The Vancouver Whitecaps continued their busy offseason by trading away their captain Kendall Waston. Waston had made it clear that he no longer wanted to remain in Vancouver, after issues with the front office, Carl Robinson being fired, and feeling called out by one of the Caps’ supporters groups Southsiders.
Many of us expected Waston to be transferred out of Major League Soccer. While that is still a possibility, for now Waston will remain in MLS, reuniting with some familiar faces in Cincinnati. In return, the Whitecaps receive $450,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM), $300,000 in Targeted Allocation Money (TAM), and an international roster spot for 2019.
If certain, mysterious, performance-based incentives are achieved (e.g., Defensive Player of the Year), the Whitecaps will receive an additional $75,000 in GAM.
For some fans, the return may not have been what they had expected, but it is worth noting that the transaction is a record for allocation money for a defender in MLS. Additionally, in our year-end review, many of our writers suggested that anywhere near one million should be seen as a victory.
Although his final six months with the club, and his going away tweet, will leave a sour taste in the mouth of fans, it is undeniable the contributions Waston made to the Whitecaps. Waston tallied an impressive 15 goals and six assists in 136 starts. He was twice named the Whitecaps Player of the Year and Best XI in MLS (2015 and 2017), and was an All-Star in 2016. He was also consistently in the running for defensive player of the year, and was at the top in the league for clearances. When teams played against the Whitecaps, they were unable to cross the ball into the box. Finally, he scored the goal that sent the Whitecaps to the playoffs in 2014.
The Whitecaps now have an abundance of international spots and so much GAM and TAM that I have lost count! We will see how much of it they will use.
What are your thoughts on the deal? Was the return sufficient? What are your expectations going forward?