Garber touches on Edu negotiations, Camilo saga, and more during MLS SuperDraft

Don Garber

Photo by Brad Smith/ISIphotos.com

By FRANCO PANIZO

The 2014 MLS SuperDraft may have dominated much of the talk in American and Canadian soccer circles on Thursday, but it was not the only topic grabbing headlines.

MLS commissioner Don Garber met with reporters in Philadelphia during the three-hour draft to discuss a bevy of topics regarding the league right now, including the ongoing negotiations with U.S. Men’s National Team midfielder Maurice Edu and the Camilo-Vancouver Whitecaps-Queretaro saga.

On the Edu front, Garber said the Philadelphia Union are still in negotiations with the veteran midfielder and that there was not much else to report at the time. Garber also vehemently came to the defense of MLS, which has been criticized by fans and pundits in recent days for blocking the Union from making a pricey move for Edu despite it helping Toronto FC shell out some major coin for midfielder Michael Bradley and forward Jermaine Defoe earlier this week.

“There was way too much made of the league role in this,” said Garber said of the Edu negotiations. “I want to be very clear, whether it’s our league or any other league, player signings are approved by the league, so this is no different than any other transaction. The league office is going to review and is going to be very engaged in what players get paid and what their contract length is, etc., etc.

“In this particular case, (the Union are) going to continue to negotiate a deal that’s going to make sense. If it makes sense for Maurice, he will come back. If it doesn’t make sense for Maurice, he won’t come back. But this whole idea that the league rejected Maurice coming in, we reject deals every day if we don’t agree that they’re the right deal. I think many of the media folks that I’ve read some reports, not all thought the salary was the right salary either. They’re going to go back to the drawing board and hopefully get a deal done.”

Garber did not mention specifics about the deal, but stated that the reported $1.2 million that Edu was seeking to make from Philadelphia was “perhaps on the low end.”

What is not on the low end, according to Garber, is the transfer fee MLS is set to receive from Queretaro in the near future for 2013 MLS Golden Boot winner Camilo. The Brazilian has been involved in a bizarre saga with the Whitecaps and Queretaro in recent weeks, as he has trained with the Liga MX club and worn its jersey despite still having a contract with a Vancouver team that initially entered the offseason with no plans to sell him.

That, however, will not be how things play out.

“There’s been a transfer that’s going to happen,” said Garber. “Ultimately, (I’m) very disappointed. He had a contract. That contract in the world that we live in – whether it’s here, whether it’s around the world, whether it’s under FIFA rules – needs to be honored. But we all deal in a world where players are not happy where they are and you have to manage through that.

Ultimately, there was a good result: a high transfer fee, they’ll get allocation money and Vancouver will re-build their team with a new coach.”

Garber also touched on a pair of stadium situations. He said that New York City FC is getting closer to announcing a temporary home but danced around the question of if it would be at Yankee Stadium.

The New York Yankees along with Manchester City own NYCFC, which is set to begin play in 2015.

“I think shortly they’ll probably announce a place. They’re just finalizing all their details,” said Garber. “They’ve got some time. They’ve got to get a great spot. Ferran (Soriano, NYCFC CEO) – who we’re all very excited about, he’s a very bright, experienced guy – has said they’re looking for not just a place to play, they’re looking for a home. That home needs to start where they’re going to play temporarily and then they’ve got to find a permanent home for the stadium. They’ve got work to do there.”

D.C. United’s pursuit of a soccer-specific stadium was the other venue-related topic Garber discussed. Garber said that United may not have moved as quickly as they would have liked with their talks with local government to build a new home, but that progress is being made.

“Erick Thohir and Jason (Levien) are very focused,” said Garber of the club’s owners. “They were in (New York City) making their business plan presentation in the league office last week. A number of other key milestones that they are going to hope to hit in the next couple of months, but they’re encouraged and expect to be able to start moving dirt some time in the next 12 months.”

Garber added that he was “very confident” that D.C. United could pull it off in that timeframe.

—–

What do you make of Garber’s comments about the Edu situation? Think MLS should have sold Camilo or kept him and made a statement? Agree that D.C. United could start building its SSS within the next 12 months?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in Featured, Major League Soccer, MLS Draft 2014, MLS- D.C. United, MLS- New York City FC, MLS- Philadelphia Union, MLS- Vancouver Whitecaps. Bookmark the permalink.

66 Responses to Garber touches on Edu negotiations, Camilo saga, and more during MLS SuperDraft

  1. Bossmann says:

    Wait….Camilo went to Queretaro? When did this happen?
    I thought MLS picked up his contract for 2014

    • soccerhorn says:

      You need to check the news a little more often. This has been one of the major stories in the MLS this off-season. The Michael Bradley transfer pushed it off the front page.

