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Miami, Nashville expansion draft set for Nov. 19

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno says a merger between MLS and Liga MX will not work because of the huge structural differences of the sport in the United States.

The 2019 MLS Expansion Draft will take place on Nov. 19, with Inter Miami CF and Nashville SC able to select five players each, the league announced on Thursday.

Each of the current 24 MLS team may protect up to 12 rostered players -- one more than in prior years -- from inclusion on the eligible players list. The complete list of players eligible for selection in the 2019 MLS Expansion Draft will be released on Saturday, Nov. 16.

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By ESPN Staff

Sources: Nashville SC signs Costa Rica's Leal

Randall Leal will join MLS expansion side Randall Leal.

Nashville SC has signed Costa Rica international and Deportivo Saprissa midfielder Randall Leal, league sources have told ESPN.

Leal's salary will be above the threshold for a Young Designated Player, but it is unclear if Targeted Allocation Money will be used to buy down his hit to the salary budget.

Leal, 22, is in his second season with Saprissa, having made 38 league and cup appearances while scoring six goals. He spent the previous three seasons with Belgian side KV Mechelen. In 2013, Leal...

Nashville signs Mukhtar as Designated Player

With MLS expected to announce Nashville as the next city for expansion, Jeff Carlisle explains how their expansion bid impressed the league.

Nashville SC, slated to begin play in MLS next season, has signed Brondby attacking midfielder Hany Mukhtar to a Designated Player contract.

Mukhtar, 24, will remain with Brondby on loan until January, at which point he will join Nashville for preseason. Sources tell ESPN that Nashville paid a transfer fee of around $2.85 million for Mukhtar's services, and the combination of the fee and his salary means TAM can't be used to bring him below the Designated Player threshold.

Nashville also sent $100,000...

Sources: Atleti's Juanfran wanted by MLS club

Atletico Madrid right-back Juanfran is wanted by MLS expansion franchise Nashville SC as well as Brazilian teams Corinthians and Sao Paulo, sources have confirmed to ESPN FC.

Having spent the past eight seasons with Atletico, Juanfran will leave the La Liga club when his contract expires at the end of the month. The defender is keen for his next move to be away from Spain, where he has also played for Real Madrid, Espanyol and Osasuna.

Nashville has explored the possibility of signing the former...

Nashville SC confirm Gary Smith as manager for debut MLS season: 'He builds teams that are hard to beat'

Nashville SC officially announced that it has named Gary Smith to be its manager of its MLS team, ahead of its debut next season.

CEO Ian Ayre, in an exclusive interview with ESPN FC, said he mined his contacts in Europe, looked to South America and scoured the U.S. in trying to find a manager. As it turned out, his top choice was already working right in front of him, as Smith has been managing the organization's USL team since the start of 2018.

"We never really saw anybody who blew us...