NYCFC trades forward Khiry Shelton to Sporting KC
Sporting Kansas City acquired former No. 2 MLS draft pick Khiry Shelton from New York City FC in a trade for right-back Saad Abdul-Salaam on Thursday.
Shelton, 24, has scored six goals with 10 assists in 54 regular-season appearances since NYCFC took him with its first-ever draft pick in 2015 out of Oregon State.
"Khiry is a player whose intangibles always stood out to us, even as we had followed him from early in his college years," Sporting KC manager Peter Vermes said in a statement.
Shelton played in the Olympic qualifier with the U.S. under-23 teams, and he received a call-up to the senior squad for January camp in 2016. But he was limited to just three starts and one goal last season for NYCFC.
The forward will join SKC as a replacement for Latif Blessing, whom Los Angeles FC selected in the expansion draft on Tuesday.
To that end, The Kansas City Star reported on Tuesday that SKC is also near a deal to add French attacking midfielder Yohan Croizet from Belgian side KV Mechelen.
Abdul-Salaam, 26, was taken 10 picks after Shelton in the 2015 draft and made 64 appearances for Sporting KC, but he lost his starting spot in 2017 as Graham Zusi converted to his position at right-back.
He could also find playing time hard to come by at NYCFC, who a day earlier signed another right-back in Sweden international Anton Tinnerholm.
"Abdul-Salaam is an experienced player in this league and he's coming to our team hungry for success," NYCFC coach Patrick Vieira said. "I'm really happy to have added another quality player who can help the team to be successful."
Also on Thursday, NYCFC signed goalkeeper Brad Stuver from Columbus Crew SC in exchange for a fourth-round draft pick in 2019. He'll challenge Sean Johnson and Andre Rawls for playing time next season.
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