Despite travelling with the San Lorenzo squad for preseason, rumours are gathering pace that MLS club Portland Timbers will finally sign Sebastían Blanco for a fee of around $5 million.
San Lorenzo had previously rebuffed any offers for the talented 28-year-old but Matías Lammens stated that if the club received a clean offer of $5 million then they would not stand in the way.
No deal has yet been formally agreed or announced but reports in Argentina suggest that Portland Timbers have met this figure and will complete the signing in the coming days.
While Blanco is a vital part of Diego Aguirre’s first team and will be a significant loss, it would represent a swift profit on a player that was purchased from West Bromwich Albion in June 2015 for somewhere in the region of $1.5 million.
Although his brief spell in England didn’t work, Blanco has established himself as one on the best players in Argentina and in ten matches this season, scored three goals with five assists. Blanco’s ability to play on either flank or in a central attacking midfield role should see him emerge as a hugely important player in the United States.
San Lorenzo have begun looking for possible replacements and two names mentioned at present are Rubén Botta and Hernán Toledo.
Botta is currently playing for Pachuca in Liga MX after struggling to establish himself at Inter Milan following a move from Tigre. A serious knee injury just before that initial transfer curtailed his progress but could prove to be an excellent alternative.
Youngster Hernán Toledo burst onto the scene last season with Vélez and promptly found himself at Fiorentina but with first team chances limited, a loan back to Argentina could be beneficial.