Is Alvaro Fernandez going to ply his trade in Italy for Palermo? If the price is right, of course he is.
Every single agent should say that their player, particularly one of Alvaro Fernandez' quality, is interested in playing for Palermo, a team in a better league for more money. That Fernandez' agent did so is not a surprise. Palermo is a mid-table team in Serie A this season already on its third coach. They fired one in preseason and another just under two weeks ago. The club holds four Uruguay players and seven other Latino players. They are clearly used to working with this agent. Automated translation of the Goal.com article does make it seem like there is an ongoing negotiation with a decision date just prior to Seattle Sounders FC's preseason opening, but is dependent on agreeable terms. Fernandez is under contract so there would be a fee going to Seattle if MLS and the Sounders agree to the move.
For fans that want Seattle to make a huge splashy signing there is a requirement that the club open a Designated Player slot as it is likely that even if Mauro Rosales is not a DP there would only be room for a Youth DP. Fernandez finished 2011 as the team's second leading scorer (11 goals all competitions) and tied for fifth in assists (5 all comps) while playing in the third most games (39, 31 were starts). With Steve Zakuani's future in question a loss of Fernandez would be significant. When Zakuani is fully fit Alvaro is likely to be used as a super-utility man starting every game, but moving across the attacking midfield roles.
MLS teams with good players on the fringes of strong national teams will always deal with constant transfer rumors. While this one is not strong highly dependent on salary and other terms. It offers the flexibility to to Hanauer & Co to the entire world of players up for a potential replacement signing. Losing Flaco would also be the least damaging of any loss among a core player.