Atlanta United aren’t content with a hugely successful inaugural season in MLS in 2017. Oh no.
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Tata Martino is set to land a long-term target in Ezequiel Barco, with the Argentinian teenager from Independiente said to cost a record transfer fee of $15 million for a Major League Soccer franchise.
Barco, 18, helped Independiente win the Copa Sudamericana, scoring the wunning goal in the final against Flamengo.
Multiple reports say the deal also includes a 30 percent sell-on clause should Atlanta sell the player by 2019 and 10 percent if he’s sold in 2020. The deal is said to be the second largest in Independiente history after they sold Sergio Aguero to Atletico Madrid in 2006.
This transfer continues ATL’s philosophy of giving young, attack-minded South American players a chance to showcase their talents in MLS.
Atlanta also hold the second-highest MLS transfer fee record when they signed Miguel Almiron for $9.2 million, just behind the $10 million Toronto FC reportedly paid AS Roma for Michael Bradley.
Last season the trio of Almiron, Josef Martinez and Hector Villalba tore MLS defenses apart.
Judging by the video below, Barco will do the same in 2018 as he can play on the left or in a central attacking midfield role.