With little news in the Obafemi Martins saga, besides club posturing, Adrian Hanauer recently indicated that the deal is close to the finish line, but not yet complete. "If we can't [complete the deal] we'll go to Plan B." But with rumors circling the Seattle Sounders for months it is hard to tell if Martins was actually Plan A anyway.
Martins, Saviola, Metzelder, Vietto, Verdu (too many to link), numerous Hondurans, Valdez, Benayoun and who knows who else. The fact is that Seattle is regularly linked to players. Many of these may just be plays by an agent and/or player to get a better deal where they are at now. Few are ever confirmed to have interest from the Starfire offices. But they indicate some directions for Plan B (or G, or whatever). Not to mention the activity of Seattle in trading within MLS (Joseph, Neagle).
If the Martins deal is dead (it may or may not be) what direction should Hanauer look?
There is still plenty of talent left in La Liga on poor teams that can't afford their players. This is clearly an opportunity for Seattle and one that they are mining. Players from bottom dwellers like Deportiva La Coruna, Mallorca, Celta de Viga and Real Zaragoza will shortly be threatened with getting cut. Many of these are scoring at decent rates and fit the mold that the Sounders seem to be following. There are dozens of intriguing names, but only one needs to hit. Flashing 10 to 15 million total around for Martins could draw interest from a team and player.
Maybe Hanauer & Co dip back down into the Argentine youth ranks. These are less known, but South American youth DPs are possible. Portland nearly had one (they still got the player). Dallas has one. Toronto seems likely to get one. Seattle is not forced to play in this space for cap reasons, but still could choose to do so to make their team better now and later.
They could always wait until the Summer Window as well. Many more players will be for sale, but they would be playing with the biggest of the big boys. It will be nearly impossible to make a value buy at that time. This would also put Seattle down by however many points you think a DP forward is worth to the team. This variant on standing pat has a risk of creating a hole too large for the Sounders to be a Playoff threat.
Probably the biggest risk would be swinging for another trade within MLS. The list of DPs being shopped around is not long. It may only be Freddy Adu. His large contract, his rumored attitude and his long list of moves and failures make this the least likely of any option. But it is an option. DPs do get dealt. Philly certainly wants to be rid of him. But does Sigi really need another reclamation project after Johnson and now Joseph?
Plan B does not seem like a long list. Until you realize that there about a dozen players that make some kind of sense from Spain, another dozen+ from Argentina and of course there are other less likely options.
The team has time by rule. But should they take it?