The Galaxy and its president Chris Klein have been sanctioned by MLS for violating salary budget and roster guidelines related to the signing of Argentine forward Cristian Pavón during the 2019 season.
MLS alleged on Friday that the Galaxy entered into agreements that were not disclosed and that payments were not included in Pavone’s salary budget and roster category calculations. The undisclosed agreements and payments resulted in Pavone being classified as targeted-allocation money in 2019 when he should have occupied a designated player slot.
The Galaxy already had three designated players, the maximum under MLS rules, when they acquired Pavone on loan from Argentine club Boca Juniors.
According to the MLS Players Association, the annual value of Pavón’s contract in 2019 was reported to be $1.2 million. In 2020, this increased to $1.5 million. Pavone was signed by former Galaxy general manager Dennis Te Kloose, whose contract was not renewed after the 2021 season.
The penalty imposed against the Galaxy included a $1 million fine for the club and the loss of $1 million of available future general allocation money. The team will also be prohibited from registering a player who is required to obtain an International Transfer Certificate (ITC) from outside the United States and Canada during the secondary transfer window in 2023.
Additionally, Klein, team president since 2013, is suspended from any game-related responsibilities through the closure of the primary transfer window in 2023. During that time, coach Greg Vanni will be promoted to sporting director and will report directly to Dan Beckerman. Chairman and CEO of Galaxy’s parent company, AEG.
Also Te Kloese, who now works as general manager of Eredivisie club Feyenoord in his native Netherlands, must submit an application to the MLS commissioner’s office if he wishes to secure employment with an MLS club.
“From the outset, the LA Galaxy and AEG have cooperated fully with MLS to ensure a thorough and transparent process, and we accept the consequences and sanctions set forth in this decision,” the team said in a statement.