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July 11, 2013 at 12:11 PM

Sounders GM says Montero transfer is ‘very, very close,’ Seattle unlikely to get allocation

A report out of Portugal this morning have suggested the business side of Fredy Montero’s transfer to Sporting Lisbon is done. Sounders FC general manager Adrian Hanauer spoke about the subject to reporters after Thursday’s practice:

*     *     *

(Reports out of Portugal are that the Fredy Montero transfer is done. Is there any update you can provide?) “It’s very, very close, and we’ll announce it when it’s 100-percent done.”

(Has there been any clarity as to whether you’ll get allocation money in the move?) “Nothing official, but it appears unlikely that we will get allocation out of the deal.”

(Why?) “The way the rules work.”

(Is that tough to swallow or do you write it off and move on?) “The way the rules have been structured in the past, there would have been almost no chance of getting allocation money. It’s only a slight nuance to the rule that, to be honest, I’m not sure is something that’s even been publicly disseminated that might have given us some hope. So I was never particularly confident that we would get allocation money, and I think it’s just becoming a little more clear that we’ll likely not get allocation money. But as the deal gets, if it’s not allocation money it’s cash, which we’re able to convert into the product, as well.”

(So this isn’t really a surprise to you? You didn’t come into the transfer window thinking you’d get a bump in allocation money?) “No. That was not a factor in our decision making.”

(Is there anything you can tell us about retention funds or if you’ve used it?) “Probably not at this time. Just like we don’t talk about contracts, we don’t talk about length of contracts, we don’t talk about salaries, we don’t talk about loan fees, we don’t talk about how we use allocation money, we probably also won’t talk about the use of the retention funds. And again, as the league evolves, my hunch is that some of these concepts will become more and more transparent. You can ask me again in a week or two or three, but I’m sort of toeing the company line and not getting into specifics about some of those things.”

(How does MLS balance fans wanting to know what’s going on and not being comfortable telling the details on these things?) “Yeah, it’s a tough balance, and I am empathetic to the frustration that some fans can feel. But the other side of the coin is privately owned companies have different reporting systems than publicly traded companies, for instance. I hope that over time we become more transparent, because I think it will be good for the fans, but it’s not going to happen overnight. I think there have been some things that have become more and more transparent, I think we’re headed that direction, but again I’m a single voice in a big organization and we need to sort of get there as a process, as a group.”

(Do the Sounders have interest in hosting an MLS All-Star Game?) “I wouldn’t say that we’re not interested in it. We haven’t made it a priority. We’ve prioritized things differently. And we were able to host the MLS Cup when it was neutral in 2009, so as stadiums get built and teams vie for the All-Star Game, I’m not sure how high we are on the totem pole. But I think at some point in the future it’d be something we’d like to have in Seattle.”

(There has been talk in Toronto about the possibility of four DPs. Do you know anything about that?) “For sure we’re only allowed three DPs, so I don’t know what they’re referring to. I don’t know. If they can add a fourth DP, I’m thrilled, because we’d like to do the same.”

(What are you expecting for the second half of the season?) “Look, I hope we kind of keep the form we’ve been in. After the five-game disaster to the beginning of the season, I think in the last 11 we’re … maybe second-best to RSL. And if we can continue with the pace, I think we’ve had 22 points from 11 games — two points a game would be a very, very good clip and put is into a very good playoff position. But it’s sort of one game and a time and trying to collect points and get ourselves into the playoffs and hopefully be peaking towards the end of summer or late fall. It’s sort of been proven that there’s very little correlation between where a team finishes in the standings and how they do in MLS Cup. We want to be peaking at the right time and have a good five or six games in the playoffs and try to win a Cup.”

| More in Sounders FC, Stop and chats

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