Atlanta United’s Villalba no longer classified as a designated player


To accommodate signing Ezequiel Barco as a Designated Player, Atlanta United used Targeted Allocation Money to buy down the salary of Hector Villalba.

MLS teams are allowed to have just three Designated Players, which are players whose salaries exceed the maximum budget charge, which was $480,625 in 2017. According to MLS, that charge is “determined by averaging all amounts payable over the guaranteed contract term excluding option years.”

Villalba received guaranteed compensation of $770,750 in 2017, according to the players union database. Barco’s salary hasn’t been revealed, but the team reportedly paid $15 million to acquire his rights. The team’s other two Designated Players are Josef Martinez and Miguel Almiron.  Villalba scored 13 goals and had 11 assists last season.

MLS rosters must be compliant with league rules today. Information on each team’s roster, including international slots and loans, should be posted on the league website and each team’s website later this afternoon.


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