    • Luetchy says:

      Vancouver had an option for Camilo for 2014 and extended that option. However, apparently contract options are an American invention and are not honored by FIFA. I didn’t know this until this week…

      • Increase says:

        I’m gunna take a guess and say this:

        1. Camilo would probably lose a civil lawsuit in the US.

        2. The civil lawsuit doesn’t matter to FIFA and nothing would happen in Football land.

        3. Law suits are horrible for everyone in this situation so they all decided to make nice and “sell” Camilo to save time, money and face.

  2. Human says:

    This is what happens when no one can understand how your league is run. MLS needs to be more clear about its rules.

    • Don’t know if you’re referring to camilo or edu but the statement stands for both.

    • Quit whing about soccer in the US says:

      When you say “This”…as in this is what happens…what are you talking about ? Are you talking about a great league evolving and growing by signing players like Dempsey/Bradley and now others ?

      Or are you whining about the fact that the other whiners are not getting the answers they want to hear…a double bonus whinefest, if you will.

      I am guessing the second…hopefully I am wrong.

    • whoop-whoop says:

      LoL. Yes of course… because contract negotiations and players wanting to move mid-contract NEVER happens in other s leagues, right?

    • evan says:

      this whole episode of paying Bradley $6.5 mil and then refusing Edu $1.2 mil is really shameful IMO. idk what the hell happened to Edu at Stoke but he’s a good player with World Cup experience, he could really be an asset to the team in Brazil, and his chances of making it to the World Cup are gonna be totally hosed if he can’t get some playing time soon…

  3. CSD says:

    So MLS picked up his option to come back to the MLS and they had the option then to drop him if they so desired. Apparently Queretaro decided he wanted to exercise his options and he went to Mexico to get a better deal.

    You hear this same garbage in the NFL how some player doesn’t honor his contract and holds out for more money. The same teams in the NFL can terminate this apparent righteous contract whenever they want.

    If Queretaro had signed a guaranteed contract I would feel a little sympathetic for more sad old Garber. You are getting money for a player, stop your whining MLS. If you want to play the contract game fair both ways guarantee all contracts for their full length, if not shut the F up you Biotch.

    • SJ says:

      Your argument is hard to take seriously since the player’s name is Camilo and the Mexican team in Queretaro.

    • andy says:

      Queretaro is a club, and Camilo is a player, and MLS is a business not a soccer charity just like any other league in the world. Biotch.

  4. Boyd says:

    MLS should just get what they can for Camilo and hope FIFA doesn’t get involved or It could be the end of those Mickey Mouse contracts they use.

    • Yevgeniy says:

      Why are they Mickey Mouse? If a player agrees to give the team/league an option to extend for a year, that’s the deal. Perhaps, that was negotiated in exchange for a slightly higher salary than otherwise would be the case for the first 2 years

  5. KJ says:

    Wait, so the league can ultimately reject any signing they want, with essentially no reason because of the lack of transparency? Sounds shady. Not to mention the whole allocation order mess.

  6. slowleftarm says:

    While there are sound reasons for some of the quirky rules in MLS, there’s no reason for the lack of transparency. I follow this league pretty closely and it seems like I learn a new obscure rule every day.

    • betamale says:

      they are just mimicking the federal government’s record low level of transparency under our newest king.

    • Shane says:

      How many magic allocation beans do we need for this transaction Don?

    • BobbyB says:

      Because MLS are making it up as they go along. They are sensing some momentum and want to try to capitalize on upcoming WC with it. Whatever plan they previously cooked up has been thrown out the window in the last two weeks due to the Bradley deal. MLS really does want the best US players to play in MLS. Edu would be an improvement on his position in almost any team. The problem is that MLS doesn’t want the whole genie out of the bottle yet. Without a coherent plan they are destined to make major $$$ mistakes if they are not careful. So…. They just put on the brakes whenever they please and make wacky statements to sort of fit the given scenario (that they just created by sticking their nose in again) in the hopes that it will eventually just go away.

    • BobbyB says:

      Because MLS are making it up as they go along. They are sensing some momentum and want to try to capitalize on upcoming WC with it. Whatever plan they previously cooked up has been thrown out the window in the last two weeks due to the Bradley deal. MLS really does want the best US players to play in MLS. Edu would be an improvement on his position in almost any team. The problem is that MLS doesn’t want the whole genie out of the bottle yet. Without a coherent plan they are destined to make major $$$ mistakes if they are not careful. So…. They just put on the brakes whenever they please and make wacky statements to sort of fit the given scenario (that they just created by sticking their nose in again) in the hopes that it will eventually just go away.

