In what seems to be an ongoing trend, the Seattle Sounders have managed to collect allocation money from someone else’s player signing. This time, they’re reportedly getting $100,000 in General Allocation Money from Nashville SC for the discovery rights to former German youth international Hany Mukhtar. The 24-year-old currently plays for Denmark’s Brondby and would join Nashville ahead of their debut MLS season in 2020.
Sounder at Heart has learned that the Sounders were close to signing Mukhtar ahead of the 2018 season, with a transfer fee and contract terms all agreed. The Sounders apparently saw Mukhtar as a longterm replacement for Clint Dempsey, more of a withdrawn forward than a classic No. 10.
At the time, though, Mukhtar was in the midst of his best-ever season. By the start of March 2018, he had already scored eight goals and had seven assists during the Danish Superliga campaign and would finish with 11 goals and 13 assists in 36 appearances. Still just a few years removed from making his Bundesliga debut as an 18-year-old and a four-goal performance at the 2015 U20 World Cup, Mukhtar apparently decided he wasn’t quite ready to leave Europe.
As it turned out, Mukhtar’s decision may have worked out well for the Sounders. They had targeted Mukhtar well before Jordan Morris’ injury and the decision to move Nicolas Lodeiro to the center of the park. The money that had planned to spend on Mukhtar was instead used to sign Raúl Ruidíaz, who has already scored 23 goals in 33 MLS matches.
It’s unclear if Mukhtar continued to be a Sounders target after that, but the $100,000 GAM payment is more than they received for Miguel Almiron ($50,000) in 2016 or Sebastian Blanco ($75,000) in 2017 and Nico Gaitan ($50,000) earlier this year.