Talles Magno is about to leave New York City FC

The young Brazilian striker is in the midst of fierce competition between Brazilian clubs as he fights for more playing time in the MLS
Jeff Dean/GettyImages

Talles Magno, the young Brazilian sensation, is facing a whirlwind of uncertainty at New York City FC. At 22, the striker once hailed as one of the brightest prospects in Major League Soccer (MLS) now finds himself trapped in a limbo under coach Nick Cushing. Since his return from injury in May, Talles has been warming the bench, and let's be real, a talent like his can only be patient for so long.

Cushing, with his cautious tactics, seems hesitant to give Talles Magno the shot he deserves. Despite a revolving door of player substitutions during matches, the Brazilian remains overlooked. The outcome? A $10 million player stuck on the bench, unable to showcase his true worth and whether he can indeed elevate NYCFC's game.

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This predicament hasn’t gone unnoticed by Brazilian clubs. Vasco da Gama, the team that launched Talles' career, recently reached out, keen on bringing their former star back home. And why wouldn’t they be? Vasco sees Talles as a key to rejuvenating their attack, a much-needed boost given their struggles in the Brasileirão. However, Atlético-MG has thrown their hat in the ring too, eager to swoop in and take the young talent to Belo Horizonte.

The race for the striker is heating up. Vasco appeals to nostalgia and emotional ties, while Atlético-MG promises an ambitious project and a shot at titles—something Vasco can’t offer anytime soon. Negotiations between Talles Magno’s camp and Atlético-MG are moving quickly, with discussions of a loan with an option to buy on the table.

For Talles Magno, the decision is far from easy. Staying in the MLS means continuing to fight for playing time under Cushing’s shadow. Returning to Brazil, however, offers a chance to rediscover himself as a player and get back on the upward trajectory that brought him to the United States in the first place. Plus, City Football Group, which owns New York City FC, is interested in a permanent deal, adding another layer of complexity to the situation.

The young forward, who has netted 18 goals in 98 games for NYCFC, has only seen the pitch once this year — a 1-0 loss to Charlotte FC in February. The lack of game time not only hinders his development but also chips away at his confidence. Talles Magno knows that to grow, he needs to be on the field, feeling the ball, and facing the challenges of the game.

For Vasco fans, it would be the triumphant return of a prodigal son. For Atlético supporters, Talles Magno’s arrival would be a significant boost in their quest for titles. And for the striker himself, it’s the chance for a fresh start, away from the uncertainties of the MLS and closer to home.