Sacha Kljestan, one of two Red Bulls DPs, could have a third one joining the team. (Photo by Keith Furman)
By Michael Lewis
Front Row Soccer Editor
New Red Bulls sporting director Denis Hamlett says that the team is open to adding a third Designated Player to the Major League Soccer team.
Speaking to the media Wednesday afternoon for the first time since he was named to succeed Ali Curtis in that position, Hamlett said he and head coach Jesse Marsch must see how things play out in the early going.
“I think we’re open on filling the spot,” he said during a conference call. “We feel we have a good starting point with our group right now. We will see how things play out. But we have the assets in the GAM and the TAM if we want to go out and get another DP. We’re open to that.”
GAM is general allocation money, while TAM is Targeted allocation money.
The Red Bulls have two designated players — team captain and midfielder Sacha Kljestan and midfielder-forward Gonzalo Veron.
With Hamlett moving from assistant coach to sporting director, an assistant’s job is open. Chris Armas is Marsch’s first lieutenant.
Hamlett, who could promote someone internally, said that the team was “going to evaluate all options.” He praised Red Bulls II head coach John Wolyniec, who guided the team to the United Soccer League regular-season title and to the USL Cup.
“We think John has done a wonderful job with Red Bull II,” he said.
“So, we will evaluate all options available.”
But Hamlett said there were more important matters to concern himself with — Thursday’s CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal encounter at the Vancouver Whitecaps and Sunday’s season-opener at expansion team Atlanta United FC.
“The most important thing now is getting ready for the CCL game and get all the give all support we can for Jesse and his coaching staff so we can get the right result on Thursday so we can move on and get ready for ready for a big game in Atlanta,” he said. “Our main goal right now is taking care of these two games.”