The Portland Timbers traded away one of their more popular players on Monday, sending central defender Mamadou “Futty” Danso to the Montreal Impact for a second-round pick in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft.
The trade came on the day that a report surfaced that the Timbers have made a significant offer to former Manchester City defender Joleon Lescott.
Danso, 31, joined the Timbers in 2009 when the club was still in the second division of American professional soccer. His departure means Kalif Alhassan is the only current Timber who has been with the club since before it joined Major League Soccer in 2011.
“A move like this with such a well-liked and respected player is never easy, but as we look to strengthen the group in the summer, we needed to create roster and cap flexibility,” Timbers general manager Gavin Wilkinson said.
A native of The Gambia, Danso played in 60 MLS games for the Timbers, scoring four goals and adding one assist. Danso played in 100 matches for the Timbers overall.
“On behalf of the entire Timbers organization I would like to thank Futty for his immense contributions to this organization both on and off the field,” Wilkinson said.
Taylor Twellman, a former MLS MVP and currently a commentator for ESPN, reported on Twitter that the Timbers have offered Lescott a deal worth more than $2 million a year. That would make Lescott the highest paid defender in MLS.
Lescott, 31, also has offers from at least two Barclay’s Premier League teams, West Ham United and Queens Park Rangers, according to reports in England.
Lescott, 6-foot-2, has made 26 appearances with England’s national team.
Though limited to eight league appearances in 2013-14 for the Barclay’s Premier League champions, Lescott was a regular during Manchester City’s run to the 2012 BPL title.
Three Thorns called to national team — Portland Thorns players Alex Morgan, Allie Long and Tobin Heath will join the U.S. women’s national team for matches June 14 and 19 against France.
Morgan, who might make her season debut for the Thorns on Saturday against Western New York, has not played since an ankle injury in the fall.
Long made her national team debut last month.
Heath, who also plays for Paris Saint-Germain in the top French women’s league, is expected to join the Thorns after these two exhibition games against France.