The Major League Soccer regular season ends on Sunday, a day known around the league as “Decision Day” because game results will determine the final few playoff spots.
It is also the day Inter Miami finds out if it will have the No. 1 or the No. 2 pick in the Nov. 19 MLS Expansion Draft and the college “SuperDraft” in early January.
Executives of Inter Miami and Nashville SC, the other 2020 expansion team, will be in New York City on Sunday for the MLS Expansion Priority Draft (3 p.m., MLSsoccer.com). It begins with a coin flip to see which team picks first among five roster-building methods and they alternate until all five have been chosen.
The winner of the coin flip chooses first among these five options:
1. No. 1 pick in 2019 MLS Expansion Draft
2. No. 1 pick in 2020 MLS SuperDraft (college)
3. No. 1 position in Allocation Ranking Order
4. Penultimate position in MLS Re-Entry and End-of-Year Waiver Order
5. Penultimate position in Discovery Player Ranking
More than likely, the team that wins the coin flip will choose the No. 1 pick in the Expansion Draft or the No. 1 pick in the college draft, and the other will get the second pick.
Confused yet? Here’s an explanation ...
The Expansion Draft, from which Miami and Nashville can select up to five players each, includes existing MLS players who have not been protected by their current teams. Each team can protect 12 players, and the list of available players will be released Nov. 16.
Five teams are exempt from providing players — D.C. United, Vancouver Whitecaps, FC Dallas, Houston Dynamo, and New York Red Bulls — because they lost players to FC Cincinnati in the 2018 Expansion Draft.
The SuperDraft is primarily for college players. The Allocation Ranking Order is the order in which teams can pick “Allocation” players, who include select U.S. men’s national team players, elite U.S. youth national team players, and former MLS players returning to the league after leaving for transfer fees of more than $500,000.
The Re-Entry Draft is for certain MLS players whose contract options were declined. Discovery Players are players teams keep on a list who don’t fall under other categories.
So far, Inter Miami has signed five young players — Julian Carranza and Matias Pellegrini of Argentina, Christian Makoun of Venezuela, David Norman Jr of Canada and Miami native George Acosta. The team has not yet announced its big-name “Designated Players’’ – Edinson Cavani of Paris St Germain and David Silva of Manchester City are among the players who are rumored to be in consideration. A coach is expected to be hired sometime before the end of October.