The New England Revolution are interested in acquiring Stoke City attacking midfielder Bojan Krkic, according to Frank Dell’Appa of the Boston Globe.
Dell’Appa revealed on Twitter last week that the Revolution tried to make a move for the midfielder previously, but both sides couldn’t reach a deal due to salary because of salary reasons. However, the next day Dell’Appa said that the deal was still on and that salary concerns were not the issue.
.@NERevolution made a play for @BoKrkic but salary too high, etc. Could still happen but deal complicated, according to sources.
— Frank Dell’Apa (@frankdellapa) June 29, 2018
.@BoKrkic to @NERevolution still on – not about the $$, I’m told
— Frank Dell’Apa (@frankdellapa) July 1, 2018
The 27-year-old, who goes by his first name Bojan, rose up through the historic FC Barcelona youth system known as La Masia and played in 104 games for the Catalan giants from 2007-2011 and scored 26 goals. He later spent time in Italy with AS Roma and AC Milan, where seven goals in 33 games and three goals in 19 games, before resigning with Barcelona in 2013 and going on loan to Dutch side Ajax.
Krkic then moved to the English Premier League side Stoke City in 2014 where he rejuvenated his career. The Spanish international scored 14 goals in 54 games for Stoke, before going on two unsuccessful loan spells to Germany with Mainz in 2017 and back in Spain with Deportivo Alavés for the 2017-18 season. He scored once in 11 games for Mainz and failed to find the back of the net in 13 games for Alavés.
On the international level, Krkic only featured for Spain once in his career in 2008, but represented Cataluyna seven times from 2007-2014 and scored six goals. Krkic won a lot of trophies during his spell at Barcelona, including three La Liga titles, two Copa Del Rey titles, and two UEFA Champions League titles. While in Spain’s youth system, he won the UEFA U-17 European Championship in 2007 and the UEFA U-21 European Championship 2011. He also won the Dutch league title with Ajax in 2014.
While he spent last season on loan, Krkic is still employed by Stoke City, who will now play in the English Football League Championship after suffering relegation from the Premier League in 2018. With Stoke heading down, it is likely that Krkic would prefer a move away from the club to continue playing soccer at an elite level. With his skill and experience, along with the departure of Lee Nguyen, Krkic would be a great fit for the Revolution. He would most likely be a Designated Player for New England and this move would make sense consider Brad Friedel’s earlier comments that the Revolution wanted to add another DP to the roster.
With salary reportedly not an issue in the deal, many speculated that the deal stalled due to Krkic not wanting to play on Gillette Stadium’s turf field. The turf field debate is a hotly contested debate, with many players complaining about Gillette’s turf surface with some players even flat-out refusing to play games on turf fields. It is unclear whether the Revolution’s playing surface is a setback to completing the deal, but with no soccer-specific stadium for New England on the horizon, it could end up being a deal breaker if the issue arises.