New England Soccer Today

Source: Soares to Verona Talks Stalled

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

Photo credit: Kari Heistad/

It appears that A.J. Soares’ move to Hellas Verona is in jeopardy of falling apart.

According to multiple sources, negotiations between the former Revolution center back and the Serie A side have stalled, and after the transfer window closed on Monday, Soares’ hopes of playing in Italy seem to be slipping away.

A Verona spokesman said in a phone interview on Tuesday that the club has no new players to announce now that the transfer window for Serie A teams has been shut.

Another source with knowledge of the negotiations says that the club is no longer actively pursuing Soares. An attempt to reach Soares’ agent for comment was unsuccessful.

Though Verona was interested in Soares before the transfer window opened on Jan. 1, negotiations reportedly fell apart recently due to finances. And, according to a source, Soares can thank a former adversary for that.

Rafael Marquez, the former New York Red Bulls defender who joined Verona last summer following a sterling performance at the World Cup, reportedly has a clause in his contract that states he will be paid a significant sum of money if the club signs another defender. Thus, the signing of Soares — even as a free agent — would trigger the clause.

So Verona, which has the fourth-worst defense in Serie A, and needing reinforcements along its back line, was forced to improvise. Before the conclusion of the transfer window on Monday, they added defender Eros Pisano on loan from Palermo. Though there’s a mandatory option to buy on the deal, Verona appear to have temporarily dodged having to pay the extra fee on Marquez’s contract, which expires at the end of this season.

Marquez, who played against Soares numerous times in MLS, even bragged about taking a pay cut to sign with Verona this summer after his deal– which had undisclosed terms — was announced.

What this means for Soares’ immediate future is unclear. Typically, clubs address their needs during the transfer window. Once it closes, options become severely limited for free agents. As a free agent, Soares is able to join Verona outside of the transfer window — until Feb. 28 —  if he and his agent can re-structure a deal.

The Revolution still retain his MLS rights, so he’ll be allocated to them automatically if he makes the decision to return to the league.

You can reach Julian at and follow him on twitter @juliancardillo


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