New Zealand international defender Bill Tuiloma has reportedly been traded by his Portland Timbers club to MLS rivals Charlotte FC.
Auckland-born Tuiloma (27) will move 3,800kms from the west coast of the United States to play for east coast side Charlotte who joined the Major Soccer League as an expansion franchise in 2019.
That was two years after Tuiloma began his 112-match stint with the Timbers, for whom he scored 10 goals.
Former Birkenhead United player Tuiloma has played 31 games for the All Whites after representing New Zealand at U-17, U-20 and U-23 levels.
Oregon Live reporter Ryan Clarke reports the Timbers will receive a payment of US$800,000 in General Allocation Money and US$100,000 more based on incentives.
Clarke writes that the Timbers sought the move to gain flexibility in their salary cap as the club has a significant amount tied up with veteran contracts.
Charlotte FC confirmed the trade would deliver US$500,000 GAM in 2023 and US$300,000 GAM in 2024.
Additionally, the deal includes another US$100,000 GAM in conditional GAM in 2025 if certain performance metrics are achieved.
Portland retain a 15% share of any future sale outside of the MLS.
“We are excited to welcome Bill to Charlotte FC as we keep adding strong pieces to a competitive roster for 2023 and beyond
“He is a defender who adds valuable experience to the team with over 100 appearances across five full seasons in MLS, as well as significant time with the New Zealand national team.
“Bill is a player that is used to winning in Major League Soccer and has been an important member on a perennial playoff contender.
“We look forward to adding his leadership in the locker room to continue building a winning culture here in the Carolinas.”
Meanwhile, Portland general manager Ned Grabavoy said:
“This was not an easy decision for us as a club – Bill is a great player with tremendous character.
“This move is a reflection of our challenges to keep a majority of our roster intact over the course of many seasons. We are grateful for Bill’s contributions to the club, and we are all wishing him nothing but the best with this new opportunity.”