Nashville SC announced Wednesday their roster decisions heading into the 2020 offseason. 26 players from their inaugural season will return in 2021.
From the club’s release:
“Nashville has exercised the contract options on goalkeeper Elliot Panicco, defenders Jalil Anibaba and Alistair Johnston, midfielders Brian Anunga, Handwalla Bwana, Matt LaGrassa, Luke Haakenson and Taylor Washington, and forwards Dominique Badji, Abu Danladi and Daniel Ríos.
Defenders Brayan Beckeles, Tanner Dieterich and Ken Tribbett, midfielder Alan Winn and already announced forward Cameron Lancaster will all be out of contract at the end of the year. Eric Miller is currently out of contract, however Nashville SC is currently in negotiations with the defender on a new contract.
Nashville SC has 15 players contractually guaranteed for the 2021 season: goalkeeper Brady Scott, defenders Dan Lovitz, Miguel Nazarit, Walker Zimmerman and Jack Maher, midfielders Aníbal Godoy, Randall Leal, Dax McCarty, Hany Mukhtar, Alex Muyl and Derrick Jones, and forwards David Accam and Jhonder Cádiz.
Additionally, Nashville SC has extended the contracts of goalkeeper Joe Willis and defender Dave Romney. Willis and Romney join Walker Zimmerman with contract extensions, as Nashville SC locks in the best expansion defense in MLS history.“
No real surprises among the departing players. Beckeles, Dieterich, Tribbett, and Winn had a combined nine appearances and 361 minutes.
Dieterich was the 28th overall pick in the 2020 SuperDraft, but didn’t make an appearance for Nashville before joining USL League One side Chattanooga Red Wolves in August.
Brayan Beckeles was signed from Olimpia in Honduras with an impressive resume, but managed just 81 minutes in two matches this season. He’ll be 35 next week.
Ken Tribbett was a fixture in Nashville’s 2019 USL side, but was unavailable for nearly the entirety of the 2020 season with injuries.
Alan Winn played in seven MLS matches this season, including one start, but was an inconsistent presence in the matchday squads.
Nashville SC will return the majority of their squad for next season. 15 of the returning players were on guaranteed contracts for 2021. This includes Miguel Nazarit, who made a single appearance on the bench, and David Accam, who was limited to under 300 minutes with injury.
Nashville exercised contract options on an additional 11 players, including four players signed from USL. Nashville also exercised options on Jalil Anibaba, a veteran MLS defender who was one of just three players to wear the captains armband this season.
Nashville will have the opportunity to add players immediately following MLS Cup, when a half-day transfer window will open from 8 AM CT to noon on December 13. The next window will open after the expansion draft on December 15.
Goalkeepers (3): Joe Willis, Elliot Panicco, Brady Scott
Defenders (7): Jalil Anibaba, Alistair Johnston, Dan Lovitz, Jack Maher, Miguel Nazarit, Dave Romney, and Walker Zimmerman
Midfielders (11): Brian Anunga, Handwalla Bwana, Aníbal Godoy, Luke Haakenson, Derrick Jones, Matt LaGrassa, Randall Leal, Dax McCarty, Hany Mukhtar, Alex Muyl, and Taylor Washington
Forwards (5): David Accam, Dominique Badji, Abu Danladi, Jhonder Cádiz and Daniel Ríos.
Under contract (15): David Accam, Jhonder Cádiz, Aníbal Godoy, Derrick Jones, Randall Leal, Dan Lovitz, Jack Maher, Dax McCarty, Hany Mukhtar, Alex Muyl, Miguel Nazarit, Dave Romney, Brady Scott, Joe Willis, Walker Zimmerman
Out of contract (6): Brayan Beckeles, Tanner Dieterich, Cameron Lancaster, Eric Miller, Ken Tribbett, Alan Winn
Contract options exercised (11): Jalil Anibaba, Brian Anunga, Dominique Badji, Handwalla Bwana, Abu Danladi, Luke Haakenson, Alistair Johnston, Matt LaGrassa, Elliot Panicco, Daniel Rios, Taylor Washington
Contract options not exercised (0): N/A
In negotiations (1): Eric Miller