Dynamo Transactions: Koke Done In Houston

The rumor mill is in full swing, but we're keeping track of all of the news and rumors about the Houston Dynamo for you. Check back here for all the latest and greatest news.

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11 Total Updates since April 13, 2011
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Koke Done With Houston Dynamo

After last night’s draw with FC Dallas, Dynamo forward Sergio Koke apparently asked out of his contract. Though Houston tried to convince him to stay, he was having none of it, and now according to Jose De Jesus Ortiz of the Houston Chronicle, the Dynamo have filed papers with the league to terminate Koke’s contract.

The Dynamo responded by asking Koke to stick around at least for a few more weeks to give MLS more of a try, but he was adamant about leaving and the team didn’t bother trying to lobby him further.

Dynamo officials have already contacted the MLS commissioner’s office to terminate Koke’s contract.

“He’s expressed his interest to leave the club, and we’re going to regroup on Tuesday after the holiday to access the situation and talk to the league further,” Dynamo president Chris Canetti said.

Houston will now have to dive into the transfer market again as they look to solidify their offense with another creative player. It should be interesting to see who the staff comes up with this time around.

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Koke Apparently Wants Out Of Houston

According to a translation of his Facebook page, Dynamo forward Sergio Koke will apparently look to terminate his contract with the club. Koke came over to Houston from Aris FC just over a month ago, but hasn’t seen much playing time with the Dynamo just yet. Via Dynamo Theory, here is the Facebook post and translation:

Ok friends, as there are many people who want to know, i’m going to explain the situation in spanish. I am going to try to terminate my contract here in Houston, return home to my family and hope for the best. Its clear that my family and friends are counseling me to come home (Aris). All of my friends and family are fans of Aris. All I can say is that anything is possibe. Thanks for your love.

This is certainly a troubling development for the Dynamo, although Dom Kinnear probably has to bare some of the blame here for not giving Koke a starting role. It could just be that the man is homesick, and no one could blame him if so. Still, it’s looking like he’ll go down in Dynamo history as one of the rare misfires for the club on the transfer market. Assuming he can’t be persuaded to stay, anyway.

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Houston Dynamo To Introduce Sergio Koke Wednesday

Tuesday the Houston Dynamo announced Sergio Koke, the team's newest signing, will be introduced on Wednesday afternoon in a press conference.  According to reports, Koke is set to arrive in Houston late Tuesday night after finally having his work visa and other pertinent paperwork approved in Spain. 

On Monday, the Spanish forward discussed his excitement about coming to Houston and his relief now that the paperwork is complete.

"I'm very happy," Koke said.  "I'm very happy because it's been difficult after ten days of trying to get the passport.  Thank goodness it's all set and I'll be on a flight tomorrow."

It is not known if Koke will be available for Friday night's match against D.C. United, but the forward could feature if he has adjusted to the time difference and Houston's weather.

Wednesday's press conference will begin at 2:00 p.m. on the second floor of the Dynamo offices, located in the George R. Brown Convention Center.  Dynamo President Chris Canetti and Head Coach Dominic Kinnear will also be on hand for Koke's presentation.

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Dynamo Rejected Offer Of Davis And Cameron For Feilhaber

Per Jose De Jesus Ortiz of the Houston Chronicle, the Houston Dynamo were rebuffed by the New England Revolution as they attempted to acquire USMNT midfielder Benny Feilhaber. The price that the Revs were asking for was reportedly two prominent players for the Houston starting eleven: Brad Davis and Geoff Cameron. Dynamo president Chris Canetti commented on the frustration of the situation to Ortiz:

“We were very much interested in seeking the services of Benny Feilhaber and were active over the last four or five days in seeing if there was an opportunity to make a fit that would bring him here,” Dynamo president Chris Canetti said. “Unfortunately, as we dealt with the clubs that had priority over us in the MLS system, it became clear … that we weren’t going to be able to reach an agreement — at least not one that would be suitable for us.”

“I think all things considered, we’re still going in the right direction,” Canetti said. “Looking at the Benny opportunity I think was a smart thing to do. But we weren’t going to do anything that mortgaged not only our current state of affairs but our future. So ultimately I’ll sleep well at night knowing that we did the right thing here.”

