The Red Bulls trade away their promising young forward for United States international Heath PearceThe New York Red Bulls have shipped their promising young forward Juan Agudelo to Chivas USA for Heath Pearce and allocation money, a move that solves problems for both teams.
The teams confirmed the trade Wednesday afternoon.
New York is loaded at the striker position with both Thierry Henry and Kenny Cooper having career years for the club. Minutes at the striker position were very difficult to come by for the 19-year-old Agudelo, who has shown flashes of vast potential during his three seasons in Major League Soccer.
Acquiring Pearce will solidify an improving New York backline as the United States international is arguably one of the league's top three players in the left back position.
"Heath is a very talented and versatile defender who will bring immediate experience to our defense," Red Bulls general manager Erik Soler said. "We have been long-time fans of his game and think that he will be an important player in our squad."
While there will be some backlash from trading away one of America's top soccer prospects, New York has arranged several provisions in the trade that will allow the club to benefit should Agudelo move abroad in the future.
New York receives a substantial amount of allocation money for the forward and will also get large percentage of any transfer fee involved in the future. So even if Agudelo moves to Europe in the future, the Red Bulls will receive a significant amount of the transfer fee.
"We obtained a significant amount of financial flexibility moving forward with this trade. It was a deal we could not turn down,” Soler said.
For Pearce, the move provides the defender with a chance to join one of MLS's contending teams. There might be some questions over the futures of starting left back Roy Miller and young backup Conor Lade but the deal gives the Red Bulls a bonafide star in the position. With Wilman Conde expected back in the next month, New York could rely on a brickwall-like defense heading into the playoffs.
Chivas USA isn't expected to contend for a playoff spot this season but in acquiring Agudelo, the team makes a move that could drastically improve its offense. The club is tied with winless Toronto FC for the league's worst offense with only six goals in 10 matches.
“I am certainly excited to have Juan Agudelo joining our team," Chivas USA coach Robin Fraser said. "He’s a dynamic young forward who has an incredible future ahead of him."
In a seperate deal, Chivas USA completed a move for Philadelphia Union defender Danny Califf in exchange for Michael Lahoud and allocation money.