The transfer window is open and head coach Jay Heaps has stated that team officials are open to all avenues in regards to player acquisition. While the foreign market is generally the place to look when aiming to make a big splash, teams can also orchestrate trades within MLS as a way of bringing in players. Trades are a rarity in this league, but I’ve come up with four that could aid the New England Revolution.
When writing this article, I tried to keep it realistic and think of trades that would benefit both teams, as well as the players. I also only considered player-for-player trades, though other incentives could be added. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the list.
Jerry Bengtson for Will Bruin
Bengtson hasn’t worked in New England, but I’m still convinced that he’s a good player. Similarly, Bruin has been one of the streakiest individuals in MLS since joining the Houston Dynamo in 2011. Both the Revs and the Dynamo are struggling right now and a straight striker swap might be the cure.
A move to Texas would reunite Bengtson with fellow Hondurans Oscar Boniek Garcia and Alexander Lopez. Bengtson would also benefit from the service of Brad Davis and the movement of Giles Barnes and Andrew Driver.
Conversely, a change of scenery might be good for Bruin, who has two caps for the US national team. Bruin is a big, strong forward who can get behind defenses and cause headaches for goalkeepers. The Revs play a different brand of soccer than Bruin has encountered in the past, which might cause him to evolve into a better-rounded player.
Other Players to Consider: CJ Sapong, Claudio Bieler, Kenny Cooper, Conor Doyle
Stephen McCarthy for Nigel Reo-Coker
The Revs need a defensive midfielder, especially considering the news that Andy Dorman will miss 10-12 weeks with a sprained MCL, and Reo-Cocker might be that guy. More than a talented player, Reo-Coker has a wealth of experience that would be valuable to the Revolution’s young core.
Reo-Coker has captained English clubs Wimbledon FC, Aston Villa, Bolton Wanderers and West Ham United. At 30 years old, he still has something left to offer, but it appears that Vancouver isn’t the best location for him. Half a season in New England should be enough to determine if Reo-Coker is a long- or short-term solution.
McCarthy was the Revolution’s Defender of the Year in 2012, but he’s only seen league action once this season. He’s a hard-nosed defender that can serve as a starter or a supplemental piece. With an average goals against average of 1.42, Vancouver hasn’t exactly had the stingiest defense in MLS. With this in mind, they would certainly be happy to add such a serviceable player.
Other Players to Consider: Andy Rose, Adam Moffat, Antonio Dovale
Jose Goncalves for Justin Mapp
Mapp is a having a renaissance this year, but the Montreal Impact might be willing to trade him in order to gain a player that can shore up the back line. It would be difficult to send away the team captain, but Mapp is the type of player that the Revs need.
Typically operating from the wing, Mapp has the creativity and speed to unlock defenses, which is something that the Revs have had difficulty with in recent weeks. Although he doesn’t have a goal this year, he has played provider quite well as evident by his seven assists.
After a sensational first year in MLS, Goncalves has been lackluster in 2014, which might mean that it’s time for Andrew Farrell to make a permanent move to center back. Matteo Ferrari and Heath Pearce have formed a decent partnership in Montreal, but Goncalves would be an upgrade if he’s able to regain the magic of last season.
Other Players to Consider: Sal Zizzo, Benji Joya, Alex, Michel
Darrius Barnes for Ryan Meara
Both Revolution goalkeepers have had shaky moments which could prompt a trade for a true number one. Meara is younger than both Bobby Shuttleworth and Brad Knighton, but he did have an impressive 2012 in which he went 9-5-4.
Meara status as a first-choice goalkeeper with the New York Red Bulls went into question after he sustained a season-ending hip surgery on August 23rd. When he returned to full health, Luis Robles had firmly entrenched himself between the sticks. Meara is a good goalkeeper that is a need of an opportunity and the Revolution might be the team that to provide it.
Barnes played every minute of every game during his rookie year, but has found it difficult to get on the field since then. The Red Bulls would surely appreciate Barnes’ versatility as they have had difficulties naming full-time defensive starters.
Other Players to Consider: Joe Willis, Jeff Attinella
Suggestions from Twitter
@SethMan31 Jerry to the Crew for Tony Tchani. The Crew needs strikers and we could dump Jerry while picking up much needed CDM depth.— Christopher Brown (@cbrown4747) July 22, 2014
@SethMan31 Soares/Knighton for Meara/low level draft pick.— Adam Sell (@ajvsell) July 22, 2014
@SethMan31 Soares + allocation money for Justin Mapp.— Revs Citizen (@Revs_Citizen) July 22, 2014