The Red Bulls may have avoided losing a player to Los Angeles Football Club in the Expansion Draft, but the MLS newcomers appear poised to grab one of the team’s stars anyways - namely, Sacha Kljestan.
According to a Metro report by Kristian Dyer, the Red Bulls and LAFC are “closing in on a deal” that would send Kljestan to the expansion side. Dyer’s report added that the Red Bulls would receive allocation money in exchange for Kljestan.
This past January the Red Bulls traded club legend and then-captain Dax McCarty to Chicago Fire in exchange for $400k in General Allocation Money, spread over two years. Kljestan was given the captain’s armband after the McCarty trade, and went on lead the MLS in assists for his second year in a row.
Dyer reported that the amount being agreed upon would be more than what the team got for McCarty this past year.
Kljestan has strong ties to the city of Los Angeles, having grown up in Huntington Beach, making his pro debut with Orange County Blue Star in 2005, and making his MLS debut with Chivas USA in 2006. He also has prior connections to LAFC manager Bob Bradley, who drafted and coached him at Chivas, then with the USMNT from 2007 to 2011.