Zach Woosley at Dynamo Theory has a great post up about how not acquiring Feilhaber isn’t quite the end of the world. The Dynamo have been very active in trade talks, and while those haven’t worked out for either new Red Bull Dwayne DeRosario or Feilhaber, the Dynamo are definitely trying their hardest to make something happen in the marketplace. Whether it’s now or later, they still have plenty of resources to make a strike for a star player, and shouldn’t feel any pressure to bring in someone if it’s not the perfect situation.

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Dynamo Rumors: Houston Talking To Revolution About Feilhaber

According to the Houston Chronicle’s Jose De Jesus Ortiz, the Houston Dynamo are in discussions with the New England Revolution for the services of midfielder Benny Feilhaber.

“Yeah, sure, the Dynamo are trying to get him. He’s a good player,” the MLS official said on the condition of anonymity.

Feilhaber, 26, was awarded to the Revolution according to the rules of the MLS’ returning USMNT player allocation order after Chivas USA and the Philadelphia Union both passed on him. He had been playing for AGF Aarhus, and has also seen time with Derby County and Hamburg SV.

The Dynamo have a history of strong midfielders with players like Stuart Holden and Ricardo Clark playing for the side, but have struggled to replace them as they’ve moved overseas the last few years. Feilhaber would fill a big need for the Dynamo as they’ve been lacking a few creative attacking pieces. Potentially joining up with last week’s transfer of Sergio Koke, he could make a big difference for the Dynamo attack.

No word yet on what the Dynamo would have to surrender to acquire Feilhaber.

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What Is Koke's Fit In Houston?

Last week provided an exciting coup for the Houston Dynamo as forward Sergio Koke was brought in from Greek side Aris FC. Not only will Koke energize the fanbase and provide some creativity up front, but the Dynamo reportedly also nabbed him without using their designated player exception, meaning the team could still find another star to help them out later in the season should they need it. 

Dynamo Theory's Zach Woosley took a look at Koke's skills and what role they project to, and came up with a few possible options for manager Dominic Kinnear: 

If Kinnear is determined to stick with his patented 4-4-2 diamond, with Koke in the CAM role, either Andre Hainault or Jermaine Taylor will be riding the bench in order to keep Geoff Cameron on the field. However, there's another option to consider but it's a little tricky.

Logic would tell you that if you have multiple good options in the midfield, then why not tinker with your formation to get both Koke and Cameron on the field in attacking roles? Of course all this is mute if Koke is fine with going back to a traditional striker role, but if he'd rather stay as the CAM then why not toy with a 4-5-1 or 4-3-3?

The reason I say this idea is tricky because Kinnear loves the 4-4-2 and that while we've seen variations on it during matches if a situation called for it (holding a lead or chasing a goal), when is the last time you can remember the Dynamo starting a match in anything other than the 4-4-2?

Go ahead and check out the full article; it's a good read. Also, Kinnear's reluctance to leave the 4-4-2 would get him killed in Xpert Eleven. Thank goodness he manages real football instead.

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Dynamo Transactions: Greek Media Adds Fuel To The Koke Fire

A few new outlets have joined in on reporting that Spanish forward Sergio Koke is set to make the move from Aris FC to the Houston Dynamo, becoming the second Designated Player in Houston's history. From Kathimerini (English Edition) :

Aris captain Sergio Koke bid farewell to the Thessaloniki club on April 13 after almost five years of service, to join MLS side the Houston Dynamo.

The Spanish forward is departing immediately to the US, as the MLS season is already under way, but made a tearful promise that one day he would return to Aris.

"I thought of my family first. I have been here for five years and I wanted a new experience, although I know I will not receive as much affection from the fans as I have here at Aris," Koke told a press conference.

"This club helped me develop as a man and then as a player. Aris is a club that makes you feel deep sentiments, but unfortunately such is life in professional soccer. This proposal came from abroad and it is going to help my family considerably," he added.

The club issued a statement thanking Koke for his contribution to its progress and wishing him luck in the MLS and the rest of his career.


For those who are wondering about the credibility of this source, the Kathimerini (English Edition) is a part of the International Herald Tribune, which is a part of the New York Times Company.

