Sunday, February 7, 2016

Dropping in on the Crew SC Budget

Let's get something out of the way real quick: Columbus Crew SC budget matched the largest increase as a percentage of any team in MLS, YE 2014 to YE 2015. My records show it at +60%. I'm not sure I've mentioned that before. That's a big deal.

Of course, it's a difference in scale. The LA Galaxy, for example, jumped the same percentage but they are going from $13m to 21m. Their 2015 wage matching what Columbus has spent in last six years combined.

Okay. Now that's done. Let's take a quick, high-level look at where Crew SC stand right now going into the 2016 regular season.

1. I expect Anthony Precourt's team to spend around $6m to start the season. This includes estimated pay increases for over performing players and incoming transfers. Why $6m? Educated guess. After the last CBA in 2010, median increase for MLS teams popped +20%. Same thing happened last year. Same %. Year after 2011, the league median increase dropped to 7% (YoY). Last year was kind of a "catch-up" year for Columbus. I expect them to fall around the median this year.

2. On the transfer front, unless Kei Kamara's situation deteriorates, Crew SC are likely all finished. That's not to say they haven't made a boatload of moves. They have. And for quality players. Emil Larsen, Amro Tarek and Ole Kamara are inspired acquisitions. The only question is how they integrate into the squad.

3. Berhalter isn't fixing most of what isn't broken. The starting eleven that took him to the MLS Cup Final is still 100% intact (a remarkable feat). The challenge in doing this is absorbing the pay increases of players like Ethan Finlay and Kei Kamara, while at the same time, working in some experienced players like Conor Casey and Corey Ashe.

4. And here's the roster, by position. From what I can tell, Tarek is more of a utility pickup that can play across the backline during the absence of a few players this summer for international callups. It addresses the issues of depth the team had there last year, though. Overall the roster is solid, right now.

Keep in mind, I'm estimating a bunch of these players (new and est. wage increases). Probably should round the figures but leaving as is.

DGaston Sauro$611,502
DMichael Parkhurst$306,000
DAmro Tarek$200,000
DCorey Ashe$193,545
DWaylon Francis$173,570
DHarrison Afful$165,000
DTyson Wahl$101,660
DChad Barson$61,200
DSergio Campbell$53,550
FKei Kamara$547,400
FOle Kamara$250,000
FConor Casey$180,000
GKSteve Clark$192,100
GKBrad Stuver$61,200
MFFederico Higuain$1,198,500
MFCedrick Mabwati$258,825
MFEthan Finlay$249,375
MFTony Tchani$214,500
MFEmil Larsen$200,000
MFJustin Meram$192,500
MFWil Trapp$180,950
MFMohammed Saeid$121,000
MFHector Jimenez$91,800
MFBen Swanson$88,458
MFRomain Gall$64,688
XXChase Minter
XXKyle Parker
XXMarshall Hollingsworth
XXRodrigo Saravia
XXVincent Cicciarelli

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