Sporting KC: Crucial offseason ahead for Peter Vermes

Sporting KC have some problems they will need to address over the offseason

Sporting KC announced their roster moves last week. The club did exercise contract options on Amadou DiaFelipe Hernandez, Gadi Kinda, Johnny Russell, and Graham Smith. While not entirely shocking, it was confirmed that Matt Besler‘s time with SKC has come to an end now that he is out of contract with the club.

Additionally, the club is in contract talks with Roger Espinoza, Gerso Fernandes, Felipe Gutierrez, and Erik Hurtado while the club denied contract options on Eric Dick, Wan Kuzain, Winston Reid, and Richard Sanchez. With all the moves announced, that leaves us speculating about what will happen over the offseason.

Now that Besler is gone, some are calling for Sporting KC manager Peter Vermes to change formation while others are calling for Vermes to fix the issues within the current style of play. One thing is for: Peter Vermes must address the defensive issues.

Now that Vermes has built and evolved his club’s formation over the past decade, with Matt Besler playing a very limited role on the field in the past couple of years, it would be very surprising if Vermes ditches the current 4-3-3 setup.

Due to the defensive frailties of last season, SKC must get another center back. Whether they reach an agreement with Winston Reid or not, relying on a 33-year-old with a long list of injuries in his time with West Ham is an awfully big gamble to take if you expect him to sharpen up a struggling defense.

In addition to securing a solid defense, Peter Vermes must contemplate selling a certain player. While Jaylin Lindsey, Cameron Duke, Felipe Hernandez haven’t drawn great interest elsewhere, Gianluca Busio has drawn quite a few rumors. If the price is right, Vermes won’t keep Busio from chasing his dreams, as he has shown in the past by letting Kei Kamara and Roger Espinoza explore the English game.

I don’t expect SKC to break the bank to sign another Alan Pulido, but I do think SKC needs to add another winger. Daniel Salloi had his second straight disappointing season, which proves even further that simply isn’t reliable. Gerso is in contract negotiations, but I wouldn’t be too upset if he doesn’t return.

He isn’t the cheapest player anymore as he would likely be making a salary upwards of $600,000 at the age of 30 by the time the 2021 season kicks off. With the style that Gerso plays with, it is going to be difficult to rely upon his speed for too much longer.

If SKC can bring in another player who could slide out into the wing and drop into the midfield, that would be the prime signing on the offensive side. Sporting’s success in 2021 comes down to this offseason. If Vermes can appropriately address the defensive issues and find a new spark moving forward that, SKC can easily be a much more dangerous side that can truly compete for MLS Cup in 2021.