Atlanta United midfielder Miguel Almiron on Tuesday walked back comments that he hopes to play somewhere in Europe in 2019.
In an interview with ESPN last week, Almiron was quoted as saying, “I have said it before, that my objective is to play in Europe. I work daily on that. I’m happy here in Atlanta. The club makes me feel comfortable, but yes, in 2019, hopefully I will be playing in Europe.”
Almiron, a candidate to be named league MVP because Atlanta United leads MLS in points (47), has consistently said in the past that he wants to play in Europe. The interview with ESPN was the first time that he has included a year with that goal.
Before Tuesday’s training session with the other MLS All-Stars, Almiron said, “I’m really happy in Atlanta and enjoying my time here. I don’t want to rush things. It’s not something l like to talk about. I’m just trying to enjoy the present.
“I don’t know what’s going to happen a year from now. If I stay in Atlanta I will be happy because the fans make me feel really comfortable.”
As Almiron walked to the locker room, Atlanta United fans attending Tuesday’s open session began chanting “Miggy, Miggy.”
Almiron will make his second consecutive appearance in the MLS All-Star game against Juventus on Wednesday at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The left-footed midfielder has 17 goals and 25 assists in 53 appearances the past two seasons.
Atlanta United President Darren Eales has said many times that it is likely that Almiron will be sold because that is part of the club’s belief system. Atlanta United wants to find young, talented players, develop them, and then move them to super-clubs in Europe. As a guest on Monday’s “Men in Blazers” show at The Tabernacle, Eales said that the club will only sell players at the right time, at the right price and to the right club.
Almiron has been linked with some of the better clubs in Europe, including A.C. Milan and Arsenal, with reported transfer fees of at least $20 million. Vancouver’s Alphonso Davies recently was sold to Bayern Munich for a reported $13 million, with add-ons that could make the deal reach more than $20 million.