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Fredy Montero heading to Sporting Lisbon?

Jun 27, 2013, 3:10 PM EDT

fredy montero AP

Fans of the Seattle Sounders, it seems like you can start, officially, waving goodbye to Fredy Montero.

The 25-year-old Colombian striker has spent the last six months on loan at Millonairos, but he is edging closer to a permanent transfer away from Seattle as Portuguese powerhouse Sporting Lisbon are in advanced negotiations with the MLS franchise.

News broke earlier today that Montero may be heading abroad on a five-year deal and according to reports Sounders GM Adrian Hanauer did little to dispel the rumors. Although there are still plenty of hurdles to overcome.

Montero’s situation is a bizarre one. He is still a Seattle player but everyone knew that when he left for Colombia, the Sounders franchise-leading scorer was moving away on loan to try and get into the Colombian national team picture.

But since arriving at Millonairos, Montero has scored just seven goals in 25 games and hasn’t exactly performed the way many thought he would. However Montero’s other motive in moving to Millonairos was to try and catapult himself to Europe and it seems as though he may get his wish.

Obviously negotiations between Seattle and Sporting Lisbon are still ongoing but with Hanauer admitting a deal is being brokered, how should Sounders fans feel about this deal?

(MORE: Montero says goodbye to Seattle in emotional open letter)

Confused and perhaps slightly upset. But ultimately accepting. At the end of the day, some Sounders fans may have harbored believes that Montero could actually return to CenturyLink after his loan at Millonairos. Montero was handed a new multi-year contract and is still a Seattle player. But nobody really expected him to return. The fact the Seattle loaned him out and gave him a new contract at the same time just acted to protect their own interests.

Now, that move seems like a smart one as Sporting are set to swoop for his signature. The deal should work well for everyone and for Montero it is last-chance saloon as he tries to squirm into José Pekerman’s Columbia squad that are performing well in CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying. Los Cafeteros are second in the table with four games to go in the fall, they should reach their first World Cup since 1998 and Fredy wants to be part of it.

What type of transfer fee could Seattle get for Montero? We will have to wait and see. But the front office won’t just hand over their prized asset for a miserly fee. However Sporting Lisbon have been in financial difficulties of late and had to offload striker Ricky van Wolfswinkel to Norwich City.

So there’s a spot for Montero to fill straight away. Hopefully he gets the chance to shine in European soccer, he has craved it for quite some time. Stay tuned on this one folks.

  1. dws110 - Jun 27, 2013 at 6:26 PM

    As one Sounders fan, I’m happy for Fredy. I hate to see him leave for good, but all the best to him in Portugal.

  2. talgrath - Jun 27, 2013 at 6:54 PM

    I don’t think Montero leaving was just about him trying to get on his nation’s team. Montero hasn’t scored a goal for the Sounders in the playoffs yet, nor does he have an assist; given that the team has gone to the playoffs every year since their entry in to MLS, that’s a lot of playoff games without a goal or an assist. Montero has also been something of a streaky striker, frequently when he scored Montero would score a brace and look like a hero, and he’d look great for multiple games, but then he’d go on a run without a goal where he looked half-hearted or worn out. I think that the GM felt that a change was necessary and Montero felt that he should be moving on to bigger, better things. Personally, I’d rather have a consistent, if lesser, striker up front than an unpredictable wild card; if Montero can iron out the issues he has though, he’ll be amazing. If Montero is heading to Lisbon, or elsewhere in Europe, I wish him the best of luck.

    • dws110 - Jun 27, 2013 at 7:29 PM

      Too much is made of Montero’s lack of productivity in the playoffs, and not enough is made of Sigi’s terrible tactical choices in those same playoff games (remember the 4-5-1 horrorshow Sigi trotted out in LA last year, where Fredy was left to die a slow death alone up top?) Fredy was unjustly vilified after that series, right before the loan to Millonairos. As far as being a “streaky striker”, anyone who makes the lazy Fredy argument simply didn’t pay attention to the work he did off the ball, especially in his last season in Seattle.

      • talgrath - Jun 27, 2013 at 7:39 PM

        Don’t get me wrong, I like Montero, I just don’t think he is quite as good as many Sounders fans think he is. Yes, he did great work off of the ball as well as put in goals, but there were an awful lot of times when Montero just didn’t play well, not just in that final playoff series. When Montero didn’t have his confidence, when the rest of the team didn’t work perfectly, Montero rarely did well during those times. People forget that there were times Montero was benched for poor play, there were times when Montero just lacked that killer instinct to put the ball in the net. If I could get a fully in-form Montero for a full season of Sounders games, I would take him over any other striker in the league; but that wasn’t what the Sounders got out of him.

  3. charliej11 - Jun 28, 2013 at 8:07 AM

    Talgrath, couldn’t agree more and I have been a huge Sounder’s fan for 30+ years. He was benched, but the over zealous fans don’t seem to have a reason why.

    I love Montero, but we needed better and we got better with Martins. It doesn’t really matter if Seattle fans think FM was lazy or not, he was never coming back. Let’s just put it this way…Martins does more work than him, no question.

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