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Exercise or Not to Exercise Options

The New York Red Bulls have made moves to keep, let go, or to renegotiate contracts for 2018

MLS: Eastern Conference Knockout Round-New York Red Bulls at Chicago Fire
Red Bulls trying to work out a new deal with Veron.
Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Just as I have reported about the permanent transfer of Michael Murillo staying with the Red Bulls, more roster moves have been made to either keep some players, cutting some players and renegotiate with some players that the Red Bulls want to allow to remain.

The moves that have been made are either positive or gut wrenching as there are players that we would love to see remain, so they can do well and improve the following year.

We start with the options that were picked up by the club as they have decided to exercise the options of Captain Sacha Kljestan, Connor Lade, Daniel Royer, Aaron Long, Sean Davis, Derrick Etienne Jr. and Evan Louro.

They have declined the options on Gonzalo Veron and Vincent Bezecourt, but Sporting Director Denis Hamlett is negotiating with both of them to get new deals so these two can stay with the club.

In my opinion it would be a foolish thing to do to let Veron go without at least having these discussions to try to keep him on a new deal, we have finally seen this man after coming over a year and a half ago play well and become a part of the attack when he is coming off the bench or in a spot starting role.

But sadly when certain players are not retained it can be a difficult time, but as always either the club has future targets they want to bring over. Or it could be someone from their USL side is going to get a chance at a roster spot.

The club has declined options on defender Sal Zizzo, midfielders Mike Grella, Dilly Duka, Dan Metzger, Zeiko Lewis and Forward Brandon Allen. These men will not return and you already know about Gideon Baah as well as Damien Perrinelle who’s contract was about to expire at the end of this season.

"We know how much we ask of our players, and these guys have all given a lot to the club during their time here. We thank them for their service, and wish them the best moving forward," said Sporting Director Denis Hamlett.

The off-season can be a feel good period, it can also be a heartbreak period. But just as I have said many times sadly that professional sports is still a business and these decisions had to be made. So we shall see what needs the club will make for the future and for 2018.

UPDATE: Just learned this past Tuesday from Kristian Dyer of Metro NY Newspaper that Mike Grella is having negotiations with Sporting Director Denis Hamlett to return with the club. After the lost season he had due to his knee surgery, it should be the right thing to do to bring back Grella who was sorely missed.