Atlanta United are reportedly in the running to sign Monterrey midfielder Jonathan Gonzalez. He would continue the club’s tradition of massive MLS signings.
The post-Frank de Boer era is beginning to take shape for Atlanta United just days after the Dutchman mutually agreed to part ways following a disastrous MLS is Back campaign in which his team lost all three group games and failed to score a goal.
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Gonzalez plays primarily as a defensive midfielder for Monterrey and has made 100 appearances for them. Monterrey is the only professional club he has played for in his career. At 21, Gonzalez is regarded as one of the most promising players in the CONCACAF region. ESPN named Gonzales as one of the top five players under-21 in the region.
A native of California, Gonzalez elected to represent Mexico internationally and has made three appearances for the senior team. He has not featured for Mexico recently in the CONCACAF Nations League but he will certainly be looking to get back in the squad for the upcoming World Cup qualifying campaign.
Per reports, however, Atlanta are not the only club trying to sign Gonzalez. There is reported interest from La Liga club Celta Vigo according to ESPN‘s Herculez Gomez. He tweeted a picture from Gonzalez’s Instagram account that appears to indicate he made his last appearance for Monterrey against Toluca.
Nevertheless, if Gonzalez does indeed commit to Atlanta United, it would be a massive signing for a club that is steeped in significant transfers from South and Central America. Moreover, after the recent disappointment of exiting the MLS is Back Tournament, this signing could provide some hope for the rest of the season. Following de Boer’s departure and an offseason in which much of the club’s talent was stripped away, the front office is looking to get the club back to winning ways. This acquisition would be a big step towards doing that.
Of course, this trajectory is nothing new to Atlanta. Gonzalez may well have hopes of securing a European move at some stage in his career. He already has reported interest from Celta Vigo. But Atlanta have used this as a selling point for other young players, including Miguel Almiron, who secured a move to the Premier League off the back of his excellent form for Atlanta.
The scene, then, is set for Atlanta to pull off one of the biggest signings of the season. One of the top young talents in CONCACAF could be on his way to the club as they eye a run at the MLS Cup.