The Full 90

Decision on Matt Besler’s future in KC could come by end of weekend

Sporting KC goalkeeper Eric Kronberg (1) was congratulated by Sporting KC defender Matt Besler (5) after Kronberg made a save in the first half during the Sporting Kansas City and Columbus Crew Major League Soccer match at Sporting Park on Sunday, May 4, 2014 in Kansas City, Kansas.
Sporting KC goalkeeper Eric Kronberg (1) was congratulated by Sporting KC defender Matt Besler (5) after Kronberg made a save in the first half during the Sporting Kansas City and Columbus Crew Major League Soccer match at Sporting Park on Sunday, May 4, 2014 in Kansas City, Kansas. The Kansas City Star

The future of Sporting Kansas City defender Matt Besler may be decided as soon as this weekend, his agent said on Thursday, but there’s still work to be done. Things can change. They often do in contract negotiations.

But if — and it remains a big if — Besler stays with Sporting, he said Friday it would likely be for the long-term.

“If I do sign a contract with Sporting, I think both sides will be showing they’re committing to each other very seriously and for the long-term future,” Besler said.

Eddie Rock, Besler’s agent, said talks between his client and Sporting KC have reached “an advanced stage” and could see a resolution by the end of the weekend.

A source told The Star on Thursday that Besler would prefer a long-term contract with Sporting KC to an overseas transfer, and Sporting Club CEO Robb Heineman told The Star, “We’ve always had a strong sense that we want to have Matt back. Now we’re getting a strong sense that he wants to be back.”

But while Besler may prefer to stay in Kansas City, the teams aren’t yet on the verge of reaching an agreement, Heineman said.

Using The Star’s report as a reference point, some websites reported Friday that Besler’s preference to stay in Kansas City means he will be back. That isn’t necessarily the case — at least not yet.

“I would just say there’s a lot of stuff out on the Internet,” Besler said. “The Internet is a funny thing sometimes, how it works. I would just say don’t believe everything you read on the Internet.”

Besler didn’t confirm or deny his interest in staying home, instead reiterating that the decision lies as much with Sporting KC as it does with him.

Besler is under contract through the 2015 season, so the team can opt to reject any transfer fee bid it receives.

Heineman emphasized that point Thursday when asked if there was a timeline for when contract talks with Besler may conclude.

“Well, he’s under contract for the next 18 months, so I would say that’s our deadline,” Heineman replied.

Besler has played the past two matches for Sporting KC, which will take a five-match unbeaten streak into Saturday’s tilt with the LA Galaxy. He plans to be in uniform once again.

“Right now I’m under contract with Sporting Kansas City. I’m fully committed to this club. I think I’ve shown that in the past two games,” Besler said. “Guys can approach it in different ways. If guys are looking to get transferred, a lot of times you will see them sit out because they don’t want to get injured. I think I’ve proved I’m not doing that at all. I’m fully committed to this team, and I want to try and win. That’s really all I care about right now.”

To reach Sam McDowell, call 816-234-4869 or send email to smcdowell@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter: @SamMcDowell11.

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