New York City FC: The latest on the Valentín Castellanos transfer rumors

WASHINGTON, DC - May 18: Valentín Castellanos #11 of New York City FC scores on a penalty kick during the first half of the MLS game against D.C. United at Audi Field on May 18, 2022 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - May 18: Valentín Castellanos #11 of New York City FC scores on a penalty kick during the first half of the MLS game against D.C. United at Audi Field on May 18, 2022 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /

Before the 2022 season, New York City FC star Valentín Castellanos was expected to be sold to another team after his fantastic 2021 campaign.  There were rumors of interest from all different clubs in the offseason, including European clubs like Feyenoord Rotterdam, and South American clubs like the ever persistent Sociedade Esportiva Palmeiras in Brazil’s Série A.  Of course, with the way the Argentine was playing, ideally he would make his way to Europe.

Yet, to everyone’s surprise, Castellanos did not move to a new club, and as such, is still with NYCFC.  No club met the team’s asking price, which was estimated to be around $15 million.  He would have liked to move, but at the same time, he was a professional, and based on his attitude and play in 2022, was clearly okay with staying in MLS.

However, he is expected to move this summer, and again, it would be shocking for the 2021 Golden Boot winner to not sign with a European club.  Sure, Castellanos would be okay with a move to a top South American club like Club Atlético River Plate.  But, with his continued fantastic form, European clubs continue to have interest.

Hence, as stated before the season started, he should make his way across the pond.  Most of the European leagues have completed their seasons, and already the transfer rumors and actual signings are in full swing.

Many clubs are interested in New York City FC star, Valentín Castellanos

New York City FC has always expressed that they will work with Castellanos, and want to see him grow as a player.  The one aspect the team will hold their ground is the asking price.  Now, based on the rumors, there seems to be interested clubs that would be willing to meet the price, and then some.

One such club that was the first to hit the rumor news was Premier League club, West Ham United F.C.  Per The Mirror, West Ham was willing to meet NYCFC’s asking price, and believe the forward was “a gamble worth taking”.   Although, this rumor, for the most part, was just that. MLS Insider Tom Bogert tweeted how the West Ham news was not accurate, and then there were reports that the club is not interested in the striker.

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There are other Premier League clubs who are chasing after the forward, and likely would be willing to meet NYCFC’s asking price.  According to the Italian site TuttoMercatoWeb, both Everton F.C. and Newcastle United F.C. are interested in Castellanos.  Additionally, Italian Serie A club, Bologna F.C. 1909, is interested, and possibly might have approached the Pigeons already.

Meanwhile, there are reports about Leeds United Football Club too. Per 90min, Leeds is highly interested in the attacker, and possibly leads the race at the current moment.  There were actually club representatives spotted in the United States, and possibly they were there to meet with NYCFC.

In addition, another Premier League club reportedly entered the race for Castellanos.  Nottingham based football writer, Callum Castel-Nuovo, tweeted how Nottingham Forest F.C. is also interested in the forward.  The newly promoted team had expressed interest before too.

The European clubs are not the only ones showing interest though.  River Plate and Palmeiras are both still expressing interest, as according to Marca.  The issue for River would be the asking price, and while Castellans again would gladly return to Argentina to play there, the likelihood is slim.  And again, the striker is good enough to make the jump to Europe.  Then, at this rate, it is comical Palmeiras is still going after him.

Despite all of the rumors, nothing seems to be close to fruition at this moment.  In addition, there is the question of whether Castellanos would be able to play in the Premier League due to the league’s labor laws.  If a club in England were to sign him, then more than likely he would have to go out on loan.  Therefore, it might be better the NYCFC star to move to another league like the Eredivisie, Bundesliga, or Italian Serie A.

More importantly, Castellanos is only 23, and still has time to develop.  He does not need to necessarily move to one of the bigger clubs right away, and could move to a club that is the next step up.  If he prefers River Plate, then New York City FC needs to work with their star, for he deserves to go where he wants.  Nevertheless, if they can help him go to Europe, and Castellanos find a club where he is happy to sign, then that should be the move he makes.