Here’s the deal: Emilio and United have signed an amendment to his original contract, essentially a bonus (how much, I don’t know) that brings his earnings past the DP threshhold of $400,000-plus. He had been guaranteed $313,000 this year. His original contract remains intact, but at some point this year, one of three things must occur: United must sign him to a new deal, trade him or sell him abroad. Fair to say, his scoring output the next few months will determine his fate.
Bottom line: Emilio has a fatter contract — reward for his performance last year and perhaps motivation this year — and, for the time being, United cannot sign another designated player (from Argentina or elsewhere). It does not, however, prevent the club from acquiring non-DP players from abroad.
To me this deal appears to be doing one of two things.
- It shuts Emilio up long enough for him to go into the “shop window” until the next transfer window opens. United just wants him to play well to get his value up and then get his sulking tail right out of town.
- It give Emilio a chance to prove he is worth DP money next season under a new deal with United. If he plays as well as last season, then DC will have to reorganize the roster to get his new DP money under the cap.
For now, assuming Emilio was just sulking (and not, say, hiding an injury), this should spur him into raising his performance. From Luci’s perspective, what he needs to do is simple. If he wants to stay, then he plays better to earn the DP money next year. If he wants to go, then he needs to play well to attract the interest from other clubs.