TORONTO, Canada—Well, that was fast.
According to César Luis Merlo, Santos has confirmed that it has agreed to sell Venezuelan international Yeferson Soteldo to Toronto FC for $6.5 million USD. In exchange, Toronto FC will receive 75 per cent of the player’s rights.
Yeferson Soteldo jugará en el #Torontofc de la MLS.— César Luis Merlo (@CLMerlo) April 23, 2021
*️⃣#Santos lo vende en u$s 6.500.000 por el 75%, según me confirman desde ese club.
*️⃣Ese dinero debe ser dividido en partes iguales entre los y Huachipato . pic.twitter.com/BxpqQZRrfs
According to Merlo, the money will be equally divided between Santos and Chilean side Huachipato, where Soteldo was originally acquired from by the Brazillian side back in 2019.
Globo Esporte reported Saturday morning that Huachipato, who still own 25 per cent of Soteldo’s rights, have also agreed to the deal and have already signed the necessary transfer documents required to sell the attacker to Toronto according to the club’s lawyer, with only paperwork left to be done on Santos’ end before a deal can be finalized.
Soteldo was left out of the Santos FC side Friday night in their match vs. Novorizontino.
The deal has yet to be confirmed by Toronto FC, but if Soteldo is indeed on his way to joining the club, he will become the Reds third designated player, alongside Alejandro Pozuelo and Jozy Altidore.
In an exclusive interview with Globo Esporte, Soteldo expressed his desire to join the Reds after receiving an offer he couldn’t refuse.
“I’m excited to play for Toronto FC,” said the current Santos forward through the help of Google Translate. “They count on me to fight for everything and to be one of the players in the franchise. Canada is a beautiful country, and the MLS has grown impressively.
“I am sure that very soon it will be one of the most powerful leagues in the world. And I want to be part of that story.”
The 23 year old has registered one goal and one assist in seven appearances so far this season after scoring seven times and adding nine assists in 44 games in 2019—including this absolute screamer in the semifinal of the 2020 Copa Libertadores.
Yeferson Soteldo played a major role for Santos in their run to 2020 Copa Libertadores final, including this golazo in the semifinal vs Boca.— JG Fútbol (@JGFutbol10) April 22, 2021
Along with Marinho, he's their best player and source of attacking creativity and inspiration.#TFCLivepic.twitter.com/B1Gv8bMB2z
Toronto FC are apparently offering ‘much higher’ wages than Soteldo’s currently earning in Brazil, which would go a long way in securing his long-term future.
“The club (Santos) is experiencing a very critical economic situation,” said Soteldo. “The offer that came from Toronto FC is very good for the club, it will help to resolve debts and will also guarantee my future and that of my family. I have three children. The world and football have changed because of the pandemic. While in many parts of the world, including Europe, dozens of clubs are failing, there was an offer from MLS that I cannot refuse.”
For those of you who have gotten this far and are still wondering what purchasing 75 per cent of a player’s rights mean...don’t worry, so are we.
We’ll keep you updated as this ongoing story develops.