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Jhon Kennedy Hurtado could be an answer for Red Bulls

Jhon Kennedy Hurtado could very well wind up with the Red Bulls.Getty Images

Yes, the name is right. Jhon, not John.

Out with one Colombian central defender, and perhaps in with another.

The issues at the heart of the New York Red Bulls' defense might be addressed in the form of Jhon Kennedy Hurtado, a powerfully built Colombian. Metro New York has learned that Hurtado is set to go on trial with the team as the team continues its preseason preparations. In MLS since 2010, Hurtado spent the first four years of his MLS career with the Seattle Sounders before being traded away to the Chicago Fire, who then dealt him midseason to Chivas USA.

Set to turn 31-years-old this May, Hurtado has a green card and will not count as an international player.

This past offseason, the Red Bulls traded Jamison Olave to Real Salt Lake, sending the Colombian back to his original club in MLS. While the Red Bulls received a prominent piece of allocation money for Olave, they lost a stalwart of their central defense and a key part to their back four's organization. Currently, their likely centerback pairing includes Ronald Zubar, who last played with Ajaccio in France's Ligue 2, and Andrew Jean-Baptiste, who is young and promising but has been inconsistent.

In addition, Damien Perrinelle has been solid in preseason, and the young Matt Miazga, who starred in the U-20 national team's qualification for the World Cup.

Hurtado, who was among the best starting central defenders in the league while with Seattle, is solid in the air and his one-on-one defending and tidy in his distribution. He is currently available as a free agent.

 
 
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