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Claim from Waivers vs. waiting and approaching


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Isn't there a hierachy until the player clears waivers? As in, a lower placed team would have rights to claim over a higher placed team. Once the player clears waivers he can sign with any club.

At least, that's roughly the way it works in other leagues such as the NBA and NFL.

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So, A player is released by a team through waivers. Until a player clears waivers, all teams have the option of claiming that player through waivers with lowest record teams trumping higher (if more than one team attempts to claim). But if no one claims the player, that player has then "cleared waivers" and you can "approach to sign". At this point, the player (I believe) is now unemployed and can decide if he likes your offer or not. When claiming from waivers the player does not have an option (as far as I know), but the contract continues...Im just not sure who pays on the contract.

Does claiming from waivers exempt the "claiming" team from paying on the contract through end of season?

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Now I am not 100% sure, not an MLS fan, but from other American sports, if you claim them from Waivers then you take over the contract as it stands with the exact clauses they had at the previous club, if you wait and then approach, you offer them a new contract. If they are picked from waivers the old club has no responsibility to pay them, but if they clear waivers I believe they have to pay out their contract (And get some sort of salary cap hit, depends on the leagues actual rule around this, each sport deals with it slightly differently), or pay the difference between any new contract and the old contract.

Now it may be different in MLS, but this is pretty much the way it works in other American sports.

Further notes from MLS website...

(A) WAIVERS

Teams may waive players based on performance at any time during the MLS season. Players with guaranteed contracts will continue to have their salary budget charge applied to the team salary budget, subject to any settlement. Players on semi-guaranteed contracts can be waived prior to July 1 of any year and free up the corresponding budget space. If a player on a semi-guaranteed contract is waived after July 1, his salary budget charge will count against the team’s salary budget and the team waiving the player will not receive a replacement except under the normal player acquisition mechanisms. Any settlement amount will be charged to the team’s salary budget.

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It's always a gamble and one that club management deal with in real life in MLS. Generally I look to claim players who I feel are underpaid, or are close to the minimum (525 quid a week to start with). If they're a little overpaid or won't fit into my budget, I'll wait and try to approach them later. Like players in other leagues, the longer they go without playing, the lower the wage they'll ask for. Of course, by declining the waiver option you're also opening up the possibility that they'll be picked up by an overseas club for even more.

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