    • go euro or go home says:

      what is so confusing about an extension option on a contrast? this is basic contractual stuff and Camilo’s agent has to bare major responsibility here. Maybe the Whitecaps communicated poorly too, but this is not a new thing with contracts.

      The contract side of sports is extremely tedious. Why do fans expect to understand every detail about these things? Player acquisition is also very complicated in most sports. Add in the fact that soccer is ridiculously complex with all of the leagues and different rules/seasons for each league and is it that hard to understand why MLS has some complicated rules?

      I feel like I should change my name to quit whining about soccer in America II

      • Remington says:

        The confusion is that this is a unilateral contract extension, something no other league in the world uses because FIFA has repeatedly found to be illegal.
        I think Camilo’s agent knows the rules better than MLS and is using them to get his player more money knowing that MLS will not take the case to FIFA.

  7. Mdac1012 says:

    Camillo is the player, Queretaro is the team.

  8. hm says:

    i thought Camilo wanted to get Canadian citizenship. how else will Canada qualify for world cup 2018?

  9. hm says:

    How is EDU worth 1.2million a year? MLS overpayed for Defoe and Bradley. they’re suppose to make 6 million a year? Defoe won’t put butts in the seat neither will Edu. Cahill makes around 5 million a year in New York and does he add “superstar glamour” to the club or does suddenly 20 million aussies wanna follow Red Bulls?

    Raise the cap from 3 million to 4 million for 2016 and then to 5 million by 2020

    • MLS_Soccer_Talkerf says:

      By 2020 needs to be at like 10M. The caps already at 3 5 M.

      • Dave-O says:

        My question is why doesn’t MLS institute something like a luxury tax? That way the teams that want to spend more can, except they would have to pay dollar-for-dollar for every buck over the cap in the form of a tax. Put that money into a pool and distribute it evenly to teams that did not exceed the cap… with the MLS taking out it’s substantial portion, of course.

      • fischy says:

        Pretty sure it will be $3.1 million, up from the $2.95 million cap in 2013.

      • soccerhorn says:

        You do understand that more than half of the teams in the MLS do not earn $10million dollars a year in gross revenue? That a $10m salary cap would be unobtainable for all but two or three teams? That it would create a league where every year, we would watch Galaxy, Sounders, and NYRB duke it out while the other 17 teams sit and watch? That if any of those teams did try to compete by signing expensive players, it would bankrupt them, and, in doing so, might possibly destroy the MLS entirely? Believe it – it has happened before. It was called the NASL.

        • bryan says:

          You are wrong. Chivas and SJ make $15M in revenue and they are the lowest. According to Forbes. He’s also talking about 2020, not today.

    • JayAre says:

      Same thing I was thinking. We can’t let our thirst for bringing players back home blind us. If we are willing to pay $1.2 Million a year for someone who doesn’t see the field at a mid-level team in Europe what will we pay for the likes of Kaka?

    • Siberian says:

      Edu is a proven MLS player. And he’s proven himself to be at least decent at the international level. And he’s 27 and has a good chance of getting back into the USMNT rotation, which increases his marketing potential dramatically. After this World Cup Jermaine Jones and Kyle Beckerman will probably start to fade from the national team and a midfield spot will open up for others to fill. Maurice Edu is absolutely worth $1.2 mil for an MLS team.

      You seem to have an issue with the DP system as a whole, but I think it works. It’s important to have recognizable names. And I think the strategy of bringing U.S. players back to MLS is a good one. MLS finally recognizes that the core MLS fan is an American soccer fan. If someone is only interested in the David Beckhams and Thierry Henrys of the world, they probably aren’t going to be watching more than a few MLS games a season anyway. Philadelphia fans will love Edu.

  10. MLS_Soccer_Talkerf says:

    MLS looks bad here. Basically the player and the other Club said “Oh it’s just an MLS contract”.

    • SJ says:

      Amen. If I were MLS, the first call would have been to King Sepp. You have to defend your contracts otherwise this is going to happen more and more.

  11. frank from santiago says:

    ” I think many of the media folks that I’ve read some reports, not all thought the salary was the right salary either.”……….yet bradley, defoe and dempsey somehow are?? that’s some BS, i’m not a union fan, but it would suck for the union if edu doesn’t sign ’cause he’s “asking for to much”. They’ve thrown an obscene amount of money already but 1.5 mil all of a sudden is to much?

    • John says:

      The MLS is betting on changing preceptions of the league through the national team at the World Cup. Since Edu isn’t in the national team picture he is no more valueable then other guys like Beckerman. If this was Jermaine Jones I bet the league would have no problem spending it. Looking at the group its a risky gamble but appears to be what MLS is going for.

