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Orlando City Acquires International Roster Slot from CF Montreal

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Welcome to the club, international roster slot!

MLS: D.C. United at Orlando City SC Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

Orlando City completed a minor trade today to take a step toward 2022 roster compliance. The Lions acquired an international slot from CF Montreal for the 2022 Major League Soccer season in exchange for $200,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM) from this year’s allotment and the club’s natural third-round selection in the 2023 MLS SuperDraft. With the club having just signed Uruguayan international forward Facundo Torres and being linked to more talent from abroad, this was a necessary step.

The club freed up two international slots with the departure of Nani and with the loan of Alexander Alvarado to LDU — a move that has been announced by the Ecuadorian club but not yet by the MLS side. Those two slots were snapped up by Torres and U22 Initiative signing César Araújo.

What It Means for Orlando City

The club has been linked to two more international signings to come. Manuel Veth has reported that Austrian striker Ercan Kara — currently with Rapid Vienna — is traveling to the U.S. today to complete his medical and sign a Designated Player contract with Orlando City.

If Kara signs, today’s acquisition of an international slot from Montreal will keep the Lions roster compliant — always a good thing.

Orlando has also been linked to young Unión Santa Fe winger Gastón González from Argentina. González reportedly would be joining Orlando City after the Argentine Primera División season and arriving some time in May. That signing would give Orlando some time to free up or acquire an international slot.

The Lions have multiple players who could be working on getting their green card. Antonio Carlos, Pedro Gallese, Mauricio Pereyra, Ruan, Junior Urso, and Rodrigo Schlegel all seem likely candidates for green cards after having spent two or more seasons playing in the United States. Should any of those players receive a green card, the Lions would not need to acquire one to accommodate González. That is, of course, also contingent upon the Alvarado loan becoming official.

Other internationals who are likely not as far along in the process include Silvester van der Water and Alexandre Pato.

If $200,000 in GAM sounds like a lot of money, well it is, but it’s also in line with what other teams have paid recently to get one. Most of the recent international slots (acquired by Miami, Charlotte, Dallas, and other teams) have cost $225,000 to $250,000 in GAM but the Lions sweetened the deal with the third-round draft pick.