Orlando player Cyle Larin scores a goal during the Orlando City Soccer versus Puerto Rico friendly soccer game at Orlando City Stadium on Saturday, November 4, 2017. The game was to benefit Hurricane Irma victims. Orlando won the game 6-1. It was Orlando player Kaka's final game as a member of Orlando City Soccer. (Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel)
Orlando City closed its Cyle Larin chapter Tuesday, issuing a statement confirming a transfer agreement has been reached between the Major League Soccer club and Turkish side Beşiktaş J.K.
“After recognizing the existence of a valid contract, Beşiktaş J.K. has agreed with Orlando City SC on terms for the transfer of forward Cyle Larin to the Turkish side for an undisclosed fee,” read the statement. “Although the Club was disappointed with the unacceptable behavior of the athlete and his representatives, a decision was taken to guarantee compensation with the Club’s future in mind.
“The Club looks forward to focusing on the upcoming season with staff and players who honor and respect the strong values of the Club and commitment to our community to lead us through 2018 and beyond.”
Pro Soccer USA previously reported an agreement had been reached Monday, with a transfer fee exceeding the estimated $2.3 million reported by Turkish media outlets the week before.
At the end of the 2017 MLS season, Larin said he was ready to move on and wanted to play in Europe. He and his agent were actively seeking overseas options and seemed to have Orlando City’s blessing.
Then on Jan. 13, Beşiktaş tweeted photos of Larin undergoing a physical exam and wearing the team’s jersey.
Orlando City immediately said it would seek action against Beşiktaş because Larin was not a free agent and a transfer fee must be paid for the striker.
From there, debate raged about whether Larin’s contract with option years was valid, and there was concern the clubs may have to bring the issue to FIFA. Meanwhile, Larin skirted Orlando City’s preseason camp instead suiting up to train with Beşiktaş.
Orlando City’s statement brings a resolution to a weeks-long clash over Larin, who led the Lions in scoring for three seasons.
Larin leaves with 43 goals and six assists in 87 appearances during his three seasons in Orlando.