By DAN KARELL
Fredy Montero isn’t the only South American player who isn’t returning to Major League Soccer.
Finishing his six-month loan with Al-Rayyan in Qatar, Uruguayan midfielder Alvaro “Flaco” Fernandez has returned to his homeland, joining Nacional in Montevideo on-loan through the end of the 2013 season.
The 27-year-old is still on the books with the Chicago Fire, though he only spent a half-season with them in 2012 before deciding he wanted to leave the United States. Fernandez originally joined MLS in 2010 with the Seattle Sounders as a designated player.
Due to injuries, the Uruguayan international played just 11 times at Al-Rayyan this past spring.
Here are some more stories to catch up with around the league:
ROCHAT NEARING SWITZERLAND MOVE
Alain Rochat’s ill-fated stay with D.C. United looks set to be over.
According to reports, Rochat is on the verge of signing with Swiss Super League club BSC Young Boys in Bern, the same club Rochat played with in from 2002-2005. In exchange for the Swiss defender, D.C. United is set to receive a transfer fee of $500,000.
The Canadian-born Swiss raised Rochat was acquired by D.C. United on June 7 from the Vancouver Whitecaps, stunning the 30-year-old defender who made his displeasure known soon after to local media. Rochat called the mid-season trade “inhuman” and was reportedly leaving behind a pregnant wife and his children in Vancouver.
During his time at D.C. United, Rochat played in five matches, starting four, mainly playing at left back.
TIMBERS MIDFIELDER MOVES ON LOAN TO SWEDEN
Struggling to find minutes with the Portland Timbers first team this season, midfielder Michael Nanchoff has decided to go overseas to receive some crucial playing experience.
Nanchoff, who has played in just one game this season, an eight minute substitute cameo, has been loaned out by the Timbers to Swedish second division side Jönköpings Södra through the end of November. The Superettan side currently sit fourth from the bottom of the table, though the won’t move anywhere as the league is on a summer break until late July.
While the 24-year-old midfielder had trouble breaking into the Timbers lineup, he did feature heavily for the reserves this season, scoring four goals and adding an assist in five matches. During his time at Akron under current Timbers head coach Caleb Porter, Nanchoff helped lead the side to an NCAA Championship.
D.C. UNITED SIGN HOMEGROWN PLAYER
After one season at Wake Forest, 18-year-old midfielder Collin Martin has achieved his dream of becoming a professional soccer player.
The University announced in a press release on Tuesday that Martin, a Bethesda, Maryland native, had signed a homegrown player contract with D.C. United, making him the third homegrown player on the roster after starting goalkeeper Bill Hamid and defender Ethan White.
“D.C. United made an offer that I felt I couldn’t refuse,” Martin said in the press release. “It has been a dream of mine to play professional soccer, and the offer they made was too difficult to turn down.”
Martin, who has played at numerous youth levels of the U.S. ranks including the U-17s and U-20s as recently as this summer at the Toulon Tournament, played just one season at Wake Forest, playing in all 20 games for the Demon Deacons, starting 15 of them. Martin also joins a large class of professional soccer players to spend time at Wake Forest, including new teammate James Riley.
What do you think of these reports? Disappointed that Fernandez didn’t return to MLS? Do you think D.C. United received enough in return from Young Boys for Rochat? Do you see Nanchoff succeeding in Sweden?
Share your thoughts below.