Real Salt Lake has left striker Yura Movsisyan unprotected for Tuesday’s expansion draft.
After a season in which the designated player started just 16 matches and publicly butted heads with RSL coach Mike Petke over playing time, the move gives the team and player a chance to part ways. If Los Angeles FC is interested, that is.
MLS released the protected and unprotected lists for every team Sunday, two days before the 11th MLS Expansion Draft.
On RSL’s protected list are goalkeeper Nick Rimando, defender Justen Glad, defender David Horst, defender Marcelo Silva, midfielder Kyle Beckerman, midfielder Luke Mulholland, midfielder Albert Rusnák, midfielder Sebastian Saucedo, forward Joao Plata, forward Jefferson Savarino and forward Luis Silva.
Generation Adidas and off-budget Homegrown Players are not eligible to be selected in the expansion draft, making defender Danilo Acosta, forward Jordan Allen, midfielder Jose Hernandez, forward Brooks Lennon and forward Ricardo Velazco exempt.
LAFC will have five picks in the expansion draft and cannot take more than one player from each club. Every team can protect up to 11 players.
Movsisyan, the Armenian international who grew up in Pasadena, Calif., was not one of RSL’s 11.
He signed a long-term deal with RSL in October 2016, and according to figures released by the MLS Players Union he made $1,973,750 in guaranteed compensation this year.
Movsisyan started the first 10 matches of the season, but six games into Petke’s tenure the new head coach began to work Luis Silva into the starting lineup. Movsisyan was open about his frustrations with the decrease in playing time, and by the time the summer transfer window rolled around trade rumors began to surface.
“Being at stage that I am, I’m not going to come back and sit on the bench again,” Movsisyan said at his exit interview last month. “For sure I can say that that’s not going to happen.”
MLS also released the list of free agents for the upcoming season on Sunday.
From RSL Nick Rimando, Chris Wingert, Chris Schuler, and Chad Barrett made the list. Kyle Beckerman was left off. General manager Craig Waibel told the Salt Lake Tribune in October that the team would enter into negotiations with both Beckerman and Rimando.
However, Beckerman’s absence does not mean that he has signed with RSL. The collective bargaining agreement stipulates that an out-of-contract player who had a maximum salary budget charge the previous season and is offered the max in the following season is not eligible for free agency. Likewise, if the same player is not offered the max, he can only go through free agency if he agrees to a Standard Player Agreement that puts his salary budget charge at less than the max.
Also on Tuesday, free agency begins. The waiver draft will be on Wednesday, followed by Stage 1 of the re-entry draft on Friday. Stage 2 is scheduled for Dec. 21.