Home MLS Toronto FC Toronto FC reveals the price Chivas had to pay for Bocanegra’s rights

Toronto FC reveals the price Chivas had to pay for Bocanegra’s rights

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The allocation order rewards teams in an even more random fashion than the mysterious distribution of allocation money.

While MLS fans are never informed how much allocation money teams actually have to spend and the kind of it relief it offers from the cap, at least we have some ideas on how clubs can earn it. Finish a season poorly, and you get monetary help. If you need to sign players for a CONCACAF Champions League push, there’s allocation money for that too. You can use it or trade it.

But the allocation order is all about timing. If your franchise is at the top of the order when a marketable U.S. national teamer decides he wants to make a return to the league, you either get the chance at the player or, in the case of Canadian franchises, a chance for a big return. Let’s face it, when national teamers return to North America, they’re coming for the America part. They want to come home. They want their money to not be colour-coded.

Carlos Bocanegra

When news broke that Carlos Bocanegra was looking to leave Rangers and was talking with Chivas USA, Toronto FC knew it was in a position of strength. Chivas was going to need to take Bocanegra through the allocation process and TFC held top spot. On Canada Day, the Reds announced the selling price; Chivas’s first-round pick in the 2015 SuperDraft and an international slot that’s good to the end of the 2014 season.

As TFC is maxed out with internationals, that extra spot gives the club breathing room — though the addition of internationals comes at the prices of just that much less room for Canadian prospects at the inn.

This isn’t the first time TFC has held the aces when an American national-teamer has wanted to come home. In 2008, striker Brian McBride indicated he wanted to finish his pro soccer career in Chicago. TFC held top spot, and after a protracted negotiation that was, ahem, “helped” along by league HQ, the Reds traded the allocation spot and the right to sign McBride to Chicago in exchange for first-round pick, allocation money and Chad Barrett, who was the Fire’s leading scorer at the time.

That draft pick turned into keeper Stefan Frei, who is still with the club, even though he’s been relegated to the back-up role. And, say what you will about Barrett, he still has to regarded as one of the better strikers TFC has employed in its history — he took pride in the jersey and worked exceptionally hard, which can’t be said about many of the forwards the club has had in its difficult time in MLS.

Will Bocanegra turn into a better bounty than Barrett and Frei? We will see.

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