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Loons agree to new contract with Bakaye Dibassy, with Robin Lod ‘hopeful’ to be next

Dibassy, who is guaranteed compensation is $743,125 this year, also has been versatile, chipping in at left back due to injuries and absences

MLS: Real Salt Lake at Minnesota United FC
Minnesota United defender Bakaye Dibassy (12) stops a Real Salt Lake pass in the first half Sunday, July 3, 2022, at Allianz Field in St. Paul.
Matt Blewett / USA Today Sports
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Minnesota United is working toward new contracts with two core players.

Left-sided center back Bakaye Dibassy has agreed to a new deal with the Loons, a source told the Pioneer Press. Plus, MNUFC and midfielder Robin Lod are “very close” and “hopeful” an extension can be reached, manager Adrian Heath and Lod shared Wednesday.

“I really enjoy my time here,” said Lod, a native of Finland. “I really enjoy playing in Allianz Field in front of our great fans. Yeah, hopefully we get something (done).”

Lod, who second on the team with six goals in 2022, has displayed wider versatility this season, playing as a right winger and striker but also in central midfield during Sunday’s 3-2 victory over Salt Lake and versus New York City in late May.

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“He’s got a great feel for the game; it doesn’t matter where you play him, he contributes,” Heath said.

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Lod, 29, has played 70 regular-season games with Minnesota since 2019; he was acquired in a transfer from Sporting Dijon in the Spanish Segunda Division. Lod’s guaranteed compensation was listed at $952,496 for 2022, per MLS Players’ Association figures shared in April.

Lod, a mainstay member of the Finland national team, led Minnesota with nine goals in 2021 and he is the leading scorer in MNUFC’s MLS era with 22 goals.

Dibassy, 32, has played in 54 regular-season games for MNUFC after a transfer from Amiens in France’s Ligue 1 in 2020; the Frenchman was brought in when 2019 MLS Defender of the Year Ike Opara was sidelined by concussions.

Dibassy, who is guaranteed compensation is $743,125 this year, also has been versatile this year, chipping in at left back due to injuries and absences in the season’s early stages.

Heath, who has 12 selections for the MLS All-Star Game at Allianz Field on Aug. 10, has mentioned Lod and Dibassy as two players he is considering for the 26-player squad.

MLS: Real Salt Lake at Minnesota United FC
Minnesota United midfielder Robin Lod (17) challenges Real Salt Lake midfielder Pablo Ruiz (6) in the first half Sunday, July 3, 2022, at Allianz Field in St. Paul.
Matt Blewett / USA Today Sports

On top of versatility, Lod and Dibassy have been ultra reliable. They have played in 17 of 18 total MLS games this season.

Starters sick

Kemar Lawrence and Joseph Rosales were ill and missed Wednesday’s training session in Blaine, putting the status of two projected starters up in the air for Friday night’s game against the Whitecaps in Vancouver.

“As a precaution we kept them at home,” Heath said Wednesday. “We’ll see how they are later” when the team flies to British Columbia.

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Backup center back Nabi Kibunguchy also is ill.

Briefly

MNUFC2 goalkeeper Fred Emmings is recuperating from a concussion suffered last Thursday. …The MLS summer transfer window opens Thursday, putting backup goalkeeper Tyler Miller’s future on the front burner. Miller, who is out of contract at year’s end, started the first two games of the season into early March but hasn’t play in MLS since then. The Loons have heard trade requests for Miller. … Niko Hansen (thigh) is progressing in his rehab and did some ball work on the side Wednesday. … Romain Metanire is in the fourth week of rehab from a hamstring setback vs. Paderborn on June 11. The Frenchman has been expected to be out 6-10 weeks. … Kervin Arriaga (ankle) has been wearing a protective boot since he suffered ligament damage vs. L.A. Galaxy on June 29. He is projected to miss 2-4 weeks. With Arriaga out and Rosales possibly unavailable Friday, Lod might start again in midfield vs. Vancouver.

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