The San Antonio Scorpions of the North American Soccer League* have acquired the rights to Walter Restrepo from the Fort Lauderdale Strikers in a move that wouldn’t normally be newsworthy. However, the official press release appeared to suggest that the Strikers received more than just money in the deal.
The soccer blog 90MinutesStrong.com noticed at the end of the Scorpions’ announcement that the team president thanked two businesses that sponsor the club, noting that “it was only through their assistance that [the club was] able to get this deal done.” One of the business partners was a hotel and the other was a limo service.
This led to speculation in several media outlets that Restrepo was traded to the Scorpions in exchange for free hotel rooms and free transportation for the Strikers next time they travel to San Antonio for a match.
A source with knowledge of the deal told Business Insider that travel considerations were indeed part of the transaction. However, that was just one element of the transfer.
While the source could not go into further details, it would appear that the transfer fee offered by the Scorpions was not big enough for the Strikers. At that point Scorpions may have turned to their business partners and asked them to help sweeten the pot to get the deal done.
*The North American Soccer League is considered the second division of the United States soccer system, just under Major League Soccer.
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