It’s no secret that Sporting Kansas City have been unhappy with their center back play from supposed starter Andreu Fontas. He makes north of $1 million per season and he can’t even get into the 18 as of late. Well a rumor from Globo is that Sporting KC tried to make an addition before the transfer window closed in early August.
The move was reportedly for Ecuadorian center back Robert Arboleda, who simply goes by Arboleda. The story says the offer was for a loan with a “call-out” option which I’m guessing is an option to buy, though it could mean the potential for his parent club to call him back (Google Translate could be botching that Portuguese).
Arboleda plays in Brazil for Sao Paulo FC who currently are sitting fourth in the Brazilian top division. The story confusingly mentions a loan, the secondary transfer window and January 2020. It’s unclear when he would have been rumored to join Sporting, but now he can’t join until the 2020 season if the supposed negotiations resume. According to Globo, Sporting KC are “considering making a new proposal with a different business model.” I suspect that means different terms.
Transfermarkt lists Arboleda as a right-footed center back. He is only 27-years-old and Globo says that FC Porto, one of the top clubs in Portugal’s top flight, were also interested but they never officially made an offer.
Whether there are any teeth to these rumors or not, Sporting KC will need to make an addition at center back in 2020. They currently only have four on the roster and Fontas is currently overpaid and under-performing. Most fans are hoping SKC can offload him, which would mean the team likely needs to make at least two additions to pair with Matt Besler, Botond Barath and Graham Smith. Sporting started the 2019 season with five center backs before shipping Abdul Rwatubyaye off to the Colorado Rapids as a part of the trade that brought Benny Feilhaber back to KC.
Arboleda’s deal with Sao Paulo runs through the summer of 2022 so any move would likely involve a transfer fee if it was permanent. In addition to playing for his club team, Arboleda has 16 caps for the Ecuador National Team and has been regularly called into the squad over the last several years. He got his lone assist for his country in his last outing against Japan on June 25th, 2019.
The Blue Testament will bring you more on this and other rumors, as they continue to develop.