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Orlando City: Cyle Larin transfer deal with Beşiktaş not done yet

Multiple Turkish media outlets report that Beşiktaş JK and Orlando City have reached a deal on a transfer fee without taking the dispute to FIFA.

The agreement reportedly is for £1.85 million, which translates to about $2.3 million, but a spokesman for Orlando City said no deal had been reached at the time of those reports. 

“We haven’t anything new to report, and at this moment we didn’t agree [to] terms with Besiktas,” vice president of communications Diogo Kotscho told Pro Soccer USA Friday morning. 

Negotiations between MLS and Beşiktaş are ongoing, according to league sources, and a resolution is expected very soon.

Orlando City said from the beginning of this ordeal it hoped to come to terms without having to bring the case to FIFA. Transfers can take time to complete as any agreement must be approved by MLS due to the league’s single-entity business structure.

The main issue was whether Larin’s contract option, exercised by Orlando City at the end of the 2017 season, was valid. That no longer seems to be a point of contention, with both sides negotiating a transfer fee.

Larin first told Pro Soccer USA editor Alicia DelGallo exclusively at the end of last season he was ready to play in Europe and believed his Orlando City contract had expired.

“I think I’m at the right place to go play in Europe and it’s the right time,” Larin said in October. “I think I’ll benefit. I have personal goals and dreams and I want to go to Europe and play. I think it’s the right time.”

In January, Beşiktaş posted photos on Twitter of Larin going through a medical evaluation as part of contract negotiations.

Orlando City immediately protested, saying Larin was under contract and hiring an elite attorney to protect its asset. The Lions told Pro Soccer USA Larin signed an agreement last year indicating he knew he had two club option years left on his contact and he viewed them as valid. Orlando City sought the documentation after MLS players successfully convinced FIFA they were unaware club options left on their contracts and were free to jump to overseas clubs.

Larin skipped the opening of Orlando City’s preseason training camp on Monday and was seen in videos training with Beşiktaş instead.

CNN Turkey reported earlier this week Beşiktaş planned to seek a temporary license from FIFA to let Larin play if an agreement could not be reached. Orlando City officials said they knew nothing about that request.

The reported deal will close the 22-year-old Canadian’s up and down run with the Lions. After being draft first overall in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft, he won MLS Rookie of the Year and led Orlando City in scoring during his tenure, but he also was charged with DUI last season and forced to serve a suspension mandated by the league.

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