The Portland Timbers may have their man.
Multiple outlets in Argentina, led by Cesar Luis Merlo of TyC Sports, are reporting that the Timbers have acquired Sebastian Blanco, an Argentine midfielder from San Lorenzo de Almagro, for $5 million.
Sebastián Blanco se irá al Portland de la MLS. A #SanLorenzo le pagan u$s 5 millones de contado. pic.twitter.com/HlN1LBU9dR— César Luis Merlo (@CLMerlo) January 27, 2017
If Blanco, an attacking midfielder who has played on both wings and in the middle, comes to Portland, he would be a designated player and would likely play on the right wing for the Timbers. Portland’s reportedly been in search of a DP right winger throughout this offseason, with reports bubbling for weeks that Caleb Porter and company have made the Ciclon midfielder their primary target.
The trajectory of reports over the weeks, however, has been far from smooth, with Mexico’s Club America and Turkish giants Fenerbahce also being linked to Blanco. Although the reports that the Timbers have completed a deal for Blanco are the most concrete that have been published over the course of the long transfer saga, the lack of stateside confirmation indicates some caution is still warranted.
Nonetheless, if the Timbers can complete the move, their offseason rebuild would be nearly complete and Porter’s side would be close to heading into the regular season with perhaps the most attacking depth in club history.
UPDATE: Emmanuel Quispe, an Argentina-based reporter who specializes in MLS dealings, chimed in Friday with his confirmation from MLS sources.
#MLS SOURCE: #SanLorenzo MF Sebastian Blanco will join Portland #TimbersFC #RCTID #PTFC pic.twitter.com/0j2zNEg9eP— Emmanuel Quispe (@emaquix) January 27, 2017
Although it appears the deal is not yet formally sealed, all indications are it is imminent.