According to The Athletic, Nashville SC has traded a 2020 international slot and a large quantity of allocation money (in the vicinity of $1 million) for Los Angeles FC – and USMNT regular – centerback Walker Zimmerman.
When Paul Tenorio reports it, you have a matter not of “if” but “when,” as long as a deal doesn’t fall apart (the tricky “pending league and federation approval” clauses). That means Nashville SC is poised to pick up a 2019 MLS Best XI defender, and while the price is steep, a player of Zimmerman’s ability both defensively and with the ball at his feet seems to be worth that number.
Zimmerman is a native of the Atlanta area, and was draft out of Furman (also the alma mater of Clint Dempsey) after his sophomore year with the Paladins. He played his first five MLS seasons with FC Dallas before moving to LAFC in the past two years. He started 26 games in his first year with the expansion club, and put in his all-MLS shift last season.
The 26-year old strengthens an already-solid back line with probably the best possible available player from within the league (with the assumption that Ike Opara’s late-October contract extension with Minnesota United meant the wasn’t on the table along with Aaron Long seeming a develop-and-sell – for more than he’s getting offers now – prospect for the Red Bulls).