ORLANDO, Fla. (December 12, 2016) - Orlando City SC announces its list of 11 protected players ahead of the 2016 Major League Soccer (MLS) Expansion Draft set to take place on Tuesday, Dec. 13 at 2 p.m. ET. The Expansion Draft will be held to build the rosters of expansion sides Atlanta United FC and Minnesota United FC ahead of the 2017 season.
MLS clubs may protect 11 players between their Senior, Supplemental and Reserve Rosters. Once one player has been claimed from a club’s non-protected roster, that club is removed from the Expansion Draft and may not lose any further players. Atlanta and Minnesota will select five players each, with Atlanta making the first pick of the draft.
Below are the lists of protected and unprotected players:
GK Joe Bendik
D José Aja - International
D Rafael Ramos
M Cristian Higuita
M Kaká - Designated Player, International
M Kevin Molino
M Antonio Nocerino - International
M Matías Pérez García - International
M Brek Shea
F Cyle Larin
F Carlos Rivas - Designated Player, International
Automatically protected players:
GK Mason Stajduhar - Homegrown
D Conor Donovan - Generation adidas
D Tommy Redding – Homegrown
D Tyler Turner - Homegrown**
M Richie Laryea - Generation adidas, International
Available for selection:
GK Earl Edwards, Jr.
D Kevin Alston**
D Mikey Ambrose
D Luke Boden**
D Seb Hines**
D David Mateos – International
M Servando Carrasco
M Devron García – International
M Tony Rocha
F Júlio Baptista – International**
F Hadji Barry
F Pedro Ribeiro**
F Bryan Róchez - Designated Player, International
Additionally, defender Rafael Ramos, midfielder Cristian Higuita and forward Cyle Larin have received U.S. Green Cards and will no longer count as International players.
**Players whose options were not exercised for next year become available for the Expansion Draft, with the exception of Homegrown and Generation adidas players, who are automatically protected.
Generation adidas/Homegrown players:
Generation adidas players who have not been graduated at the end of the 2016 MLS Season and Homegrown players on a club’s Supplemental/Reserve Roster at the end of the 2016 MLS Season are automatically protected (clubs do not need to use a protected slot on them).
Designated Players are NOT automatically protected (i.e., clubs must choose whether to protect such players and if such player is not protected, he will be available for selection in the Expansion Draft).
Clubs are restricted in the number of international player(s) that they may make available. Clubs may make available a number of international players equal to their total number of international players minus three, provided that if a club has three or fewer international players it may not make more than one such player available.
For more information on the 2016 Expansion Draft Rules and Regulations, visit here.