Los Angeles FC might have its eyes on adding another player to its roster.
In a trade with Nashville SC, the club acquired the No. 1 spot in Major League Soccer’s allocation ranking. In exchange for the top slot, LAFC sent a combined $350,000 in general allocation money for the 2020 and 2021 seasons to Nashville, and also gifted the expansion side its natural second round pick in the 2022 MLS SuperDraft.
After the deal, Nashville is now 24th in the allocation ranking.
Major League’s Soccer allocation process is a mechanism the league uses to determine which teams can acquire players on the allocation ranking list. That list includes U.S. national team players, certain elite U.S. youth national team players and former MLS players returning to the league after joining a non-MLS club for a transfer fee greater than $500,000.
A player who has been training with LAFC recently – but remains unsigned by the team – would fall into that final category.
Andy Najar, a 26-year-old fullback, has been training with LAFC since early February in an attempt to regain his fitness. A regular contributor to the Honduran national team, Najar suffered a knee injury in the Concacaf Gold Cup last summer and hasn’t appeared for his club team – top tier Belgian side RSC Anderlecht – since May 16, 2019. Najar’s contract with club expires this June, according to transfermarkt.
Najar moved from Honduras to Washington, D.C. as a teenager and came up in D.C. United’s academy. In 2010, he signed a Generation Adidas contract and made his professional debut for the club at the age of 17, becoming their second-ever Homegrown signing. Najar blossomed into a pro with D.C. United, becoming a player who could star at right back or as a wide-midfielder, and someone who could use his speed to add to the attack. In 87 appearances across all contests for D.C. United, he tallied 10 goals and nine assists.
In 2013, D.C. United sold Najar to Anderlecht for a transfer fee that was reported at the time of being around $3 million. Because of the size of the transfer fee, D.C. United did not retain Najar’s MLS rights. Najar made 164 appearances with Anderlecht across six seasons, recording 14 goals and 16 assists. He helped the club win a pair of Belgian titles.
According to The Athletic, LAFC is “still evaluating” Najar’s fitness and recovery, but there’s a “good chance” he’ll be signed by the club at some point this season.