When it comes to player signings, apparently when it rains it pours. In the last few weeks, the Oakland Roots have added Alejandro Fuenmayor, a central defender who played most recently for MLS’s Houston Dynamo, brought back fan-favorite and 2021 Player of the Season Emrah Klimenta, and engaged in talks with Edgardo Rito, a right-sided player who spent last season at Patriotas Boyacá, of the Columbian top division.
Now reports out of Poland suggests the Roots are close to adding forward Dariusz Formella to their ranks:
Club sources wouldn’t confirm the Polish reporting, but would only say that the club has made an approach to Formella.
Roots fans will remember Formella (who goes by “Darek,” not Dariusz, according to his twitter profile and ESPN+ announcers) as a member of Sacramento Republic FC. Formella appeared in 27 matches last season, including starting all four of Sacramento’s games against Oakland. Formella notched 7 goals and 3 assists on the season, with 2 of those goals coming against Oakland, including Republic’s lone goal in Oakland’s critical 2-1 win late in the season. Here are the full highlights of that game, which we will post given any excuse to do so:
Formella played only 14 matches for Republic in 2020, but notched 8 goals in that time, and was voted season MVP by the team and staff. He got his start in senior soccer at the age of 17 (!) for Polish giant Lech Poznań, and will be, if he signs, the only Root with UEFA Champions League experience. After some loan spells at mid-table Ekstraklasa sides, Formella took a permanent move to then-second-division side Raków Częstochowa, before moving shortly thereafter to Sacramento Republic, where he has played for the last 3 years.
Adding Formella would address one glaring weak spot in Oakland’s current roster: the front line, which brings back only two members of last year’s squad (plus Project 51O members). Whether or not the smoke around Formella truly indicates fire, we expect Roots will be active in talking to forwards in the coming weeks.