TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Trade
- LAFC get: Sebastian Mendez
- ORL get: Up to $750k GAM ($300k guaranteed)
Additionally, Orlando could receive $225,000 in GAM in 2023 and $225,000 in GAM in 2024 if Mendez signs a new deal with LAFC on or before the 2023 Roster Compliance Date. Orlando retain a percentage of Mendez’s future transfer fee should he be dealt.
Mendez’s contract with Orlando was set to expire at the end of the 2022 MLS season.
”We are excited to add a dynamic midfielder with extensive MLS and international experience like Sebastian,” LAFC co-president & general manager John Thorrington said in a release. “Sebastian’s physical and technical qualities will complement our midfield, and we are excited to see the value he will bring to LAFC.”
Mendez, 25, spent nearly four seasons with Orlando. He scored once across 72 games (51 starts) after arriving from Independiente del Valle in his home country.
“We want to thank Seba for the effort and dedication he’s shown us throughout his time here in Orlando,” Luiz Muzzi, Orlando’s EVP of soccer operations and general manager, said in a release. “He’s been an incredibly important player for us these past three-and-a-half years, both on and off the field.
“He joined us as a young player back in 2019, with belief in the project we were building and made the commitment to join us despite having multiple clubs pursuing him. We wish him nothing but the very best and look forward to seeing all he achieves as he moves forward with his career."
Mendez has been capped 30 times by Ecuador since making his debut in 2018. He featured in seven World Cup qualifiers as La Tri became one of South America’s four automatic entrants to Qatar 2022.
At LAFC, Mendez joins two international teammates in left back Diego Palacios and midfielder Jose Cifuentes. The Black & Gold are the current Supporters’ Shield leaders and have already added global stars Gareth Bale and Giorgio Chiellini this summer.
Heading into Week 22, LAFC (first in West) and Orlando (fifth in East) are both on track to make the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs.