MLS Insider: Tom Bogert

FC Cincinnati won't pick up Jurgen Locadia's purchase option

Jurgen Locadia - FC Cincinnati - pained expression

FC Cincinnati will not trigger the purchase option at the end of the loan of Dutch forward Jurgen Locadia, GM Gerard Nijkamp told local media Thursday.

Locadia has been on loan from Premier League club Brighton & Hove Albion since the winter of 2020. He had initially joined on a six-month loan but the COVID-19 pandemic changed plans, as the clubs agreed to lower the purchase option and extend the loan through June 30, 2021.

"I spoke last week with Brighton, of course, when I was there," Nijkamp said, via The Enquirer's Pat Brennan and Queen City Press' Laurel Pfahler. "We will not exercise his option. That is clear, but the door is still a little bit open if there are other ways, maybe, to consider from our side to keep Jürgen ... The door is not closed 100-percent but I think also it will be difficult."

As Nijkamp notes, this doesn't completely rule out the idea of Locadia staying in Cincinnati. A source tells that Cincinnati and Brighton remain in contact over the player.

It will be another busy summer for the club, as FC Cincinnati expect to be active in the Secondary Transfer Window, adding another player or two as they seek further additions in defense and the midfield.

As for Locadia, things haven't quite gone to plan for during his time in MLS.

A one-time Dutch wonderkid, Locadia arrived at Cincy with plenty of talent and hype but struggled during the league's abbreviated 2020 season due the pandemic. He had just two goals in 18 appearances (15 starts). His first goal came on his debut in March, with the player ending the year with one goal in his final 1,396 minutes. This year Locadia has looked somewhat improved, with one goal in 292 minutes, but has only started two of the club's six matches thus far.

Locadia scored 72 goals and provided 42 assists across stops with PSV Eindhoven (2011-17), Brighton (2018-20) and TSG Hoffenheim (2019-20) prior to joining Cincinnati.

Cincinnati have three games remaining before the expiration of his loan at the end of the month.