As promised, New York City FC has finally revealed a third and final designated player (DP) to accompany Frank Lampard's long-awaited arrival in July.
Forget Daniele De Rossi. Forget Xavi Hernandez.
Hell, while we're at it, let's forget Adam Nemec.
Yes, the signing is official, and he's reasonably well-known: former DC United and Colorado Rapids defender Mike Petke.
"I hadn't realized that Mike was a free agent, and that's definitely my bad," NYCFC Sporting Director Claudio Reyna said at today's surprise press conference. "Major League Soccer's roster rules are incredibly convoluted. It's like an episode of Lost: everyone acts like they understand what's going on, but really they're just being smug assholes."
Petke projects to bolster a back line that has been wracked by injuries. Defenders Jason Hernandez, Josh Williams, and Javier Calle have all missed time. Additionally, right fullback and Manchester City loanee Shay Facey sprinted away from the team hotel two weeks ago in Chicago whilst reportedly howling directly at the moon and complaining about the devil himself being "all up on [his] jock."
Shay Facey's current location is unknown.
On this exciting day for New York City Football Club, let's get to know the new signing:
NAME: Michael Elizabeth Petke
D.O.B.: 30 January 1976 (Age 39)
BIRTHPLACE: Bohemia, Suffolk County, New York
PREVIOUS CLUB(S): DC United, Colorado Rapids
NICKNAMES: Air Jordan, The Rooster, Queen Elizabeth, Grey Worm, The Pet-Keymaster
When asked about concerns over Petke's age, NYC head coach Jason Kreis was quick to assuage any unease. "I'm not worried about Mike being 39," the former Real Salt Lake gaffer remarked. "I mean, Ned Grabavoy -- who has had many names throughout the millennia -- is downright ancient. One day, he will diffuse into pure energy and return to the halls of Valhalla. Until then, he's ours, and that's fine."
For Petke himself, today was a day of unbridled excitement. "I'm overjoyed to be the newest member of New York City FC. Honestly, I feel like the prettiest girl at the dance," he said. "To have a team playing Major League Soccer in my home state is a dream come true. Once I saw that R.J. Allen signed last week, I was so jealous that I literally threw up. R.J. is really that dude. But now it's all full-circle, and I couldn't be more excited."
Given MLS's dense morass of roster rules, Petke will not be available for first-team selection until the summer, once Don Garber and the league's Board of Templars have migrated downstream to their ancestral spawning grounds. Once the Great Spawning is complete, Petke will be added to NYCFC's active roster.
Until then, the new signing will play first-team minutes with NYCFC's USL Pro affiliate, Wilmington Hammerheads.
Added Petke: "I think I can contribute right away. I'm just so, so glad I finally have an opportunity to play a home game that really feels like home. I can't help it-- I love New York!"
"We can't wait to get him out there," Reyna beamed. "Jason and I have had our eye on him for days, if not a whole week. He's a really special player, the kind who, if he plays his cards right, could probably be a manager like Jason some day."
EDITOR'S NOTE: This is a work of satire, and is not meant to reflect events that have actually occurred (that we know of).