The New England Revolution have traded Benny Feilhaber to Sporting Kansas City for a first and second round draft choice, as well as allocation money. The trade lands Feilhaber, one of MLS's more skillful midfielders, in a midfield with Graham Zusi on one of the league's best teams, as Sporting try to add a MLS Cup to their 2012 U.S. Open Cup.
"Benny is an excellent two-way, box-to-box midfielder who has tremendous ability, especially with the final pass," Sporting KC Manager Peter Vermes said. "His experience with the US National Team programs and playing overseas will serve him well in our system."
Feilhaber was not going to return to New England for the 2013 season. He has an up and down season for the Revs, where he was relegated to bench duty late in the season. With a New England return out of the question, his options were to either move abroad or be traded. That considered, the Revolution did well to get a couple draft picks and allocation for Feilhaber.
Now Feilhaber gets a new start in Kansas City under Vermes, who has done well to keep players happy and motivated. Feilhaber and Vermes also have a relationship dating back to 2005 when Feilhaber played on the United States U-20 World Cup team that Vermes was an assistant coach on.
The big question for Sporting is how they fill out their midfield. Feilhaber and Zusi's passing and vision will make them deadly going forward, but Zusi is usually far up the pitch and Feilhaber's tackling leaves something to be desired, meaning Kansas City needs a defensive midfielder so slot in behind them and Roger Espinoza has left for Wigan. If they can find that defensive midfielder, Sporting may be able to make the jump from on of the league's best to MLS Cup champions.