Currently in the final year of his Toronto FC contract, Auro Jr.’s loan spell at Santos FC has seemingly not gone to plan thus far.
Since joining the Campeonato Brasileiro side on a temporary basis back in February, the full-back has featured just 12 times (839 minutes) in all competitions.
In addition, Auro has been an unused substitute in each Santos’ last four fixtures. As of July 21st, his most recent appearance for the club came on July 2nd, where he started and played 59 minutes in a 2-1 defeat to Flamengo.
Madson has been Santos head coach Lisca’s preferred choice at right-back in 2022, with the 30-year-old having played in 16 more games than Auro so far this season.
Moreover, Auro’s opportunities to impress in Brazil have been scarce, and while Santos do have the option to make the defender’s deal permanent, several reports have indicated the club will part ways with the TFC loanee at the end of the year.
Beyond infrequent minutes, when Auro has been on the pitch for Santos, he has failed to truly establish himself as a pivotal player for the club.
In his third Santos appearance, the former São Paulo youth product was arguably at fault for two of Ferroviária’s second and third goals during a thrilling 3-3 draw in the Campeonato Paulista.
For Ferroviária’s second of the game, Auro’s poor clearance (1:05 in the video above) fell right to Thomaz Carvalho Costa at the top of the box, who planted the ball right into the bottom corner of the net. The penalty Santos conceded could have also been avoided as Auro waited a little too long to play the ball while in a dangerous area (1:41). He then lost possession, which prompted the opposition cross that led to a Santos handball in the penalty area.
Auro thus struggled to make an impression in the early stages of his loan, which has limited the right-back to sporadic appearances ever since.
Santos currently sit ninth in the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A with 20 games remaining. The club was also just eliminated from both the Copa Sudamericana and the Copa do Brasil earlier in July.
In terms of his future at Toronto FC, Auro will be eligible for free agency at the end of 2022. Yet, the defender does have a contract option for 2023 as per the MLSPA.
Toronto FC players who are eligible for free agency at the end of the season:— Waking the Red (@WakingtheRed) July 20, 2022
- Alex Bono (out of contract)
- Chris Mavinga (option for 2023)
- Jonathan Osorio (out of contract)
- Auro Jr. (option for 2023)#TFCLive https://t.co/E1L9lJGbHJ
With the right-back all but set to return to Toronto following the expiring of his loan, fans will be intrigued to see whether or not the club decides to trigger the one-year extension in his current deal.
Auro featured 109 times in four seasons with the Reds, becoming the first South American player in TFC history to join the century club in appearances. The Brazilian was also a part of the side that won the 2018 Canadian Championship.