Joao Plata looks set to remain at Real Salt Lake for at least the medium-term future, with the club purchasing his contract, RSL communications confirmed today. He'd previously been owned by multiple parties, which isn't uncommon among South and Central American players.
Multiple party ownership involves one or more third parties having rights on a player — the club and the player being the other parties involve. It's something FIFA has taken a stand against in recent years, and the English Premier League and France's Ligue 1 ban it outright. Third-party ownership muddies the waters of a player's contract and financial rights, but it does often spell a payday for the parties initially involved.
With that in mind, Real Salt Lake has bought Plata's rights outright, and those rights would disappear following the expiry of Plata's contract. It's a move that gives Plata a better chance for long-term success, and it gives the club and MLS a chance to see a financial windfall if he nets a significant transfer fee at any point in his future.
More on Plata's status as it becomes available, but it's exciting to see proactive moves to keep a player with that much promise here in the long-term. A new contract would certainly see a salary increase for Plata, who was potentially the best bargain in MLS in 2014 — he made only $70,000 guaranteed compensation, according to the MLS Players Union salary release from September.