Striker Santiago Gonzalez of the Montreal Impact has been loaned out to Uruguayan side Danubio F.C. The club confirmed the loan in a press release.
The 22-year-old was the Impact’s only acquisition of note during the 2013 offseason, transferring in from Sud America, the Uruguayan’s hometown team. The Impact scouting staff believed Gonzalez would be an exciting player with a creative touch up front. Former Sporting Director Nick De Santis was especially fond of the youngster, saying at the time of his signing that Gonzalez – who can also play in the attacking midfielder – showed great potential and had a bright career ahead of him.
The move comes as little surprise when you factor in Gonzalez played in only 11 games so far this year. He appeared in nine MLS games this season, each time as a late second-half substitute. He also featured in two Canadian Championship matches.
In recent games, the Impact have fielded formations with a lone striker up front. With veterans Marco Di Vaio and Jack McInerney ahead of him on the depth chart, Gonzalez’s time on the field seemed as though it would become even more limited.
Such a young player with so much potential should not be sitting on the bench all game. Frank Klopas, Mauro Biello and the rest of the Montreal staff were smart to find Gonzalez some playing time in his home country before the season is out.
Santiago Gonzalez is the third player the Impact have loaned this season. Midfielders Zakaria Messoudi (to Ottawa Fury F.C.) and Blake Smith (Indy Eleven) were each sent out earlier in the season. However, Messoudi was recalled in July after suffering an injury.
Gonzalez’s temporary departure leaves the Impact with only two strikers – Di Vaio and Jack Mac. The move could signal that Montreal is on the brink of bringing in a new signing.
Earlier in the summer transfer window (which runs from July 1st to August 30th), Montreal showed interest in Brossard, Que. native Olivier Occéan. According to TVA Sports, the 32-year-old currently playing in Germany said it would be nice to end his career at home, in front of his family and friends.