of this policy is routinely ignored by the rumor mill, at least with regard to the New York edition of the Red Bull Global Soccer masterplan. Big-name player over 30 looking for a final payday? MLS is an essential part of any transfer rumor cycle for a player of that profile, and RBNY remains a regular feature of that cycle. But, as Mr. Joseph points out for SNY, the greater likelihood is the Red Bulls will stick to the plan of developing their stars rather than buying them.
Still, there are players of such talent and fame that they might tempt even a team like RBNY into compromising its principles. And since RBNY only acquired its current principles in 2015, they might be relatively easily compromised - for the right player.
One such player has to be Zlatan Ibrahimovic. And yes, he has already been loosely connected with RBNY as part of the interminable speculation about the identity of his next club. The Red Bulls are by no means favorites to sign Zlatan, but MLS has repeatedly been reported as a possible destination for the big Swede.
And RBNY does occasionally drift into the conversation about where Ibrahimovic might want to settle if he moved to North America. As recently as last month, Ibra was linked to RBNY - by the Detroit Red Wings' Johan Franzen.
But the rumor mill appears to be cooling on the notion of Zlatan playing in America. Most recently and persuasively, Ibra's agent - Mino Raiola - is reported to have told Italian GQ that his client might head back to Serie A (where he played for Juventus and Inter), specifically to Milan.
Farewell, Zlatan-to-MLS rumor. Or rather, arrivederci: 'til we meet again.