For the second time this offseason an MLS team had to pay the Seattle Sounders allocation money to sign a Designated Player. Today the Portland Timbers signed Sebastián Blanco as a Designated Player. They were required to pay Seattle $75k in general Allocation Money.
Of note from the PTFC release: PTFC obtained Blanco's rights from the Sounders for $75k in GAM. #RCTID— Chris Rifer (@ChrisRifer) February 2, 2017
Normally that would only be $50k for a mere Discovery Claim, but since the Sounders tried to sign Blanco at one point and were unable to do so they maintained his MLS rights for four transfer windows, unless another team negotiated with them.
Blanco is the second DP winger from South America that required another MLS side to pay Seattle money. When Atlanta United signed Miguel Almiron they sent $50k to the Sounders (Update: We’ve been told the Sounders actually got $75,000 for Almiron’s rights).
President of Soccer Garth Lagerwey is clearly targeting South America for most of his signings. We have proof that Almiron, Blanco, and Lodeiro were all scouted by Seattle and Seattle intended them to be Sounders first.
Considering the rumored signings from South America over the past year or so included Oscar Romero (who Atlanta nearly acquired) and Dario Benedetto (who it seems is an LA target) there’s a chance that other players on Sounders FC’s Discovery List will net the club more allocation money in the future.
It also seems like an MLS team that doesn’t want to spend money on scouting can just find who the Sounders don’t sign and then sign the secondary targets of Lagerwey. Allocation Money is cheaper than paying a scout’s salary and travel costs.