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Official: Kalil ElMedkhar homegrown rights traded to FC Dallas

The Philadelphia Union receives $50,000 in allocation, a percentage of any future sell-on fees and additional allocation money tied to performance metrics

Kalil ElMedkhar in a game for the Philadelphia Union U19s in April 2017
Matt Ralph

It’s official. Middletown, Del. native Kalil ElMedkhar has signed with FC Dallas on a two-year deal with three club options after the Philadelphia Union traded his homegrown rights.

The 21-year-old ElMedkhar, a 2017 graduate of YSC Academy, was expected to go in the first round of next week’s MLS SuperDraft but FC Dallas didn’t want to wait and see if he’d still be available with the 21st pick.

The Union will get $50,000 in general allocation money with the possibility of more depending on performance metrics and will also get a percentage of any future sell-on fee for the University of Kentucky standout.

The trade is a first for the Union, but opens up a new potential market of players from the Union Academy the team decides to pass on signing. Georgetown goalkeeper Tomas Romero is another potential target for other MLS teams interested in acquiring his homegrown rights.

Union Sporting Director Ernst Tanner has shown little interest for players who have spent time playing in college, opting to pass or trade SuperDraft picks and focus on recruiting top youth talent from around the country and signing players from the academy at younger ages.

Tanner has also shown a willingness to trade homegrowns in their early 20s for assets like previous trades within the league of Derrick Jones to Nashville SC and Auston Trusty to the Colorado Rapids.

ElMedkhar joined the Union Academy in their first season in the U.S. Development Academy in 2013 from Penn Fusion Academy and played locally with Kirkwood SC before that. He scored 20 goals and dished out 21 assists in 66 games during his college career at the University of Kentucky.

He was also a regular starter for Reading United in back-to-back runs to the USL League Two final in 2018 and 2019.