Transfer Tracker

FC Cincinnati acquire forward Sergio Santos in trade with Philadelphia Union


  • CIN get: Sergio Santos
  • PHI get: Up to ​​$925,000 GAM and trade percentage

FC Cincinnati have acquired forward Sergio Santos from the Philadelphia Union for up to $925,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM), the Eastern Conference clubs announced Friday.

The deal sees Cincy send a guaranteed $300k in 2022 GAM to Philly, plus another $625k in conditional GAM if certain performance-based metrics or contract conditions are met. Philly will also receive up to 50% of a future trade if Santos is traded to another club within MLS.

The move reunites the 27-year-old Brazilian striker with general manager Chris Albright and head coach Pat Noonan, both of whom were with the Union last year before joining the Orange & Blue.

“Sergio is a player with game-changing pace and power,” Albright said in a release. “He’s a hardworking, versatile striker that can complement our current group. His character and familiarity with how we want to play makes him an ideal addition at this time and I’d like to welcome Sergio to Cincinnati.”

Santos had 19 goals and seven assists across 75 regular-season games (47 starts) with Philadelphia after they signed him in December 2018 from Audax Italiano of the Chilean Primera Division.

He scored the goal that clinched Philly’s Supporters’ Shield title in 2020, a highlight of his three-plus seasons at the club.

“We want to thank Sergio for his time spent with the Philadelphia Union,” sporting director Ernst Tanner said in a release. “He played a major role in our first-ever playoff win and his charisma has contributed to many memorable moments over the past few seasons. We wish him all the best in this next chapter.”

Santos joins Brenner and Brandon Vazquez up top in Cincinnati, while Philadelphia will lean further upon Mikael Uhre and Julian Carranza, two Designated Players they brought in this past offseason.

This is Philly's second outgoing trade of a striker from their 2021 Eastern Conference finalist team, after Kacper Przybyłko was sent to Chicago Fire FC this past January.

Both clubs enter MLS Week 19 in an Audi MLS Cup Playoffs spot, with Philly second in the East and Cincy fifth in the East.