      • John says:

        MLS pretty much payed Bradley and Dempsey 20 million in transfers for the 2 seconds where the annoucer says “with 6 starting players making there home in the MLS” or whatever the number might be.

  12. Kor says:

    The Lord of the Manor referring to overly ambitious serfs:
    “The league office is going to review and is going to be very engaged in what players get paid and what their contract length is, etc., etc”

    As a USMNT follower, as well as an MLS fan, I would prefer having Edu play in the USA rather than in Turkey. There is a conflict between elevating soccer in the USA as a whole vs serving the self interest of MLS executives. IMO, converting USMNT fans into MLS fans means adding roster names with whom they identify, not shooing them away as they did with Mix Diskerud. Then, perhaps, the MLS Cup final will garner more than a paltry 500K viewers.

  13. Players have the right to choose the team that they will play with. Basically, there is no reason to argue because only the players know what is best for them. Big money involved but absolutely, these players also work really hard on the field.

  14. El Gringo says:

    Oh if only Piotr Nowak were still around Philly. He would either be tweeting that the fans F off or telling Edu to “go to hospital.”

  15. Vinniejonestownmassacre says:

    So the MLS will allow Defoe… 31yo Defoe, to become one of the highest paid MLS players ever but are gonna nixing a deal on Edu because it throws what defensive midfielders in the leagues salaries (who earn far less than they should, no glamour) out of wack? Makes MLSense…

  16. Roman Lewandowski says:

    Great news for soccer in Charlotte!

    link to charlotteobserver.com

    • Billy B says:

      interesting news. I think Charlotte/Atlanta could have more potential as a SE rivalry than Atlanta/Miami or Atlanta/Orlando. Plus there is plenty of space in Uptown Charlotte for a SSS.

  17. RB says:

    Not sure why people are so upset at Garber and MLS and their lack of logic, consistency & transparency. Aren’t they just following the example set by Blatter and FIFA?

  18. jor says:

    “I want to be very clear, whether it’s our league or any other league, player signings are approved by the league, so this is no different than any other transaction. The league office is going to review and is going to be very engaged in what players get paid and what their contract length is, etc., etc.”

    Is this really true of any league on this planet? (Let’s assume soccer only.)

    • Remington says:

      It is not.
      Other leagues do have to approve the contracts from the legal perspective but they don’t dictate how much a player makes.
      I’m starting to think Barber is a pathological liar.

      • go euro or go home says:

        ummm, do you not remember David Stern denying the Chris Paul to the Lakers deal? These things DO happen in other leagues.

        • Remington says:

          (Let’s assume soccer only.)

          • go euro or go home says:

            yeah, you are right. There are never any shady things that happen with player contracts in other countries. Signings are always legit and transparent (see: Kakuta) and players always get paid exactly what and when they thought they were signing up for (see: many leagues in across the globe)

        • Remington says:

          That doesn’t apply here. At the time of the proposed trade the NBA was operating the Hornets because the team didn’t have an owner.

          • go euro or go home says:

            even still, not just the league, but the players’ union sees everything that happens and has a chance to veto any deal in other sports in the US.

  19. soccerhorn says:

    The irony here is that Queretaro is a second-rate club even for the Liga MX. Gotta figure Camilo isn’t too bright, and just wanted a big payday. Been to the Queretaro stadium – it is a concrete dump, with broken scoreboards, no bathrooms, no parking, and chain link in the stands to separate their Ultras from the other team’s Ultras and all the Ultras from everyone else who can afford the $10 for a ticket in the shade. He might be getting more cash in pocket from Los Gallos, but he’ll soon miss that Canadian sense of hospitality!

  20. megger says:

    I’m surprised the MLS didnt come down hard on Queratero and Camilo. It’s the precedent it sets.
    Now any option year player can go sign with whomever they want. As much as I hate Bettman, you’d never see that happen in the NHL. Is MLS or the billionairres that own the Whitecaps afraid of a 6 month legal battle?

    MLS should throw the book at Camilo, his agent and Queratero. Fifa should be involved.

  21. Norman says:

    Vancouver exercised a club-only option on Camilo. FIFA doesn’t approve of club-only options because it hurts players. MLS didn’t push the issue because they were afraid that FIFA would force them, to drop all club-only options in all current and future contracts. MLS is in the wrong here. They know it and that is why they didn’t pursue it. MLS is perhaps the most anti-player soccer league in the world and they want to keep it that way.

    • go euro or go home says:

      “most anti-player soccer league in the world”

      hahahahahahahah. get out a little bit more often