The LA Galaxy midfield took a hit Wednesday with the team confirming the sale of midfielder Nigel de Jong to Turkish club Galatasaray. De Jong leaves after playing 18 games for the Galaxy, most of those as a central midfielder. The Dutch, World Cup veteran joined the Galaxy last offseason from AC Milan on a 1-year, $500,000 deal. By selling de Jong, LA avoids triggering a clause in his contract that would’ve made him a Designated Player for 2017 if he played in 23 games this season.
De Jong’s time in MLS was not without controversy. He came in with a reputation as a midfield enforcer and some felt his physical play was over the top this season. De Jong only picked up three yellow cards and a single red, but there were multiple incidents, including a well-publicized challenge on Darlington Nagbe, that drew criticism from fans and media alike.
The move does leave the Galaxy thin especially after the announcements that Jelle van Damme is out for two to three weeks with an MCL sprain and Gyasi Zardes could miss the rest of the season with a broken foot. Baggio Husidic is likely in line to take De Jong’s spot in central midfield while some combination of Mike Magee, Sebastian Lletget and Emmanuel Boateng will fill in for Zardes.
(Photo Cred: LA Galaxy)