By all indications New York City FC will not be your typical expansion team when they begin play in MLS in 2015.
NYCFC’s director of football Claudio Reyna told reporters on Friday that:
“The clock is ticking and we’re looking now. We have 36 scouts within City Football Group and we started to speak with them last year already, started to make contact with them. Remember, we need to find Designated Players, but we need to find other players as well.”
Two things stand out from Reyna’s quote. One is that NYCFC will be able to tap into the expertise and infrastructure of Manchester City. Being able to tap into a global scouting base of 36 scouts already in place is a huge advantage for NYCFC.
The second part is that NYCFC have confirmed that they will have three DPs next season.
“I’m quite certain that New York City FC will sign three Designated Players,” head coach Jason Kreis said. “I’m also quite certain that those players will be extremely well vetted, researched, talked to [in order to] make sure they’re not only the right player for this team but the right person.”
A big challenge for NYCFC< and Orlando City who also join the league in 2015, will be filling out the rest of the roster. NYCFC cannot have a roster full of overseas players, so they will need to acquire established MLS players from other teams during the expansion draft, as well as picking up college talent though the 2015 SuperDraft. Like most fans, Kreis is concerned whether their is another homegrown talent to support two more MLS teams:
“With expansion, and certainly with expansion of two teams next year, I think [the dilution of the talent pool] is a concerning thing for us to consider,” he said. “What we need to remember is that we don’t have to get all of our players from expansion. We have the ability to go out and find new players for this league, new creative, attacking-type players that fit in to the City way of playing.
“I think we have a singular opportunity and almost a responsibility to go out and find new players to bring in to bolster the league a little bit.”