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Dynamo Transactions: Spanish Media Confirm Koke's Move To Houston Dynamo

It seems that word of Koke's departure from Aris and reported signing with the Houston Dynamo is spreading across Europe. Two Spanish sources are corroborating the story, though it should be noted that the Spanish media is sometimes less than reliable.

From MARCA:

The Malaga Sergio Contreras "Koke" starts its fourth adventure abroad after announcing his departure from Aris Thessaloniki to play in the MLS. Former Malaga, Marseille and Sporting Portugal leaves the Greek side to play in the Houston Dynamo.

 

'Koke', which was moved in the press conference of his departure, leaving the Aris after five seasons in the Hellenic club and signed with the Houston team, where he remained until 2013 and will receive around one million euros per season.

 

From El Desmarque Malaga:

The Malaga Sergio Contreras Koke opens a new phase in its colorful career. Aris Thessaloniki leaves and goes to the Houston Dynamo of Major League Soccer (MLS) U.S..At 27 years, will be the fifth country (after Spain, France, Portugal and Greece) where he plays his debut Carranque kid's hand in Joaquín Peiró Malaga.

 

After nearly five years in Thessaloniki, the opportunity to cross the pond and try a new experience in the United States attracts Koke, who has been hired by MLS itself, which owns the rights to the players. The operation has been completed in recent days by José Contreras, Koke's brother and agent, in Thessaloniki. This agreement was signed Wednesday and Koke travel to Houston next week after passing through Malaga. Sign up to 2013 and receive a salary of around a million euros. In his farewell to Aris Koke was seen very excited, as you can see in the picture.

 

Here's a video of Koke's Wednesday afternoon's press conference where Koke announced his departure from Aris FC.

For those of you who were wondering, Koke can play either as a forward, center-attacking midfielder, or, if needed, on the wing, all areas the Dynamo could use reinforcements.

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Dynamo Transactions: Aris FC Confirm Koke's Release From Team

In an official press release just before lunch, Aris FC announced the release of forward Sergio Koke from the team.  

The release states:

Termination of collaboration with Sergio Koke04/13/1911 19:48

ARIS FC announces the termination of cooperation with the footballer Sergio Koke to continue his career in MLS.


FC Aris Sergio Koke thanked for his contribution to date and his substantial contribution over the last five years the rise of the club. He wished success to follow his career and every personal happiness for himself and his family.

(Note: This is translated from Google, original text here .)

While the Dynamo have not yet officially made any sort of announcement, the pieces seem to be falling in place for Koke to make his move to MLS.

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Dynamo Transactions: Koke To Receive $1.74 Million Per Year

Some additional reports are starting to make the rounds, corroborating early reports that the Houston Dynamo are in fact on track to sign Koke.

The newest information indicates that Aris is in support of the move due to the forward's large contract with the Greek soccer club. If a deal is made with the Dynamo, Aris will have an extra €500,000 for this season, and will save €800,000 for both 2012 and 2013 (Koke's earnings per season).

If Koke signs with Houston, it is rumored that he will make approximately $1.74 million (€1.2 million) per season.

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Dynamo Transactions: Houston To Sign Spanish Forward Koke As DP?

The rumor mill is in full swing, but according to reports from the Greek newspaper, The Gazetta, the Houston Dynamo are looking to make a move for Spanish striker Sergio Contreras Pardo, aka Koke.

Koke, a 27-year-old striker, currently plays for Aris of the Greek Super League and has allegedly asked the club to allow him to make the move to Major League Soccer.

Koke has previously played for Malaga (Spain) and Marseille (France) before joining Aris. The forward has scored 38 goals in 175 appearances for Aris.

There's no doubt that the Dynamo need to bolster their options at forward, especially with the continued injury struggles of Brian Ching. Koke seems to be the type of player who could help Houston and add depth up top. If this move is going to be made, it needs to happen quickly, as MLS' transfer window closes at the end of Friday, May 15.

This move is also interesting because it shows the Dynamo Front Office's intention of signing a quality Designated Player over one who will just make a marketing splash.

We will be sure to update this story as it develops. In the mean time, check out this video of highlights from Koke's time with Aris.

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