MLS Insider: Tom Bogert

Explaining Cole Bassett’s loan from Colorado Rapids to Fortuna Sittard

Colorado Rapids homegrown midfielder Cole Bassett has a new club in Holland's Eredivisie: Fortuna Sittard, as announced Saturday. The way he got there is a bit complicated, or at least unique.

Bassett, who joined Feyenoord on an 18-month loan in January 2022, was "recalled" by the Rapids from that loan and then immediately loaned to Fortuna for the 2022-23 campaign. Feyenoord retain their purchase option, though, which sources have described as a potential club-record deal.

It's a little overly technical and perhaps confusing. Essentially, Feyenoord wanted to ensure Bassett receives constant playing time.

At Fortuna, he's expected to be a first-choice midfielder. Feyenoord couldn't guarantee consistent playing time this year at their club, but still rate Bassett. They want him to get those minutes for his development and their assessment of whether or not they'll pick up the purchase option.

A source adds that the Rapids will have the right to recall Bassett in January if certain playing time thresholds aren't met.

The Rapids, obviously, had to consent to all of this. There are rules to protect parent clubs when loaning players, in which the new club can't just send the player elsewhere on a sub-loan without the parent club agreeing to it.

Fortuna finished 15th in the 18-team Eredivisie during the 2021-22 campaign, one point out of the relegation zone. Feyenoord, 15-time Eredivisie winners, finished third and earned a Europa League qualifiers spot.

The idea of Bassett joining Fortuna on loan was in the works for weeks, as Bassett played well in preseason with Feyenoord. All parties ultimately decided a much more likely path to consistent starts at Fortuna was best.

The Rapids' club-record transfer is $2 million, a deal that sent homegrown left back Sam Vines to Belgium's Royal Antwerp in August 2021. The total package in Bassett's deal – a loan fee plus a purchase option – would eclipse that if Feyenoord opt to make the move permanent next summer.

Bassett, who just turned 21, played 83 Eredivisie minutes (across seven games) with Feyenoord over the second half of last season after joining from Colorado. He made 72 regular-season appearances in MLS after signing a homegrown contract with the Rapids and breaking into their first team in 2018.

The midfielder made his US men's national team debut in December 2021, scoring the lone goal in a 1-0 win over Bosnia and Herzegovina in a friendly.