Cosmos, Fire, Sounders target Liga veteran Sergio Ballesteros


According to reports out of Spain, the New York Cosmos are engaging in their first bidding war of the offseason. Their competition? MLS sides Seattle Sounders and the Chicago Fire. The target? La Liga veteran Sergio Ballesteros.

Ballesteros, 37, is a career Liga centerback who has featured with clubs Levante, Villarreal and Mallorca. He’s a two time Intertoto Cup winner with Villarreal and was part of Spain’s 1998 European U-21 Championship team. He is also a longtime captain with Levante.

The 6’2″ centerback has developed a reputation over the years as a tough-as-nails defender, unafraid to toss his hulking 205 lb. frame at opposing attackers.

Super Deporte out of Spain indicates that both the Chicago Fire and the Seattle Sounders have expressed interest in the defender while initial conversations have already begun with the Cosmos group.

The Cosmos have been a busy buyer and window shopper of league talent having acquired both Villarreal veteran Marcos Senna and Tenerife’s Ayoze Garcia during the offseason. Liga veteran Mikel Alonso, older brother of Real Madrid star Xabi Alonso, is also on their wish list.

While respected as a player and professional, Ballesteros was recently accused of taking part in the world-wide match-fixing scandal that has tainted so many FIFA clubs. Then teammate Javier Barkero accused the defender and three of his veteran teammates of throwing a 4-0 loss against relegation-destined Deportivo.

The allegations were never substantiated.

Citing an interest in one final footballing experience before he retires, Deportes also claims Ballesteros would come at a reduced price for either the Cosmos or their competing MLS sides.

Ballesteros will be 38 in September.

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  • jspech

    a wish for NASL & Cosmos:
    seriously: a very interesting question you keep asking, proving that
    NASL is a threat to MLS, especially in regards to the Cosmos.

    reason: few years ago, just a short few, the conversation was about NASL v. USLpro, now it’s about NASL v. MLS. How did it reach this point?
    BTW: If NASL is serious about competing as a top flight league, then they should be the one that fill that new talked about Soccer Stadium in downton LA, instead of Chivas US (/rebranded).
    NASL: should hopefully brand team LA Aztec, now we are talking National TV contract (LA Aztec v. NY Cosmos & all in between)

    Why this can happen:
    Can’t see MLS awarding a 3rd LA team
    Moving Chivas USA there w/o rebranding makes no sense.
    Galaxy ( no go)

    Hopefully NASL are at least sticking there nose in there.