New England Soccer Today

Report: Caraglio Out – Is Lekic Next?

According to a report from Radio Cooperativa (Chile), Milton Caraglio, who became the Revolution’s first Designated Player last August, has reached an agreement with Chilean first division side C.S.D. Rangers.

Caraglio, a native of Argentina, signed with New England on Aug. 2 and scored three goals in 12 games with the Revolution, including a two-goal effort against New York on Aug. 22. He also tallied the team’s final goal of 2011 – a 46th minute strike against Toronto FC – in its season finale at BMO Field on Oct. 22, which ended in a 2-2 draw.

In November, the team announced that it had declined its option on the 23-year-old striker with the hope of re-signing him to a cap-friendly figure. But, according to a Dec. 27 report from the Boston Globe, head coach Jay Heaps acknowledged that re-signing Caraglio, as well as Rajko Lekic and Monsef Zerka – both of whom had their options declined in November as well – would be a tough task to accomplish.

“We are closer on some than others,’’ Heaps told the Globe. “We have had conversations with all of them, but to think we will have all three back is unrealistic. With the salary cap, we have to look at every player and their impact on the cap.”

Apparently, Caraglio’s impact on the cap was too steep for the Revolution. The complex loan agreement with Rosario Central (Argentina) originally sent the striker’s sticker price into the Designated Player range despite the fact that the 6-2, 195lbs. target man was drawing a salary of $54,000 in 2011.

Terms of Caraglio’s contract with Rangers have not been released.

Meanwhile, the future of Caraglio’s strike partner toward the latter stages of the season – Lekic – is far from certain after a recent tweet from the Danish striker, as well as a published report from his native Denmark.

Last month, the emotional supporting forward tweeted that his brief Revolution career was all but finished.

“Unfortunately, it does not look like I’m resigning (with the) New England Revolution,” Lekic tweeted on Dec. 22.

However, according to a Jan. 2 report from Danish newspaper Jydske Vestkysten, Lekic said that he is still waiting to hear back from the Revolution after receiving an offer from an undisclosed club. The report suggests that Lekic will make a decision within the next 10 days.

The 30-year-old striker was signed on Apr. 8 after separate stints with Danish SuperLiga club Silkeborg IF. In 23 games with the Revolution, he scored six goals and an assist.

In the interim, Lekic, according to the same report, is attempting to find a Danish club to train with while negotiations continue. In 2011, Lekic earned $274,004 as a member of the Revolution.

Lekic also alluded to the fact that he has not ruled out signing with another MLS club, or a return to the Danish SuperLiga.

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  1. Chris B

    January 3, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Lekic’s hit on the cap is clear. However, to my understanding the issue with Milton was the transfer fee, his cap hit was low at $54,000. I don’t know how I feel about this really. Focusing on Rajko, I just read a really good interview where the club offered him a semi contract so his future would still be murky. The guy has a family and is y to settle and he actually wants to be here, pretty badly it seems as well. So many players of his caliber would just walk away from the Revs but he’s a better person than that. I don’t care how common it is in the league just offer the guy a full contract, he already said he will accept lower money. Even though he is the type of striker that lives off crosses which doesn’t really fit with MLS, with a better team he can do better, he’s shown that.

    • Sean Donahue

      January 3, 2012 at 6:05 pm

      It’d make even more sense to re-sign Lekic if they also re-sign Zerka – someone who actually can cross the ball to him. It’s great to try to save some cap space if you have clear plans for what to do with it, but the Revs are at a point now where they need half a team and are just a couple weeks away from the start of the season. Not a good place to be.

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